All in a day’s work
Posted on 13 June, 2022
The role of a homesitter is to look after people’s homes and pets when they go away. Our homesitters love the job because of the variety of assignments, the chance to explore the UK, and an opportunity to spend time with pets.
Our homesitters have looked after most types of pets since we started from many different breeds of dogs and cats to chickens, spiders and snakes!
Sometimes the role presents challenges is out of the blue events happen, but on these occasions our homesitters always going that extra mile for our clients.
One great example of this was a New Year’s assignment in Scotland. Our client lived on the west coast of Scotland and planned to spend New Year’s Eve in London with friends. The couple booked a homesitter months in advance to look after their cat who did not like being left alone.
They thought they had everything covered. However, major flooding took place throughout the UK which prevented their homesitter from reaching them!
Their homesitter had been due to arrive in the afternoon so they could catch the sleeper train to London. However, despite her best efforts to reach them, she got stuck with roads closing all around her due to the flooding. The client agreed with the sitter not to put herself at risk to head back home, which she reluctantly agreed to do.
The client was relieved the homesitter was heading safely home but wondered if they would be able to make it down to London that evening to spend New Year with their friends. They needn’t have worried!
After calling us, we started working on Plan B straightaway. The couple hadn’t expected a backup plan because it was New Year, the weather was dreadful, and they live quite remotely in Scotland.
But within the hour we had confirmed that a gentleman homesitter from Lancashire would come. He was very experienced and could easily adapt to the assignment at short notice.
He had in fact volunteered as an emergency homesitter over the Christmas and New Year period as he thrives on new challenges and loves the excitement of receiving a phone call asking him to go off on assignment at short notice.
Despite the weather, his journey to Scotland was straightforward and the assignment was well worth the long drive with a beautiful location overlooking a loch. Our homesitter saved the day and the clients got to spend New Year’s Eve in London with friends!
Our clients have told us the top three benefits of using our services are, “knowing they will return to a happy pet and a tidy home,” followed by having “someone to look after their pets” and “keeping the house secure”.
For clients, the peace of mind of knowing their home and pets are in safe hands when they are away ensures they can relax and enjoy their holiday. And for those who have more unusual pets that can’t easily be taken anywhere a homesitter is a real lifeline.
This was the case for a London-based client and her family who have a pet Vietnamese pot-bellied pig and needed someone to care for him when they went away.
Pigs tend to be sensitive and temperamental animals and they also do not like to be moved so the family needed someone to live in their house and look after him and other pets including a dog, a corn snake, a gecko and a tortoise.
Some people can be unsure about looking after a pet pig – but they are actually very easy. The pig needed feeding every day and liked to be stroked – and after a root around in the garden he could be bribed back into his pen with a piece of fruit.
We found a homesitter couple who were happy to look after a pig, as well as the other pets. Their surname was Banks and after their first assignment the client always asked for them and even referred to them fondly as the Piggy-Banks!
These are just a couple of examples of what our homesitters can get up to. It is not always about the pets though; sometimes it is the home that stands out on a particular assignment.
One of our homesitters regularly homesits at a palatial property with grounds and its own lake right next door to one of King Henry VIII’s hunting lodges.
The variety of homes and pets mean it is an exciting role, especially for those who have retired but who are looking for a fantastic way to enjoy new experiences and see more of the UK. We are currently recruiting so if homesitting sounds like something you could do click here to find out more.