Post # 1
I am going away next week for a full week and a younger (25) girl I used to work with will be staying at my house with my dog. She has done this a few times in the past, but never for a full week.
She currently lives about 45 min outside of the city with her dad and brother, suffering through a horrendous commute. I live in the city and her commute is only about 15 min max from my house. Her bff lives a few blocks from me. She will live a fun city life! Basically, this is super convenient for her and she loves my house and my dog.
I know she’s doing me a HUGE favor- I really trust her and I am able to relax so much more knowing she is there with him. I also feel like it’s a nice break for her- easy access to her friends and work and a nice house with HBO/Showtime/Netflix.
In the past, I have given her $20 gift cards, bottles of wine and once paid her. I plan on leaving her a $25 gift card to Wawa (um, jealous of her for getting that!) and 2 bottles of wine.
Is that enough? Do I need to stock the fridge or anything?
Post # 3
If you’re not paying her, I would stock the fridge so she has food to eat for the week.
Post # 4
My best friend always watches our dogs when we go on vacation and I always make sure to have some of her favorite food items in the house for her. I always give her at least $100 but that’s because we have three big dogs and boarding them would cost us sooo much more.
Post # 5
Boarding my dog where I live would be $320 for the week. I’d at least stock the fridge if I had someone staying at my house.
Post # 6
@mamadingdong: You’re not paying her? I pay my cat lady $25/day just to come and feed my cat and play with him for 30 minutes lol. Lucky! I even pay my own sister to cat sit.
I would tell her she’s welcome to anything in the fridge, but not go out of your way to stock it for her since you don’t know what she likes etc.
Gift card is definitely a nice gesture. It sounds like it’s a win-win scenario so I don’t think you really owe her anything.
We leave out my cat’s dishes, brush, toys etc. and leave printed instructions on what food to give him, how much, etc. We also have a big long document that the cat lady provided us with to fill in which has stuff like vet contact info, our contact info (if she needs to reach us), emergency contact info, pet insurance info, picture of my cat (in off chance he escapes) etc.
Post # 7
Our best friends (a married couple) will be staying at our house to house sit and watch our puppy when we go on our weddingmoon. They are staying for 2 weeks, but they live in a small apartment and don’t have a car. They will have access to all of our vehicles, our 70″ TV, our house, our food, everything. I was wondering if I should also pay them on top of leaving the house fully stocked.
I’m interested in feedback on this thread 🙂
Post # 8
Typically, we never pay our friends to dog-sit our one dog. However, we also bring him to our friends houses. Also, they have dogs, so we just kind of have a mutual agreement to watch each others dogs when we are able to, with no payment involved. I think since their is no reciprocity here, b/c your dogsitter doesnt have a dog, the GC and wine is nice. Even though she is getting a better commute for a week and being close to her BF, I think stocking the fridge with her favorite foods would be a nice gesture!
Post # 9
I’ve had a friend stay at our place and watch our two dogs. Like you do for her, they get cable, netflix, video game systems, etc. I tend to leave the house not fully stocked, but I will go out and buy some foods that I know they enjoy (I don’t eat a diet that the average person would be gung ho about, so I try to keep that in mind! i mean, not everyone loves almond milk and i get that). I also typically will leave a gift card for take out at a local place or even pizza. The last time my friend stayed, I knew she would never accept cash, so I got her a gift card to Amazon, left her some bath goodies (they’re from Lush so what she didn’t take I would haev used happily!), a gift card to the grocery store, and a gift card for a take out place. I feel liek I also left her seomthing else, but I forget. They always have access to anything in our cupboards, and I keep plenty of good tea on hand so that’s aplus for this friend! we also let her bring her dog with her
Post # 10
@MsLobizon: I love your ideas, especially the grocery gift cards and the dinner out gift cards. They are on a strict budget whereas we aren’t, so I think this would be nice for them.
Just curious, is there anything you don’t leave out? For example, we have a well-stocked bar with some very expensive booze…A lot of it is just for show and I wouldn’t be happy if it was gone!
Post # 11
We have some close friends of ours who are a married couple and house/dogsit for us when we travel. Last time, it was 5 nights- similar situation, our apt is bigger and in a better location, but its still inconvenient for them. Last time, we left them 2 bottles of wine, a $150 giftcard for a fancy dinner (they’re both service industry folks so they rarely go out themselves) and some food in the fridge. They were super thankful!
Post # 12
@mamadingdong: we recently had friends stay at our (brand new) house and care for our two dogs.
We stocked the fridge, left them an extra $50 incase they ran out of something/we forgot something/they wanted something else, and left them a gift card for the movies for $30.
Post # 13
We go on short weekend trips every few months & have my borther or a friend stay at our house to look after our pooch. If we know they’re hurting we’ll pay them, but usually they are both more than happy to stay there because we’ve got a huge TV, our dog is very calm & cuddly, instant netflix & variety of cable channels, & a big house… We do try to make sure our fridge & cabinets are well stocked for them though, as well as adding in a bottle of liquor or 24 pack of beer…. If I have time & if we’re gone for more than just a weekend I’ll do my best to bake something homemade for them too- banana bread, cupcakes, challah, cheesecake….
Post # 14
Thanks everyone for the input. I will buy some staples for the fridge & leave some pizza cash in addition to the gift card & wine. I’m so appreciative of her and never want to feel like I’m taking advantage!
Post # 15
@BoxerLady: I had to actually think about this and take a peek around my house! We do always ask that they stay out of our bedroom. Not b/c there’s necessarily a lot of things off limits in there, but more b/c we get very weird about our bedroom. We do tell her to never worry about washing the sheets (she usually does though, blah!) but the washer and dryer are for her use if she wishes (she doesn’t have one that’s free or convenient in her apartment building). There are a few bottles of scotch that are off limits, and we put a little sign on the cupboard that they are in (and also verbally tell her – I doubt she’d touch them anyway, they’re not her style). We currently (and usually) have two beers in our kegerator and typically put a sign on it for her to help herself. I do also have a sign on a few foods in my cupboard that they are off limits, but that’s b/c they are very hard to come by in America, haha. Not sure if it’s important to note, but we toss any of my prescription meds that we don’t take iwth us in a locked box in our bedroom. Long story, but I have a relative w/ addiction issues who actually suggested that (initialy we got it for when he stops over. He probably won’t go digging, but he said that way IF he does, it’s totally off limits just in case).
Post # 16
I’ve done this for several friends…
When I felt most appreciated they (not all were done at the same time):
1) gave me $100 gift card to a store they know I like or to a restaurant I’ve been wanting to try
2) Leave me a list of instructions about how to operate the thermostat, TV remotes, washer/dryer, dishwasher, etc. – and any other things about the house (made me feel at home and not guessing). They also left important numbers for the pet: vet, etc.
3) Told me to make myself at home, help myself to any and all food (nothing was particular stocked, but if there was something that looked interesting, it was nice to be able to eat it.
4) Made sure the bed I was sleeping in had clean sheets, towels, etc.
As fun as it is to be in a different space, it IS an inconvenience to change your life.
Oh – and a very sincere “THANK YOU” is always nice too. 🙂