We had a 9 day sit with cute puppy and it was a lot of work but we loved every minute. Moving forward I learned a few things. 1.) big home with a lot of windows can be incredibly hot. Puppies are a lot of work! We were asked to take her out once every hour but I realized the cutie puppy did not need every hour. We had small leash to walk puppy in yard, I really wished for a longer leash. Walking the puppy at night was hard as lights were not bright at all. Here are big learning lessons. Document everything!! Before we left we cleaned and I swifter house and all floors. We took dog out 3 times and she pooped and perfect. We definitely did not leave any poop or pre in house. I should have videotaped everything. I’m not sure if the puppy pooped and peed later when family came home but we did not leave any poop or pee. We did shower and we normally don’t shed like crazy but homeowner showed us their shower and drain was loaded with hair. It could have been us so next time I’ll go in and check. Hope these lessons help other sitters. We are new so looking to read other suggestions.
Update: we missed a poop that was in an area I didn’t realize pup could poop near. I definitely didn’t see it or I would have picked up!
Congratulations on your first sit. It was cool of you to start this thread.
Unfortunate about the pooing and peeing. That could happen to any of us who leave before the HOs return, which many of us have had to do at some point. They’re animals, after all, especially with puppies.
So ended up I did miss the poop as it was over in a corner and the sauna was in the way, but I should have looked! Rookie mistake and I’m glad HO shared feedback so I could learn.
You know, there are all kinds of HO and sitters and you’re right to look at this as a BIG learning lesson. I read what other HO ask/require and I just think no, I wouldn’t want that houseist! I try to make things as easy as I can and as clear as I can for housesitters–both to make it easy for them and also to help my pets too. I think as you go along, you will learn to refine interviewing owners, have clear ideas of what is expected and where you want to make the commitment. A puppy is ALOT so I commend you for that. The HO sounds a bit like they didn’t understand all you were asked to do.
Thankyou for your post @Adgebarker . Your experience has confirmed our personal decision not to take on sits with puppies , no matter how cute they are.
I’m glad that overall you enjoyed the experience and loved every minute of it.
Im always grateful to just have a sitter and whilst they have always left our house clean and tidy I would never criticise if they didn’t. Our pets happiness is what is most important.
A year ago i had a local sit caring for a 5 month old Maltipoo, he was absolutely the cutest dang thing, yet his Mom alerted me to the fact he was not completely housebroken. He mostly did poops , thankfully not pees. He had puppy carpet for that as we’ll as the backyard. He definitely was a lot of work, yet fun too. She shared her apartment/flat in San Francisco with roommates so it was a whole different vibe. Fortunately the roommates were also gone. I documented all his daily trips to the park, as well as adventures in the house. I sent her 2x daily videos of all his antics as well as numerous photos.
Well done on your first sit. It sounds somewhat challenging for your first sit.
I think as you do more sits you begin to realise what sits will and won’t work for you and also any red flags with the HO. I’m on my 14th sit since joining 14 months ago.
I took sits early on that I wouldn’t now including a HO that put post it notes on everything telling me not to touch.
I recently rejected sits that the HO asked me to pay for 4 nights presit hotel accommodation and another that asked me to feed his 9 cats 5 times a day and walk the neighbours dog 4 times a day.
Your post made me belly laugh. That’s a lot to request!
We must have an extraordinarily easy sit. 3 loving dogs, large fenced backyard, no walking required, no plants, we are in gorgeous mountains in Colorado so you just listen to the birds and watch the fox stroll by.
But we do ask that our sitters don’t leave all day. It’s distressing to our dogs. After all, they are there to hang out with our dogs as well.
It’s interesting to read how different the sitter obligations can be.
Same here, puppies are incredibly cute but very demanding! I really think they should be a paid sit, especially if litter training is involved!
Also wanted to add: Ask HO how far is shopping for groceries. It was about 30 minutes and last thing I want to do is leave the house and crate the puppy within the first few hours. We were hungry and had nothing to eat. Next time will check before so we are all set! I think first day it’s good to just get to know the pets!
Yep! Good point! Lots of learning as new Sitters venture into the abyss! Another tip for Owners: if you expect the Sitter to clean your home, please have all of the cleaning supplies organized and show the Sitter where everything is located. I have spent lots of time looking for the vacuum and mop. Many Owners don’t have rubber gloves. I will often bring my own!
Brilliant suggestion! I had same issue!!
But you know, I’d have thought the HO would’ve ensured you had at least the basics…we’ve had an informal cat sit recently and I cooked a meal and left the fridge & freezer full. Maybe I’m doing it all wrong?
That sounds very thoughtful @Elsa1 and pretty normal in two years of full time house sitting. Occasionally there is nothing or simply spices and that’s fine as long as you know. Always good to discuss with HOS before the sit @Adgebarker - We ask them what would you like us to use/not use/replace? We’re not offended by what you request but would like to be clear on both sides. Then there’s no hidden surprises.
We are in a similar situation on our current sit involving two housebound kelpies, one is only 2 years old and they have no access to the outdoors themselves and because HO doesn’t want them peeing and pooing on the lawn, they have to be taken out to the footpath one at a time on a leash every couple of hours - this was not made evident in the listing. They also need two long walks every day but because they don’t walk on a lead or come when they’re called and are not socialised with other dogs - they have to be driven to a park and all other dogs have to be avoided. They are lovely dogs though and and it’s not their fault the way the humans have seen fit to keep them. You definitely learn something from every sit you do but there will always be something else unexpected that comes up. Ce la vie, you can only do your best and it sounds like you certainly did that.
We’ve done sits where there’s no mop & bucket! How the hard floors get cleaned is puzzling!
I am convinced that some Owners have cleaning person but do not divulge this information as they want the Sitter to leave it clean. I love Owners who are generous and thoughtful enough to coordinate their cleaning people to clean on the day that I leave! When this has happened, we don’t usually know about until the first day of the Sit, and we celebrate!
I had a sit recently that had a stick vacuum that had a hole in the stem so would not pick up anything unless the handheld portion was detached and used on it’s own, and there was a lot of dog hair. I went through the whole apt and vacuumed the floors with a hand-held vacuum and wiped the bathroom floor with paper towels. There was no broom or brush and pan either.