What Features Would You Like to See on THS?

Here are a couple feature ideas:

  1. Provide an option in a sitter’s profile to indicate that the sitter does not use the availability calendar, and then use that flag to omit those sitters from date based searches for sitters.
  2. Provide an option for sitters to set in their profile that they don’t want to be invited for sits and use this to preclude the ability to issue invitations (perhaps not applying this to invitations from prior sit owners).
    The general theme is to provide users with more granular control over how they want to interact with the platform.

Here’s a weird one: Sometime within the past year, pet info disappeared from the listings on the web. There is no section to write about your pet’s unique personality, how they play, etc. That’s okay. I don’t have a problem with that as the listings could get long especially with multiple pets. HOWEVER, if you filled that section out, it’s still on the phone app. I never got the memo telling me it was disappearing, or that it would still show up on the phone app.

This now makes me wonder when I apply to sits, am I missing something? Should I check the app as well to see if there is more or different text? What if an owner quizes me and thinks I didn’t read the listing because I didn’t know that Gingercat hates the laser but loves catnip?

There shouldn’t be any difference in the text or photos on the web or on the app.

Just going to add, I went into the App to explore this more and discovered that I can’t edit or delete this part. It’s a phantom. It was removed from the website, still appears in the app, but there is no way to delete it so others won’t see it. This could awkward and even embarressing if for instance a sitter asked about a departed cat and the HO didn’t even understand where they saw it on the listing.

If this was the case you would be left with about three sitters in the world to choose from!

The THS calendar is unbelievably difficult and cumbersome to use so most sitters gave up on it a long time ago.

It is so complicated that THS can’t even figure out how to add a key to let home hosts know what the three different coloured squares indicate so you can only imagine what chance we humble sitters have of keeping it updated !

1 Like

There needs to be a simpler way for HOs to change dates on a listing, both before confirming a sitter, after confirming a sitter, and even during a sit. I don’t mean that a HO should be able to just change dates because they feel like it. But currently dates OFTEN change AFTER a sitter is selected but before the sit starts. Sometimes dates change DURING a sit. THS might not be aware of how common this is. But it is in fact VERY common.

This usually involves an “informal” agreement oral or in writing between the HO and sitter.

For example:

Before confirming a sit: The HO Mary chooses Sitter Paul. Paul can’t get a to Mary’s house before Tuesday at 8 AM. But Mary wants Paul to sit. Mary agrees it’s not a big deal. Her neighbor can check on the cats and give them dinner the night before, and if Paul is delayed, the neighbor, can even give them breakfast. Currently, as a tech-savvy HO the only way I know how to make this change without triggering a lot of new applicants, would be to cancel the sit altogether and privately send Paul the new dates. In addition to canceling the sit, the private invitation involves a 4 step back and forth. Could there be an easier way to do this? One that doesn’t involve cancelling the sit and won’t trigger new applicants? Another common situation is where the dates are flexible and both parties decide the sit can and should be extended by a few days.

After confirmation: This is VERY common. After confirmation HO Susan checks in with Sitter Noah to let them know they are open to extending the dates and would like to change the flight. Noah is fine with this and asks Susan to change the dates to make it official. Susan has other better things to do and Noah doesn’t push it as she knows the process is a pain and will involve cancelling this competitive sit. Noah is worried she’ll somehow lose the sit or antagonize Susan because the process isn’t easy. Noah drops the matter but feels insecure about those last couple of days. What if Susan changes her mind again?

During the sit: This just happened to me. I’m a combined sitter. I was on a sit that was supposed to end Monday. On Sunday I had car trouble. Given that garages were closed and I needed to contact the HO to find an honest mechanic I could talk to on Monday, I asked if it would be possible to extend the sit one day. It was! This also meant my sitter would need to extend if possible. They could. Everything worked, but that last day was not official. Neither was the first day actually, as that was an agreement I made with the HO after confirmation.

What if there were a really easy way for HOs to do this when there is mutual agreement? This could be a form that reads like a contract that both parties have PREVIOUSLY discussed and agreed to the change. Both parties would need to sign off. If a sitter suddenly couldn’t do a date, but it didn’t work for HO, and the HO cancelled, that would be on the sitter. If the HO came home early and “cancelled” the sit without getting the sign off, that would be on the HO. While HOs might need to initiate this, sitters would be able to send the form to less internet-savvy HOs. It’s a win for HOs and sitters and THS because if there is a dispute during the sit, there’s no argument that the sit wasn’t “official”.

In addition to keeping everyone safer with the actual dates being in writing on the system, the other advantage of this is that with the new overlap update, this would allow sitters to take sits on dates when there is NO actual overlap but the system shows an overlap because the dates were not changed.


I also came on here to post this feature request!

As a sitter, here’s where it would come in useful to me:

I see a sit I’m intersted in, but maybe has a few “no reviews,” or a seemingly out of the ordinary not so great review (HO was unkind and uncommunicative for example) amidst various positive reviews. Normally, I just would not apply b/c any red flag for me is a hard pass. But if I could reach out to other sitters who’ve sat for this HO to ask about their experience, I could get a better idea and maybe judge for myself if the negative review was simply a negative nancy or if it was legit, considering there are many other positive reviews.

Another case it would be helpful that I also literally just saw. HO’s posted for dates I was seeking, however in their description they said they were traveling in another month (although the same dates) - so it was confusing to know which set of dates was the typo. I would have to “apply” in order to even make contact with them about this date confusion. It’d be easier if I could just chat them and say, Hey the dates you posted are Nov 9-15, but in your description, it says January 9-15. Which is accurate?

I think it would help BOTH SIDES sus out things. It would allow sitters to share with other sitters things they may not say in their review of the sit (for example - that even though it’s a non smoking home technically, it still smells like smokers used to live here.) And it allows HOs to chat with other HO’s about potentialy sitters, just like you would a babysitter in your neighborhood: Hey, you hired her for this task, what did you think? How was their communication? Were they qualified to your satisfaction? How did they leave your house? Etc.

The review system is helpful, but let’s all be honest - in many cases, we don’t say “everything” - that is just true. So to be able to chat with others directly who’ve had the experience we are potentially going to engage in is helpful.

And yes, this should be a toggle that we as users can keep open or not. If folks don’t want to chat, fine. But my hunch is most would have it OPEN to chats!

1 Like

I beg of you, PLEASE make sure that the actual number of pets corresponds to the number indicated in the icon. That “one” dog can turn out to be seven.

And an ability to search for pets in combination, along with ability to filter by number of pets. I can read the listing to decide if I want to deal with that cat colony or not, but it would be nice to know either way.


Another new thought post the recent overlap update. It would make sense for HOs offering flexible dates to actually offer flexible dates EG a start date from/to and an end/date from to. If HOs offered flexible dates, then sitters should be able to apply even with an overlap, but not accept if the final date interferes with an existing sit. This would absolutely benefit HOs with hard to fill sits who are willing to work around a sitter’s schedule.


@Squig and number of dogs would also be useful

1 Like

Big dog/little dog filters for sitters to find sits. Or maybe gentle dog/strong dog or something. I think most dog people are fine with either, but there is a subset of sitters who may be good with smaller or less pully dogs, and are not up to a challenge.

1 Like

I’d like to be able to search by dog breed.

Awesome suggestions!

I have mentioned this before, however will do so again.

Allow owners to have a selectable ‘number of applications’ option. Default it to 5 as is the norm now for everyone, however for those who would like more applicants for their sitter listings they simply change the number in their profile. Voila!


Two things I’d like to see in HO listings:

  • How many/what kind of updates you would like from your sitter

  • Will the sitter need to drive to dog walks?

and one in the Welcome Guide:

  • What consumables (if any) can the sitter use?

I would like to see a section on the listing where the Homeowner has to state what arrangements they have made to pay for any emergency vet bills or emergency repairs to the home if these are required during the stay.

For example :

“Account set up with vet for emergency treatment”
“Emergency contact will pay for any emergency repairs to the home if these are required during the stay and I am not contactable.”


I don’t find this to be a problem because I use the map to search, so I know pretty much the area the city is in. I don’t find it difficult to type the name of the town into Google Maps, either. I do have a problem with homeowners listing a different city than the one they actually live in.

Homeowners should have to input their physical address, and the listing should reflect that as the city listed in the ad. I’ve had homeowners post an ad indicating it’s in a city which is actually over an hour away from the small town they really live in, which is flat-out lying.
The ad should also list the geolocated neighborhood while THS is at it.


That does not make much of a difference. It is not the HOs that put a pin - they mention a town and then the system places a pin on the map.

There is no way that those 168 sits are so close to the centre.

So yes, what one would like is that HOs would put a circle on the map. Where one might allow them some stated uncertainties in the precise position if they were worried about privacy.

Hmmm… I’ve saved up to 7 searches on the web (desktop) version.

HOs do input their physical address. The pin though… it’s in the same city, but nowhere near where we live. @BackpackHousesitter

Listings should be automatically canceled after a certain period of time. And what reminders do HOs get to communicate? People seem to lack common courtesy. Do they leave their friends, family members, and business associates waiting for long? I get that people are busy, but so am I. It just seems really disrespectful to let listings go more than a week without at least an update from the HO.

1 Like