Author Topic: Travel bug and caring for pets  (Read 4938 times)

Dawn

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Travel bug and caring for pets
« on: July 07, 2019, 06:19:27 PM »
I love animals and have "acquired" two more than I need. That story isn't important. I have a longing to go overseas again and live among the locals. The one big issue I have are my dogs. To some that may sound crazy but I do love them. Has anyone found a way to travel for more than a week vacation internationally and not have guilt over leaving your dogs? Is there a solution I haven't found? I don't think I can take them with me because of their age and trying rent, etc. with them. Plus it throws a level of stress when they are with me outside of familiar surroundings.
Having a house sitter for over a month .....hmmm?
No more pets after these pass but in the meantime, how can I travel and care for the dogs I have and love?

avrex

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2019, 06:31:30 PM »
Having a house sitter for over a month .....hmmm?

Sure, why not.

https://www.trustedhousesitters.com/

Villanelle

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2019, 06:44:52 PM »
It seems to me like there is a market of college students living with their parents (or roommates) who would love to live in a nice, quiet house for a month.  I don't think I'd want to pick a random college kid, but putting out word in my social circle to see if anyone knew of a responsible young person.  And of course there are also websites and groups that formalize this process. 

Goldendog777

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2019, 07:05:01 PM »
We have the exact same problem.  We have 2 older dogs, one with special needs that we can barely leave for 2 hours at a time (he can't hold it for more than that) much less leave for a few days.  We have left them at our vet before and also a pet resort and both times we regretted it because it took about 2 weeks for his system to get back to normal.  Plus he has no teeth.  You literally need to help him eat.
 We are in a place in life where we can travel, especially in the summer, but can't because of our older pets.  No more pets for a while after these  are gone!  Sorry, I don't have any advice....just empathizing I guess!

spartana

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2019, 09:22:52 PM »
Why not travel around North America - and Central and South America too - so that you can drive and take you beloved pups with you. This is what I did when I FIREd and wanted to be gone longer than a few weeks. You can rent a pet friendly place by the month in one or several places, and spend another month (or several) in transit.  Also check out Trusted Pet Sitters. I've never used them myself but several forum members have or were pet sitters themselves. ETA I guess its called Trusted House Sitters . https://www.trustedhousesitters.com/ They basicly exchange house and pet sitting for a free temp place to live.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2019, 09:38:33 PM by spartana »

oldladystache

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2019, 09:36:39 PM »
I have a deal with my ex. When I travel my dog stays with him. When he travels my dog and I move into his house and stay with his dog. 

If I didn't have him I'd try to find a neighbor who knows my dog who would keep him for me. I'd have to be available for their dog when needed. If it's a nice dog an the two get along it's really not much trouble.

reeshau

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2019, 02:42:40 AM »
We're a cat household, but have many dog households in the family.  Some with older dogs, some with special needs. (diabetic)  We will not kennel, as we have had bad experiences.  We don't have a full-time house sitter, but we do have a visiting service drop by 1x or 2x per day, depending on the length of our absence.

For kennels, the most successful people make kennels part of their dog's lives; i.e. they begin "visiting" the kennel as pups (or at acquisition) without waiting for travel, so both dog and human can get used to it.  Just like traveling in cars, make it "no big deal."  So if you don't want to swallow the cost or can't arrange a trade of house sitting, I would recommend developing a kennel "habit," gradually increasing the time gone to minimize the anxiety for both you and your dogs.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2019, 02:58:57 PM by reeshau »

happy

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2019, 02:58:10 AM »
Networking with trusted friends/family is the way to go if its at all possible. But often it's not.

We put our 3 young dogs together into a very reputable kennel when we had no other option for a variety of reasons. We were feeling very worried and guilty. But as far as we can tell they were very happy there, and whilst happy to see us again, did not seem over the top about being reunited. We will do it again if we need to. I suspect because all 3 were together it helped.
 

I was intending not to travel much in FIRE. We now have 3 dogs, 4 miniature goats, a cat and a guinea pig. Stuff happens and I have done a couple of trips and have more planned. Its OK whilst my adult children are around, but we might all want to do a trip together. This could get interesting.....


Sun Hat

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2019, 05:57:30 AM »
Ask your friends and family if anyone wants a dog for a while. A friend of mine did this when she was offered a job overseas for a year, and I leapt at the opportunity, since I love dogs but was wary of committing to owing one long-term.


totoro

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2019, 10:41:43 AM »
We used https://www.mindmyhouse.com/ when we went away for a longer period and it worked out great and cost us nothing other than the sign up fee, which I think was 25 - can't remember exactly.  I'm happily dog-sitting my friends dog for a month right now.  Maybe just put out the word or, if you are comfortable, sign up for this site or trusted housesitters.

Candace

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2019, 11:31:46 AM »
Another vote for trustedhousesitters.com. My husband and I are members and have used it to get house/pet sitters for several trips, even trips over a month. We also use it as house/pet sitters ourselves. It's great. We've scored free stays in London, Wales, Scotland, and many places in the US. We love animals and adore pet sitting as a way to extend our travel funds. We have made lifelong friends by pet sitting, both as home/pet owners and as pet sitters. Long before there were websites, I was pet sitting for friends here and there as well. It's a great thing to stay in a home rather than a hotel room, and to have pets to love, cuddle and care for. As a pet/home owner, I had peace of mind knowing there were people I trusted who were paying lots of attention to my cats and occupying the home while I was gone.

If you decide to put up a profile, here's some advice. Since you have at least one elderly pet, I would describe the duties of the pet sitter in a clear, loving way. Don't sugarcoat it but don't make it more complicated than it is. This may dissuade some people, but you didn't want them anyway. Your profile should highlight the attractions of your area and your home. House sitters are looking for fun places to travel to. There are also digital nomads who house sit as a lifestyle and aren't as focused on the exact destination. Make sure to arrange phone calls or video calls with people whose applications you like. Have them arrive a day before you leave so they can participate in doggie care before you leave. It's also nice to cook a meal to share with your pet sitters. Communicate about your expectations and desires about communication while you're gone. When I pet sit, I send pictures of happy pets at least once a day for the first week. Pet owners love their pets (as you know!), and they tend to appreciate the pictures and short texts letting them know all is well.

Do have a plan B ready in case something happens. A website like trustedhousesitters.com doesn't have an automatic backup if your sitter falls through or has to leave due to an emergency. A service like Rover can be a decent fallback, though it will cost you money.

Feel free to PM me if you want to chat more. Also, if you decide to sign up, please contact me or one of the other posters who referred you -- we can all get free months using a referral link.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2019, 11:33:31 AM by Candace »

Dawn

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #11 on: July 08, 2019, 02:28:12 PM »
I'm starting to feel more comfortable with all of the input. I guess it boils down to finding someone I am comfortable with and who my dogs like, too.
Thanks for the encouragement and suggestions. I'll let one of you know who uses the online services should I go that way.
Thank you!!!

Dawn

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #12 on: July 08, 2019, 03:00:55 PM »

Why not travel around North America - and Central and South America too - so that you can drive and take you beloved pups with you. This is what I did when I FIREd and wanted to be gone longer than a few weeks. You can rent a pet friendly place by the month in one or several places, and spend another month (or several) in transit.
Really like this idea, too! Thanks Spartana! 

TartanTallulah

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2019, 12:11:58 AM »
Ask your friends and family if anyone wants a dog for a while. A friend of mine did this when she was offered a job overseas for a year, and I leapt at the opportunity, since I love dogs but was wary of committing to owning one long-term.

This is where I'm at too. I'm fond of dogs but wouldn't commit to being a dog owner. I would be delighted to give a friend's animal a place to stay and lots of attention for several weeks at a time to let them go away.

Several people I know have bought motorhomes so that they can take their dogs (and multiple bicycles) on vacation.

spartana

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #14 on: July 10, 2019, 12:15:32 PM »

"Why not travel around North America - and Central and South America too - so that you can drive and take you beloved pups with you. This is what I did when I FIREd and wanted to be gone longer than a few weeks. You can rent a pet friendly place by the month in one or several places, and spend another month (or several) in transit."


Really like this idea, too! Thanks Spartana!
I eventually bought a mini van and car camped (although I like tent camping better) but found I don't like moving around often so picking an area and staying longer term seems to work better for me.when I had pets (sadly all gone now and no plans to get more).  It was easier as a solo traveler too because I could leave the dog(s) at "home" in the vacation rental house so I could go put and do more non-doggy things for several hours. I could also find a local dog sitter or board the dog for the day if I wanted to go somewhere further away from my base or overnight.

 FWIW I am a person who is extremely unhappy and uncomfortable being gone from my pets for longer than a week so finding other travel solutions where they could come with me worked best. You may be different so having a long term pet and house sitter is probably the best way to go.

Now pet free I will be doing more overseas backpacking/bikepacking trips. I tried bike packing/touring with my last dog and it was kind of a disaster although lots of people do it successfully.

MasterStache

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #15 on: July 11, 2019, 06:48:13 AM »
This really sucks and is actually a large part of our travel expenses. Our biggest dog isn't exactly "human friendly." (ironically he absolutely loves playing with other dogs) He came from a very abusive home and was found emaciated. He was on the "kill list" at the shelter before we rescued him. Noble cause on our end at the time but we failed to realize how it would impact us in the future. He does fine at the boarding facility we take him to and loves all the people there. It just sucks to not be able to have in-home doggy daycare.

Fishindude

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #16 on: July 11, 2019, 08:12:55 AM »
We no longer have a dog because we are gone too much.  It's hard on the pets leaving them for extended periods in boarding or with others.
We now get our "pet fix" from our friends and neighbors dogs.

SKL-HOU

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #17 on: July 12, 2019, 11:35:09 AM »
I have a petsitter that comes and stays at my house. I havent done more than 3 weeks though.

MayDay

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #18 on: July 13, 2019, 09:07:12 AM »
Ask your friends and family if anyone wants a dog for a while. A friend of mine did this when she was offered a job overseas for a year, and I leapt at the opportunity, since I love dogs but was wary of committing to owing one long-term.

I agree. My kids want a dog but I know who will be stuck doing the work. We borrow dogs when possible. But: I don't want poor mannered or ill dogs. If you allow your dog on furniture, it is not welcome at my house. If it needs let out to potty every 2 hours, no can do.

A Fella from Stella

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #19 on: August 09, 2019, 10:45:03 AM »
Daughter's friends went away for a week, and she was reliably there each day to care for their rabbit and bird. It can be done.

In fact, someone might really jump at the chance to take on this side gig.

SugarMountain

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #20 on: August 09, 2019, 10:54:25 AM »
We have a dog who does not do well at all with being kenneled. And as a large dog with some leash reactivity issues can't really be handled by just the friendly college kid.  Luckily, one of the trainers we had worked with now does pet sitting and will come and stay out our house.  Generally, we're kind of limited to one week trips though.

Two thoughts for the OP.  One would be to see if you can find some like minded people and take turns taking care of each other's pets, i.e. maybe you go to Europe for September while they house/pet sit for you and then they travel in January and you take care of their pets.  The other thought would be to limit your trips to 1-2 weeks while you have pets and use more conventional pet sitting services.  And I guess a 3rd thought if you're going to go to Europe for many months would be to go ahead and take them. I don't think the quarantine requirements are nearly what they used to be.  I wouldn't fly internationally with the dogs in the baggage hold during the summer, though.

dodojojo

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #21 on: August 09, 2019, 10:07:19 PM »
I lucked out and have two very good friends/catsitters.  I do pay by way of gift cards but it comes back around when I catsit for them.  However, I limit myself to two week max travel.  It's not really a big sacrifice since I work and my manager doesn't take more than a week himself.  And honestly I miss the little furballs too much to stay away long.

However, as much as I love them (and cats in general), I will not adopt anymore and have no plans to adopt when they are gone.  I hope they will love long happy lives--which will bring us into my mid-50's.  According to the calculators, that would be around FIRE for me.  And once I'm pet-less and FIREd, I'm going to do extended travel.

When the travel itch has been scratched, then I'll return to being a cat slave/dog ownder.

That's the plan anyway...who knows what will be.

Cassie

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #22 on: August 15, 2019, 08:04:13 PM »
We hire someone to live here. The longest we go is 3 weeks.  We also go on month trips and take them.

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #23 on: August 16, 2019, 11:54:00 AM »
This is yet another vote for trustedhousesitters.com.  I am currently spending a month in London pet-sitting a young dog.  July was spent in Leipzig, Germany with two cats.  I have also pet-sit in Newcastle, Bourton-on-the-Water, Edinburgh, Oslo, rural France, Berlin, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.  Between gigs I do the airbnb thing.

I don't charge for pet-sitting, but if you don't live in a high demand tourist area or if one of your dogs is either ill nor needy, you should think of it.  It will still be cheaper than boarding and you will less likely end up with someone who shuts your pet up in the kennel for hours at a time while they spend the day sight-seeing. 

A Fella from Stella

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #24 on: August 16, 2019, 12:07:49 PM »
Love this option and am going to see about becoming a trusted house sitter myself.

Edited to add: It seems I have to pay to become a sitter. The idea being that I can get a gig doing a StayCation, which would be pretty cool, but not what I'm open to right now.
« Last Edit: August 16, 2019, 12:12:19 PM by A Fella from Stella »

avrex

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #25 on: August 16, 2019, 03:33:39 PM »
It seems I have to pay to become a sitter.

I did some research on the different house sitting websites.  In North America, TrustedHouseSitters has more listings than the other sites (see image below).  In the UK, they have a plethora of house sitting opportunities.

Based on this, I signed up for TrustedHouseSitters.  (Ya, I didn't mind paying for the membership.)


Mtngrl

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #26 on: August 17, 2019, 04:07:26 PM »


Sure, why not.

https://www.trustedhousesitters.com/
[/quote]

I've used folks from housesittersamerica six times now for month-long trips away (some have been repeat sitters). They have done terrific jobs. My pets gets to stay in their own environment, get daily walks and lots of attention. The two sets we keep inviting back, in particular, are now loved by my dogs and while I miss them greatly while away, I rest easy knowing they're in good hands. The sitters we use came with lots of references and experience caring for pets -- and they truly love pets. We've had them stay a couple of times when we took the dogs with us and they always comment that they miss having a pet to look after.
Oh, and the service is free.

know10

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #27 on: August 20, 2019, 05:42:08 PM »
Any advice for signing up for trusted house sitters as a sitter? My spouse and I want to find a house sitting gig in a warmer climate - California would be ideal. I did the paid membership on mindmyhouse for a year and the only offer we got was a two week gig in Ohio. I did house sitting, pet sitting and house cleaning all throughout college just via my University connections, so it seems like that would work well on a profile to generate interest, so I was quite disappointed to pay for the service without any offers. We have two kids so I wonder if that's a deterrent for people. Is it worth it to try one more time on the trusted house sitters site?

sui generis

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #28 on: August 27, 2019, 10:12:12 AM »
Any advice for signing up for trusted house sitters as a sitter? My spouse and I want to find a house sitting gig in a warmer climate - California would be ideal. I did the paid membership on mindmyhouse for a year and the only offer we got was a two week gig in Ohio. I did house sitting, pet sitting and house cleaning all throughout college just via my University connections, so it seems like that would work well on a profile to generate interest, so I was quite disappointed to pay for the service without any offers. We have two kids so I wonder if that's a deterrent for people. Is it worth it to try one more time on the trusted house sitters site?
I haven't been a sitter myself but I've used the service (specifically mindmyhouse, even) and love it.  I do think the two kids might be an extra kink but have seen people work through it.  There are a couple of house sitting facebook groups (if you are on facebook) mostly comprising sitters and potential sitters where these kinds of questions get asked a lot and there are a lot of other resources for those getting started.  Have you checked those out?

Hula Hoop

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #29 on: August 27, 2019, 01:16:10 PM »
Our kids have been campaigning for a cat and I'm a cat person but one of the main reasons we don't take the plunge is precisely this.  We love travelling for long periods and imagine doing a lot of that during FIRE. But this could be a problem with a pet or pets.

Candace

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #30 on: August 27, 2019, 04:27:26 PM »
Any advice for signing up for trusted house sitters as a sitter? My spouse and I want to find a house sitting gig in a warmer climate - California would be ideal. I did the paid membership on mindmyhouse for a year and the only offer we got was a two week gig in Ohio. I did house sitting, pet sitting and house cleaning all throughout college just via my University connections, so it seems like that would work well on a profile to generate interest, so I was quite disappointed to pay for the service without any offers. We have two kids so I wonder if that's a deterrent for people. Is it worth it to try one more time on the trusted house sitters site?
We're on TrustedHousesitters as both sitters and as homeowners. We had a sitter who had an eight year old daughter. They were fine.

Assuming your kids are well behaved, then when you apply for pet sits, emphasize that. Also emphasize (assuming it's true) that your kids know how to be gentle and appropriate with pets.

Don't apply for sits in small houses or other places where there won't be enough bedrooms.

Please have a good handle on what your family can handle. I have secondhand knowledge of a situation where a single mom with two or three small kids pet sat for a household of four dogs, a cat and two small kittens. Things went south in a big way.

As someone who's chosen from different applications, what I want to know is that the sitters are responsible, loving and caring as well as decent housekeepers. If your family fits that description, then emphasize that on your profile and in your applications.

Good luck!

Edited to add: TrustedHousesitters has lots of listings in California.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2019, 04:41:08 PM by Candace »

Candace

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #31 on: August 27, 2019, 04:30:31 PM »
Our kids have been campaigning for a cat and I'm a cat person but one of the main reasons we don't take the plunge is precisely this.  We love travelling for long periods and imagine doing a lot of that during FIRE. But this could be a problem with a pet or pets.
If you live in a halfway attractive area, then a pet sit with one cat is like gold for house sitters. You'll get plenty of applications. This is because one cat is the least demanding situation (besides goldfish).

Hula Hoop

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #32 on: September 01, 2019, 09:39:45 AM »
Our kids have been campaigning for a cat and I'm a cat person but one of the main reasons we don't take the plunge is precisely this.  We love travelling for long periods and imagine doing a lot of that during FIRE. But this could be a problem with a pet or pets.
If you live in a halfway attractive area, then a pet sit with one cat is like gold for house sitters. You'll get plenty of applications. This is because one cat is the least demanding situation (besides goldfish).

Hmmmm...interesting.  We actually do live in an attractive area for tourists.  Our apartment is a mess though.

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #33 on: September 03, 2019, 08:00:13 AM »
Question for the folks using TrustedHouseSitters.com.  Do any of you live in small, rural towns?

The wife and I definitely have the travel bug, and we're also looking at getting a dog.  But I'm concerned about finding someone on THS who would want to sit for us.  We do live near some outdoor recreation opportunities, but it's not like it's Aspen or Jackson Hole.  We're planning a three week trip for next spring, and I'm having a hard time imagining that we're going to find someone who wants to spend that much time here. 

It looks like the only way to check it out is to pay the $119 fee and then hope someone takes the sit.

sui generis

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #34 on: September 03, 2019, 08:26:02 AM »
Question for the folks using TrustedHouseSitters.com.  Do any of you live in small, rural towns?

The wife and I definitely have the travel bug, and we're also looking at getting a dog.  But I'm concerned about finding someone on THS who would want to sit for us.  We do live near some outdoor recreation opportunities, but it's not like it's Aspen or Jackson Hole.  We're planning a three week trip for next spring, and I'm having a hard time imagining that we're going to find someone who wants to spend that much time here. 

It looks like the only way to check it out is to pay the $119 fee and then hope someone takes the sit.

You might check if there is a money back guarantee if no one accepts your sit? Also there are discount codes floating around out there. A Facebook group by the folks at house sitting magazine has some I believe.

To the substance of your question, I don't have a strong sense (I live in the opposite type of place so wouldn't have reason to know, myself) but I suspect you might still find some applicants. On those Facebook groups I feel like I often see people talking about doing sits "in the middle of nowhere" and how much they love it, or how to deal with certain logistical issues (like not having a car, the homeowner won't let them use theirs, but grocery store is 10 miles away).

Also, other sites have lower free to join, or even none for the homeowner. Though they also have commensurately less traffic. Still, this far in advance, you could give them a try. I got a few applicants each from posting on mind my house and house carers. Though, again, in a rural area, might be worth it to just go with THS and not getting disappointed on sites with less traffic.

Parizade

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #35 on: September 04, 2019, 10:13:25 PM »
I can recommend that you AVOID using Rover.com to find a dogsitter. My son's elderly dog got so stressed out when he kenneled her at his vet's she had a minor stroke so we started looking for a dogsitter. I used Rover.com to find a young couple who had good reviews, but when we went to their house for a "meet and greet" their dog flipped out and bit my son's dog's ear off!!!

At the time they apologized profusely and promised us that they were fully insured and our vet bills would be 100% covered. Then they found out insurance didn't cover meet and greet situations, so they backed off and started saying things like "we don't really know who started it" and "she's never done this before with other dogs so it must be your dog's faullt," and even went so far as to deny that their dog bit ours.

So, you know, use Rover.com at your own risk. I certainly don't recommend them.

avrex

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #36 on: September 05, 2019, 12:35:04 AM »
Question for the folks using TrustedHouseSitters.com.  Do any of you live in small, rural towns?

But I'm concerned about finding someone on THS who would want to sit for us.  We do live near some outdoor recreation opportunities, but it's not like it's Aspen or Jackson Hole.  We're planning a three week trip for next spring, and I'm having a hard time imagining that we're going to find someone who wants to spend that much time here. 


I think you should try it. 

Since your sit is so far in the future, the good news is there's still lots of time/opportunity for appicants to see your sit and apply.

I would feel confident that you get at least one applicant in that time.

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #37 on: September 06, 2019, 04:55:00 AM »
Thanks for the replies, sui generis and avrex.  At this point we've decided we aren't going to get a dog right now so we can avoid the whole pet sitting conundrum.  After our big trip in the spring, we'll re-assess whether our travel bug still outweighs our desire for canine companionship.

druth

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #38 on: September 07, 2019, 04:53:28 PM »
Thanks for the replies, sui generis and avrex.  At this point we've decided we aren't going to get a dog right now so we can avoid the whole pet sitting conundrum.  After our big trip in the spring, we'll re-assess whether our travel bug still outweighs our desire for canine companionship.

Maybe consider fostering dogs?  It's a shorter length commitment to a dog, and with our foster group they will find you dog sitters for you for free.  We just only get fosters between big trips.  We send our personal dog to a rover.com sitter to whom we are eternally grateful every time he watches our little hell-beast.

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #39 on: September 07, 2019, 05:57:34 PM »
Thanks for the replies, sui generis and avrex.  At this point we've decided we aren't going to get a dog right now so we can avoid the whole pet sitting conundrum.  After our big trip in the spring, we'll re-assess whether our travel bug still outweighs our desire for canine companionship.

Maybe consider fostering dogs?  It's a shorter length commitment to a dog, and with our foster group they will find you dog sitters for you for free.  We just only get fosters between big trips.  We send our personal dog to a rover.com sitter to whom we are eternally grateful every time he watches our little hell-beast.

We've thought about that.  We volunteer at the local shelter, so we would have plenty of opportunities.  But honestly, I think that once a dog comes through our door, it isn't going to leave.

Candace

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Re: Travel bug and caring for pets
« Reply #40 on: September 07, 2019, 06:11:23 PM »
Question for the folks using TrustedHouseSitters.com.  Do any of you live in small, rural towns?

The wife and I definitely have the travel bug, and we're also looking at getting a dog.  But I'm concerned about finding someone on THS who would want to sit for us.  We do live near some outdoor recreation opportunities, but it's not like it's Aspen or Jackson Hole.  We're planning a three week trip for next spring, and I'm having a hard time imagining that we're going to find someone who wants to spend that much time here. 

It looks like the only way to check it out is to pay the $119 fee and then hope someone takes the sit.
I don't live in that kind of town, but I know there are a lot of people who do housesitting as a lifestyle and enjoy different kinds of situations. They especially like long term sits for that reason. If you have internet and a reasonably comfortable house, you'll probably get applications.