What makes a sit Special?

Thanks, Shannon. I’m sitting in SuA till Sept. 24. @Angela_L will be in the area and we were discussing a meetup of THS folks. Happy to get together.

@Angela_L, I’m squared away with my new sit now. Met the HOs — lovely, kind folks — and they’ve left me with their dog, who’s a sweetheart. We’re now sitting in the backyard — he’s dozing next to me and I’m enjoying a bottle of wine his humans were kind enough to give me.

Happy to meet up with you all in SuA.


I actually love to bike and its a great way to get around for free, so one can spend more mula on the good restaurants in the area. Plus its good exercise. If you’re only pet sitting cats, you’re not walking a dog.

yes. I love your reply. The sits I do that end up being the most fun and satisfying are the ones where the owners share a meal with you and you get to know them.

PS. I love Ventura! I lived in Carp for years. Always so nice to be near the water


Absolutely. I lived in Carp for 8 yrs. A sweet town with super friendly people


What a great question. Thanks for asking. The fact that you’re asking, tells me you’d be a good home owner to sit for. I really appreciate when the home owner fills out the House sit guide. It’s a great “go to” when I have a question.

Another really thoughtful thing is when the home owners have a meal with me - either cooking themselves, ordering in, or taking me out to dinner. It’s always nice to be able to get to know them before they leave since you’ll be caring for their little family member, or members.

I’ve had home owners tip me, which is always nice and appreciated. I’ve also had them pay for a month’s membership at their gym. Not everyone does this, or has the ability to do this, but it’s always appreciated. Oh, I did have one home owner bake and leave me cookies! I thought that was so thoughtful.

Having the home neat and organized with closet or drawer space is also always appreciated. Unfortunately, I’ve had month long sits where the host left me NO space to put my clothes.

Also, this is a funny one, but leaving more than 1 roll of toilet paper for a month long sit. Lol. I’ve actually had that happen.

But, what it boils down to, is that you feel appreciated, however that looks or manifests for the home owners. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. You know when the owners appreciate the time and care you take with their pets - after all, we’re all pet lovers here and I know when my little guys were alive, they meant the world to me.

One thing I would mention on the “Don’t do” side, is make sure you let the sitters know, upfront before booking them, if you have indoor cameras. I know this is listed in the guidelines for TH, but I’ve had several owners who didn’t pay attention to that.

Being someone who was stalked when I was in my 20’s, it’s very unsettling to me to feel as if someone can watch me 24/7. Other people it would be fine, but for me, it’s a deal breaker.

I hope this helps.


@SoloGal oh yes, bike riding is great fun - for those who can actually get ON a bike hahaha :biking_man: :face_with_head_bandage: Did a lot in my younger days, none since I came a cropper in Egypt and did a lot of damage to my knee. I’ll stick to walking to those great restaurants now lol

How nice! I am both a home owner and pet sitter, yet still got done great ideas from your post.

I like to ask the sitters what they like to eat and if I can pick up something for them at the grocery store so they have something at home.

It is nice to invite them a day or two ahead of the sit. Traveling is tiring and it is nice to get a chance to settle in before the instructions come flying at you.

Let the sitter have access to your laundry detergent, spices, baking supplies, condiments, etc. They shouldn’t have to buy those staples. If it runs out, they can replace if needed.

Throw away food that will spoil if you can. The sitters shouldn’t have to clean out your fridge of old food. A clean fridge is always welcome!

As homeowners, we clear out our computer, but leave a monitor and printer they can connect to. Sitters are allowed to use the printer.

The important thing is that the sitters are treated like guests, and not servants.

Great post!

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  1. clean house where you just arrive and relax. I only head like 3 sittings out of my around 28 where I feld the need to cleaning was the first thing i did once i arrived
  2. good detailed welcome guide
  3. use of a bicycle
  4. I had two sittings where there was a small set of tiny products like soap, cream ect as you find in a hotel (i never used it but it feld like they really cared about me feeling good)
  5. shared meals when I arrive. once a family member took me out for lunch during my sitting as she know I dont know anyone there
  6. little presents like chocolate or souvenirs from their travel. I just finished my sitting and they gave me cute little heart earrings. One heart for each of their pets.
  7. write a nice review long review when you are satisfied. I enjoy if there is written more than just a short “thank you” sentence

Beautifully put @christin :raised_hands:t3::two_hearts:

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These are all great suggestions, and what a lovely question, @Pgeiger ! These are a few of the things that have made some of my sits super stress free and/or memorable:

  • “We’ll meet you at the airport!” I know this is not always feasible, (and not always necessary if it’s a regular airport for you) but if you’re doing the sit without a vehicle, this is a very kind gesture and stress free way to start the trip.
  • As o few have mentioned, if the HO’s are leaving early in the morning on their trip, the ability to come in the night before to get familiar with the home, learn where everything is located, meet the pets, and ask any last minute questions that pop up about the house is quite helpful.
  • A CALENDAR! The function in the THS home guide is clunky. My favorite sit just makes an excel calendar for the time I am there with any pertinent happenings: gardener coming, trash & recycling go out, dog’s groomer coming, etc so I am always aware of what is happening and can see it at a glance.
  • Clear communication and expectations. Do you want updates everyday or do you want to be left alone in peace unless the house is on fire? Knowing what will make YOU feel at ease and stress free will help the sitters ensure they can deliver on that. :smiley:

Adding this separately because I know it’s not feasible for all HO’s (insurance regulations to add a driver, etc.) but if the option exists to add a driver temporarily onto insurance or their policy covers extra drivers (with international or domestic license) for those coming for a long sit, the use of a car really is a game changer. The cost of a rental car for a month+ can be prohibitive and if a sit is not in a walkable-to-everything location. Even if it is in the city, some of my best memories are taking a pet to a beach far up the coast to get OUT of the city (owner approved, of course).

Thanks for asking this kind question!

Don’t throw out good food! I can eat some, and I don’t mind doing throwing out the rest that I don’t use.

(But I agree with everything else.)


Just the fact that you are asking is so appreciated! I honestly believe that asking your sitter what they need to feel comfortable will simply make them feel really happy and supported. I’m not available to sit in NC and haven’t opened your profile yet, but already want to sit for you, as I know from the start that I’d feel appreciated ! :hugs:


Warwick is also worth a visit too, if you haven’t been there… I’m sitting in the area as well! I love it round here and would happily move here!

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Thank you, @Cuddleseaker. I’ve actually made hotel reservations in Warwick for after my sit, so I can sightsee there and in Royal Leamington Spa. They’ll be on my way to Birmingham to catch my next flight, to Dublin.

Things I really appreciate as a sitter:

  1. A clean house. If your house needs a deep clean (especially kitchens/bathrooms) please considering hiring someone. The worst thing is having to do a deep clean before I even use the kitchen because it’s too gross to cook in- oil coating everywhere with pet hair stuck to it was my worst experience. Also, please de-clutter.

  2. honesty about pet “quirks”. Learning the dog howls at night is not a fun surprise.

  3. Organized and clear house/pet guide

  4. Generosity. It can come in many forms, but what I appreciate most is when a homeowner tells me I can help myself to any food/condiments. I always buy and eat my own food but knowing I could use something if I forget an ingredient makes me feel welcome and appreciated.


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The calendar idea is great, thanks! I will use that the next time we have a sitter coming.

Excellent responses @e.lee :raised_hands:t3::raised_hands:t3:

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