What's expected of you as a pet sitter?

Danielle Petch
A woman sitting on the sofa cuddling a small brown dog

Love animals and exploring unique new places? Then good news — it sounds like you could become a dog sitter! 

There are many reasons why the members of our pet-loving community choose to become dog sitters. For one, becoming a dog sitter is a great way to explore unique new places — with the company of an adorable furry friend by your side!

But there are a lot of responsibilities involved when it comes to being a dog sitter. After all, you’ll be tasked with the important role of caring for someone's beloved pet. So, if you’re thinking of delving into the wonderful world of in-home house and pet sitting, then take a read below to find out what exactly is expected of you as a dog sitter…

What’s expected of you as a dog sitter? 

1. Firstly, you must be a pet lover!

Sure, it sounds obvious! But in our pet-loving community, being a bonafide animal lover is first and foremost one of the most important steps in becoming a dog sitter.

Our caring community is made up of hundreds of sitters who genuinely love spending time with animals — it’s just part of the reason why our trust-based, money-free exchange works so well. And what better way to explore somewhere new than with an adorable dog by your side?

Trusted tip: Let your love for pets shine through in your dog sitter profile to greater your chances of securing a great dog sit

2. Be responsible, respectful and reliable

Many sitters house and pet sit because they love the unique travel experiences that it offers, but with that comes big responsibility.

All members, when joining TrustedHousesitters, are asked to accept our code of conduct. Here, sitters agree (amongst other things) to follow the pet owner’s instructions, be available for the entirety of the agreed sit dates, and of course, make every effort to ensure extra love and care is taken with the owner’s pets and home.

When a pet owner hands over the keys to their home, they're trusting you with their beloved pets and most prized possession. So while you will get the chance to discover new and exciting destinations, remember: looking after the pets and the home should be your number one priority.

A small white dog being petted on a brown leather sofa

Happy pets is what TrustedHousesitters do best!

3. Keep up the pet's regular routines

Routine is important for any pet, and one of the main reasons an owner will choose an in-home dog sitter is that, unlike traditional kennels, it keeps their pets at home and in their usual routines, meaning they're much less likely to feel stressed or disrupted while their owner is away.

Your owner should include everything you need to know about your pet's routine in their handover and Welcome Guide, but you should also ask them questions about anything you're unsure of ahead of the sit. Things you might want to keep in mind are what time the pet usually has its breakfast and dinner, when they usually go for their walk, what time they usually wake up/nap, and whether they need to take any daily medication.

4. Communicate well (and often) via the app

Communication is key when it comes to being a successful dog sitter. As well as helping to build trust and put the pet owner’s mind at ease, good communication will help you to set and manage expectations. Plus, the more you chat with the owner and ask questions, the better equipped you’ll be to care for their four-legged family members. 

Most pet owners love to receive photos and videos updates of their pets while they’re away. Some owners prefer a daily update, some weekly — and others are just happy to hear from you if there are any emergencies they need to be aware of, so it's best to discuss in advance how often updates should be sent.

We recommended downloading the TrustedHousesitters app, where you can communicate via our secure and private messaging system, both before, during and even after a sit. 

5. Treat the pets (and the home) as your own

Just as you’d expect someone coming into your home to treat it with love and respect, you should do the same when going on a new house sit.

The pet is the main reason you’re there, so be sure to give them lots of extra love, care and cuddles while their owner is away. Likewise, be sure to take good care of the home and the owner’s belongings, and aim to leave the home as clean as, if not cleaner, than when you arrived.

After all, what better way to welcome your owner back home than with a clean, sparkling home and a happy, healthy pet? 

How to become a dog sitter

So, you now know what’s expected of you as a dog sitter. But where do you begin? 

Signing up for a pet sitting service is your first port of call. Pet sitters, like those on TrustedHousesitters, exchange home and pet care for the chance to stay (for free) in unique places around the world. For just a one-off membership fee costing less than an average night in a hotel room, sitters get unlimited worldwide house sits caring for adorable animals in places they’ll love.

So, if you’ve been thinking about becoming a dog sitter and opening the door to a world of opportunities (and wagging tails wherever you go!), then why not begin by exploring all of our exciting house and pet sits? You can sniff around our blog for more tips and tricks on getting the most out of your TrustedHousesitters membership .

Ready to begin your pet sitting adventure? Join today and explore thousands of house sitting opportunities caring for adorable pets in places you'll love.

And don't forget to join our Community Forum — the perfect place for those sharing a love of pets and travel to come together! Chat with like-minded individuals and ask questions, advice or support as you begin your house and pet sitting journey.

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