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Old 01.02.2011, 23:08
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Sites?/organisations? re. House+Pet sitting in exchange for rent-free accomodation

Hi,

I was wandering if in the Zurich region occasionally there are people looking for a long term dog/house sitter. I've heard of people living in a house rent free in exchange for dog sitting when the owners need to go away for an extended period of time such as 6 months. If so is there a website or organisation that arranges such thing or a place adverts are put up by people looking for sitters.

Many thanks for any suggestions.
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Old 01.02.2011, 23:11
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Re: House sitting in exchange for Pet Sitting

I am not really sure, but may be worth trying Alisha at
http://hundewelt-zuerichsee.blogspot.com/

She has a whole dog business which is amazing with doggie day care so she may know when someone has a need for extended dog sitting.
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Old 01.02.2011, 23:31
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Re: House sitting in exchange for Pet Sitting

My apologies I submitted this post forgetting to edit my title, it should have been 'House and Pet sitting in exchange for free Rent'. I'm interested in looking to live rent free in exchange for looking after the home and pets whilst away for extended periods of time. Works out cheaper for an owner then putting pets in kennels etc.
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Old 01.02.2011, 23:33
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Re: House sitting in exchange for Pet Sitting

Got it. Sorry about that!
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Old 01.02.2011, 23:36
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Re: House sitting in exchange for Pet Sitting

No problem, my fault! Have requested if the post can be deleted so I can repost it.
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Old 02.02.2011, 00:18
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Re: House sitting in exchange for Pet Sitting

Beam, just a heads-up.


ETA: I just re-read your post, and realized that you are offering this service, not looking for a sitter yourself. In that case, you need to understand the TSchV requirements for dog sitters. Dog care is now a regulated activity in Switzerland, unlike in many other countries.

---

Be aware that if a sitter is looking after a dog, qualifications and registration with the cantonal Veterinäramt may be required under the TSchV. Whether 'free rent' is considered compensation - which is part of what would trigger the TSchV compliance issue - is a whole big can o' worms...

In any event, if an unpaid sitter cares for one's dogs for more than three months he/she would be required to do the SKN with each dog in his/her care. And, if a sitter is solely in charge of a dog for more than three months, the owner may be required to add the sitter to the ANIS register. In essence, after three months the sitter may be viewed as having an owner's responsibility and liability.

The owner's insurer may or may not cover a third party working in the home - this is an issue in cantons with mandatory liability insurance (true in most cantons, including ZH) for those in charge of a dog. The sitter may need a professional liabilty policy if the owner's liability policy restricts paid third parties.

---

None of this is an issue if the sitter is looking after cats or other animals - only dogs. Lucky cat and critter owners.

Last edited by meloncollie; 02.02.2011 at 01:12.
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Old 02.02.2011, 08:54
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Re: House sitting in exchange for Pet Sitting

We very rarely delete Threads which have answers as it is really not fair on the folk who have taken the trouble to answer it.

It has to be clear that you are not seeking a job, but information as where to look for this sort of thing - otherwise this would come under the Market Place Rules and you are not yet eligible to post there.

Hope this title suits the OP. It took me long enough to think it out!
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Old 02.02.2011, 09:43
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Re: Sites?/organisations? re. House+Pet sitting in exchange for rent-free accomodatio

I just wanted to add - I am on a site called "Housecareres" - though there are rarely any listings in Switzerland. Perhaps because of the regulations. However, I have seen plenty in France and Italy - not sure about Germany. If you google "house-sitting" or "house-caring" you can usually find some sites - but again, whether or not you would find anything in Switzerland - I cannot say. Good luck. And would actually like to hear if you do find something - as I like this set up as well. Thanks!
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Old 08.02.2011, 01:41
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Re: Sites?/organisations? re. House+Pet sitting in exchange for rent-free accomodatio

Many thanks for the replies guys, they were very interesting and helpful. I'm also able to horse sit by the way, I wonder if there are any opportunities for that!? Funnily I was saying to my girlfriend if dog sitting is too complicated in Switzerland perhaps we can look after other pets as suggested, for example someone's parrots... later on that day we funnily enough came across an advert to sit 3 parrots in Zurich! I must admit I'm not an expert avian sitter but perhaps the feathered housemates would make for some chatty companions!
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Old 08.02.2011, 11:42
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Re: Sites?/organisations? re. House+Pet sitting in exchange for rent-free accomodatio

Beam, may I ask what your motivation is in coming to Switzerland?

If it's about finding work, why not do it properly?

(FYI, the going rate for a professional dog sitter who moves into a client's home to care for the animals is CHF 200+ per day.)

There is a huge demand for qualified dog sitters who are working legally, you would probably have as much work than you wanted. Qualifications, coursework, certifications from you home country might be acceptable - you'd need to contact the BVet to get a ruling.

There is less demand for live-in cat/ small animal sitters, as cats/critters do not generally require the same level of time-consuming care. Often people have friends look in, or book one of the many housesitting services already available here - these stop by once a day to water plants, take in mail, check up on things - and feed/play with the cat. You may find work as a cat/critter sitter, but your chances are far greater if you are prepared to sit for dogs.

The problem with 'Schwarzarbeit' is one of trust. If someone prefers to work casually or doG forbid, illegally... how can I trust him/her with the keys to my house, or more importantly with the care and well-being of my beloved pets?

I'm probably the kind of client you are looking for, a pet owner who needs to travel frequently. But because of the level of responsibility involved in caring for my dogs, I need things done in a very specific way, I'm a pretty demanding client - for which I am ready to pay very well. In fact, I prefer to pay my sitter - I would be uncomfortable with a casual arrangement, as that leaves me in a rather risky position. Many pet owners - your potential client base - feel the same.

This is why if you are focusing on pet care I would urge you to set up a proper business. If you have the skills and experience you could do quite well.

Just a thought... best of luck to you.
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Old 16.02.2011, 16:03
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Re: Sites?/organisations? re. House+Pet sitting in exchange for rent-free accomodatio

Thanks Meloncollie,

I don't know how I missed your post there earlier, that is really great info! I'm getting in a contact with a vet friend now over here in Ireland to look into that. I'm interested working in Switzerland (I'd like to live near Zurich) mostly because I just really like the life over there, I've always wanted to live there. I love working with animals and children, but I'm still improving my basic German so I'm looking at ways of expanding my opportunities whilst I start to pick up the local spiel as it were. I'm also applying for some TEFL teaching work. Although I've cared for dogs and horses for much of my life, not to mention other animals, I definitely prefer to go down the official route so yeah that's a great idea, I'm a UK citizen so visas etc are no problem for me.
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