Pet sitting is like a tiny paid vacation…usually.
I haven’t slept in my own bed in over two weeks.
I do pet sitting and house sitting as a side job and since it’s the holiday season, it’s a bit busier than usual. I was at one house last week, then the day I finished up there, I came to a new house. Today is my last day at this house and I finally get to go to my own home and snuggle my own animals all day! And let me be perfectly clear: I don’t abandon or neglect my own animals in favor of caring for strangers’ animals. I go to my apartment at least once per day (usually two or three times) to spend a little time with the cats and bird while I’m on a job.
So, let’s talk about this house sitting gig for a minute… I got started in high school when my Spanish teacher needed someone to take care of her dogs and house while she and her fiance went on vacation. It was AWESOME as a teenager! It was like playing house – like being an adult but without the whole bills and job thing. About once a year I’d have the opportunity to stay at someone’s house and watch their pets – usually my parent’s coworkers or my teacher. Then, as an adult, I continued pet sitting for friends, and then my friend’s parents… Now, I have a business! I contract through Rover to be matched with people who are looking for a house/pet sitter in my area. I get to set my own rates and the specific services I provide and then people who are looking for a sitter can enter in what they’re looking for and search the database of sitters. If I fit their needs, they message me and send a request.
Most of the time, it’s families who are going out of town. This week it was a single man who had just moved into his house but was leaving for a business trip. We scheduled my stay and away he went. This house is pretty cool, just a normal sized, single level home, but it had sort of an industrial design feel. The design, in general, didn’t really give off a homey vibe, but to top it off, he hadn’t had a chance to settle in so there was no decor up or really any furniture. Just a work-from-home computer station (quite impressive!) and an armchair. Ok, I get it. I’ve moved plenty of times in my busy life and had to take months to actually make my place look like a home. But for some reason, this house creeped me the fuck out the first couple nights!
First of all, the dog – who was an absolute god damned angel – kept looking just off center from my face… like he would stand in front of me and stare at me, except he would be staring like just above my head. And that freaked me the fuck out!! Then, when we went to bed, I kept imagining that it was some sort of ridiculous trap – that, what if, this guy was a murderer and it was the plan to get me here and come in while I was sleeping and stab me to death?! WHAT IF?! I mean, no one knew where I was except for Rover; and they can’t tell if I’ve been killed and don’t show up to any of my jobs!
Jesus, Regina. Come on.
But this was the first and only time that I hadn’t let someone know the address I was staying at!
Honestly though, no one is going to register themselves on a website with their address and all their information just so they can kill unsuspecting animal lovers. NO BODY DOES THAT.
So, I slept really poorly the first couple nights. With the lights on. But, then I notified several people of my location and timeline and all was well.
Really, all I’m saying is that I sincerely love house sitting and it almost always feels like a staycation… I would recommend this to anyone! Just be careful… treat it like you would a Tinder date – keep your tazer within reach and always tell a few people where you’ll be!