In case you missed the FAQ Friday on Youtube you can read the answer her or skip down to the bottom of the page and watch the summed-up video.
This is a question I get asked a lot when I tell people I’m an international house and pet sitter.
How Does House Sitting Work?
The answer is quite simple. A situation arises when somebody wants to go on vacation, or they need to go on a work trip. They don’t want to leave their house empty and they don’t want to leave their pets at home alone (if it’s just some cats for a few days). Additionally, they don’t want to have to put their pets in a kennel. They need someone for home sitting.
That is when I come to their home as a dog sitter or cat sitter and take care of everything for them. As one of several trusted house sitters, I make sure their house is safe and secure, and their animals are loved and taken care of, so they don’t have to worry about anything while they are gone. In situations with long-term house-sitting jobs, I may have to water some outdoor plants and take care of a garden/yard if they do not have a gardener.
A professional house sitter is required to take care of homes and the animals that live there. They are not just limited to dogs, cats, and fish. Some people require house and pet sitters for farm animals, snakes, birds, anything. Depending upon the type of pets they have, and the requirement of the pets determines what the house sitter is required to do.
When I house sit, if they have dogs, I walk them 3 or 4 times a day depending on what they are used to. With cats, it’s more of just letting them inside and out and cleaning the litter box. Fish are super easy it’s feeding and cleaning the tank if required. I’ve also had to take care of birds a couple of times. Again, they’re pretty, just feeding them and cage cleaning when necessary.
Most house sitting jobs include pet sitting, but not always. When pet care is not required it is usually when the homeowner has a second home and the house sitter needed is house sitting abroad. Don’t think that house sitting is all luxury house sitting jobs, they usually are not.
The Pet Sitters Responsibilities
My house and pet sitting jobs encompass several responsibilities. I am not just a pet babysitter. The home needs to be kept clean and secure. I also keep all the animals and pets in their regular routines and their schedules. If they are used to being up at 6 am and going for a walk by 7 am because the owners leave for work by 8 am, then it’s my job to make sure that the pets stay in that routine. If it is earlier then I must do everything earlier. I once had a cat sitting job where I needed to be up at 5:30 am every day because one of the cats needed an insulin injection at 6 am and 6 pm every day. My responsibility is to keep everything how it normally is for all the animals until the homeowner returns.
Peace of Mind
The homeowners can then be on their vacation or away for their business trip, wherever they are, knowing that everything at home is taken care of for them. I communicate regularly with the homeowner while they are gone. This regular communication varies for each person and depends on how much information they want. For some, it may be daily, and they just want a quick little email or WhatsApp to see how things are going. For others, it’s every couple of days. I’ve had ones that have said “you know I’m gone for a week I’m going to be tough to get a hold of, so only contact me if something bad happens. I really don’t want to be connected to Wi-Fi or I don’t know if there will be much WIFI and there’s nothing I’m going to be able to do about anything while I’m gone”.
In all pet sitting assignments, the homeowner leaves me some emergency phone numbers and contacts for people if there is something that happens while they are gone.
So basically, the answer to the question ‘how does house sitting work?’, is I take care of the home and all the pets that are there while the owner is either away at work or on vacation and everybody’s happy.
Become a House Sitter
If you are interested in how to become a pet sitter go to my books/courses page here. There are house-sitting opportunities everywhere. There is long-term house sitting jobs, short weekend pet sitting opportunities, house sitting jobs international, house sitting jobs for couples, and even house-sitting for families. Read about all my house-sitting experiences here.