Your help needed to improve the Welcome Guide

I certainly agree about the value of having printed Guide on paper and many sits we have done have one whcih is very helpful.

The problem has been the printed Guides are often out of date.

Using the THS Guide, if something changes, it’s easy to quickly change it on THS so it is always current.

However, if someone prefers to use their own Guide, while having a printed on paper Guide in the home, while it can be very helpful, it must be up to date.

Using the online Guide can also prevent disagreement for potential liability on the HO or sitter.

With that said, it could even be a choice of Guide of the one on the THS site or one written by the HO.

If written by the HO, then I believe providing a PDF of it is necessary. Then you have a document the HO can update on their own and provide an electronic current copy. If you wish to provide a printed on paper copy, just be sure to update it, too, as it can be confusing when they disagree and possibly dangerous to the pets or home.

Another plus of the Guide on the THS site is sitters know where to look for what information.

I said the Guide must be completed at time of application. Why, you may ask ? (go ahead… ask) We’ve had sits where the HO said they would complete it later and it was only minimally done with much important information missing.

On one of our sits it was for a HO who had used THS numerous times as a HO in Europe and was their first time in the US so we felt they would know how important it is for the sitter to know how to properly care for the pets and home.

The HO told us they didn’t have the Guide completed but it was a small home and everything was very simple.

Yeah, right!

When we got there we began by meeting the 2 cats and then being told about the 4 different foods that needed to rotated in a certan way at various times and then shown the very detailed way of watering different plants outdoors! Bottom line: it was only slightly less complicated than launching a rocket into space (and we wanted to do it better than Bezos did recently)!

My wife couldn’t write fast enough and we had to make a spreadsheet to have a chance of following the “simple” instructions!

I prefer the standard THS Guide but one written and provided by the HO can be fine as long as it is current, complete and an electronic copy i.e. PDF is available.

So, one other improvement needed by THS is ONE button to print a PDF of the entire Guide which the sitter can save or easily print a paper copy. That way it’s available even if offline. Many sits are in locations with no cell or online service.

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Another related improvement is to provide a means for an HO to upload a PDF as a guide… This would address most of the concerns raised by @Wetravel while also not constraining HO to the limited & clunky guide template standard to THS.

PS, not sure how this thread content got under this topic, probably ought to be moved to guide related thread!


Suggestions for improvements are off topic but brought up here because THS is testing the 5 pause as an “improvement” so they opened the door.

There are suggestions and feeback in other topics

To kind of start fresh in that area I just created two topics and put a few of these ideas in:
Listing Requirements Needed
Search Improvements Needed

Please share your ideas, too

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Homeowner cannot print it and I really need a copy of this. Ideas?

You can copy & paste the details in to a Word doc & then print it

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Thanks. I appreciate this info!

An annoyance for me. Supposedly a security feature that sitters can’t print them. It just means we need to do a whole bunch of work to get an offline copy. I don’t agree with blocking the function.


I sometimes take screenshots of information I’ll be needing a lot. If it’s a schedule, like medication, for instance, I usually write that down in hard copy somewhere too.

Take a photo of welcome pack important info with phone?

@ArjunaTHS I realize you asked the question about improving the Welcome Guide quite a while ago. However, in reading posts since then there are areas that I don’t think are specifically covered that may be helpful to include.

  1. Guidance to address the ‘help yourself to anything’ often said, as a gesture of kindness by an owner, but sadly sometimes grossly taken advantage of, or just misunderstood. Or, of course, the opposite, if an owner is not open to their food/beverages being used, it’s also better to be clearly stated. Maybe some check-off boxes of common categories could be included.

  2. What areas of the home are off limits, and an option to explain why, if relevant e.g. work-from-home and privacy of files.

  3. If a vehicle is being made available, the understanding about costs - both for any additional insurance coverage, or if there is a collision or theft, for example.

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