I recently did a sit where other aspects of the sit were fine the home was lovely in a desirable location and home owner was most considerate and generous in her provisioning and catering for me as a sitter although the pooches were sweet natured and affectionate when at home when it came to walking them one of the dogs was the hound from Hades He was a boxer super strong who would simply lose all control and tug and strain at the leash in a very full on manner whimpering and rasping loudly I felt there was something wrong with his breathing and thought he might keel over on me ( sitters worst nightmare hey ?) but the owner assured me he always did that. In a most frenetic disconcerting and alarming manner he would lunge this way and that and try to chase every single dog that passed by us and the only way I could walk him was by keeping him on a very short leash with a choker chain collar which I didnt enjoy much as he certianly wasnt getting the most out of his walks I have walked big dogs before who pull at their leash so wasnt inexperienced but out of the dozens of sits I have done over the last two years this dog easily rates up there as the hardest dog I have ever had to walk. He was a nightmare . When it came to giving a review although some aspects of the sit were 5 star this pooches behaviour if it was reported honestly would have brought the rating down to 3 or 4 stars and in the interests of fair reporting to other sitters I would have to give an honest account of my experiences of walking him so I have so far declined to give any sort of review …becuase the sit was otherwise fine . Just wondering what others sitters might do in this situation thanks .Wendy
Write all the good bits in there @wendywindow & add “Sitters need to be strong, experienced, firm and confident to take care of Hades and manage his behaviour on his daily walks (insert name as appropriate).” That’s all true and non inflammatory. If we read that we’d know what we were in for as sitters. We’ve had three crazy strong dogs - saluki, boxer and PWD - over our sits and mentioned their strength/challenge in all feedback. No problems with any of the HOs.
Good thought Cuttlefish but can I rate it as a 5 star sit when the aspect of this sit actually made me very anxious, and found he daily walks a distressing prospect not to mention jarring and almost putting my back out ?
Why don’t you go for 4 @wendywindow? That says good, if not very good, but not perfect and is truthful. Just make sure they review you before you offer feedback would be my one extra caveat
@wendywindow please be factual and non inflammatory in your review for the sake of future sitters. It’s really dangerous for future sitters and the dog if they are not experienced or capable of handling such a strong and potentially aggressive dog. Both sitter and dog can easily be injured. The home owner is obviously aware of the poor behaviour but didn’t bring it to your attention before you agreed to the sit. Very unfair!
haha i was in the same dilemma. i did not enjoy walking the dog since he would lunge into the street at passing cars and chase cats & birds. i learnt to have a super strong grip on the leash which makes for a not so fun walk. but i did end up reviewing the owners a 5 since they gave me a 5. i threw in a quick mention of how the “a strong grip” is needed to walk the dog.
This dog needed more than strong grip he also required the walker to have nerves of steel and the patience of a saint and his frenetic responses to every passing stimulus seemed over the top and he was a bit of a ditz . He also seemed to have a serious breathing and rasping problem as well after walking as well which worried me that perhaps needed medical attention .I When he was calm at home he was very affectionate and I grew by the middle of the sit to have a real soft spot for him which inspired me to keep walking him regularly but I did find he underaking distessing I was told none of his poor behavioural traits and health issues before I agreed to the sit .The owner simply billed the two dogs as beautiful dogs .I have raised all these issues with the owner and am feeling so divided about what to say and how to rate am going to by pass giving a review this time and have prompted the owner to really be clear in her future posts about the dogs behaviour letting prospective sitters know they will need to be really strong and firm and capable of handling a difficult dog .
As is being confirmed, be factual. The animal behavior was too much for you. State the facts.
Dog requires strong, firm …to manage pulling, walk etc.
Include positive aspects of the beast.
Same as you just shared here
I suggest considering what would happen if the wrong sitter ends up with this dog in the future and how you’d feel if the dog and/or sitter or someone else were hurt, because the sitter unknowingly took the sit. Why: From my POV, you have a moral responsibility to not let that happen, because you know this HO is hiding this from sitters. It’s safety issue. I’d not only write the review honestly and rate the sit low, I’d report them to THS. The HO has in effect made you complicit if you help them hide this issue.
I won’t sit Boxer dogs. So the owner wasn’t honest then? I really feel you should start with all the positives but mention the pulling and jumping of the Boxer and that the sit would suit someone strong. I had a sit with a dog who nearly yanked my arm out of its socket several times until I could let him off the lead. That hadn’t been mentioned until I arrived. I reviewed the positives, as I really did bond with him, but stated that the sitter needed to be strong because of his pulling.
You mustn’t bypass writing a review @wendywindow! The owner is unlikely to take your advice and be honest as knows it will be more difficult to find a sitter
@wendywindow Like others, I feel you do need to give feedback on this sit and support what @Cuttlefish says and rating it 4* or 3*. You can mention that you have experience with large dogs that have pulled hard before but this one really was very strong and difficult to control. There were definitely positives on the sit which should be acknowledged.
It’s unfortunate that the owner did not disclose this issue up front, had they done so then it ought not effect the star rating. One possible approach is to give a 5 rating and state “I’d have given this 6 stars if the fit had been better as regards [dog"s name] aggressiveness in walking and when approaching other dogs vs. my ability to handle and be comfortable with that”.
Did they mention what the dog was like on the lead in their profile or your communication back and forth? If they did, then personally I would take that into account when you review as you were aware of what you were going into, and that is what forms the basis of your review.
Personally I don’t compare one sit to another when writing reviews, I review based on their profile mixed with whether that profile matched my experience while sitting.
But if they didn’t tell you about it, then that’s different, be honest.
In consideration of poeples advice on this forum in terms of wanting to validate the good stuff at the sit and also warn other sitters of potential drama with the unruly doggie I have gone ahead and given the HOmeowner a 4 star rating and raised the issue of the dog in the review
This particular sit was undertaken through another site not the TH site
Thanks ot all for your input I will now close this thread thankyou