Caretaking with pets is possible, but don't take for granted that your animals are included in the caretaker offer. Some ads specify dogs and horses are welcome. We’ve had Help Wanted ads posting that goats are welcome!
Some property owners do like animals. Some don't want them in their homes. Others don't want them anywhere on the property.
Others like animals, but still don't want the caretaker's pets in the home or on the premises. It could be because of allergies. It may be fear that the caretaker's animals will bother the owner's animals. Some campgrounds have "no pet" rules. If you are caretaking for a business, their insurance may prohibit animals.
And, let's face it – animals shed and make messes. Many homeowners just don't want the mess.
But that doesn't mean that if you have pets you can't work as caretakers.
We have had offers where the property owners welcomed us to bring our critters into the house. We usually have Help Wanted ads on the website specifying that caretakers are welcome to bring horses.
Caretaking with pets can be an advantage. Some property owners recognize that dogs add an additional layer of security.
Caretaking with pets sometimes means making compromises. We are often welcome to live fully in the home. However, our pets aren't. Therefore, we usually take our RV along. The cats and dog live there comfortably. We sleep in the RV, but use the house during the day.
The one exception we had to this was a seasonal house sitting stint during a cold winter. The agreement was that the property owner would provide us housing. It wasn't practical for us to heat the travel trailer during the winter. Besides, since this was a long term situation, we wanted our cats to live where we lived.
The business owner would have preferred us not to have pets. In this case, we stayed firm that they provide housing for all of us – dog and cats, included. If they were unable or unwilling to do this, then we would have passed on this caretaking opportunity.
In fact, we did turn down one great caretaking offer because we couldn't have our animals inside. It was a winter position for a couple months, in an area where temperatures typically remain below zero. We understood and respected their position of not wanting animals in the house. They understood that animals are part of our family and couldn't live outside.
That mutual respect made it possible for us to return there to caretake during the warmer months. Caretaking with pets wasn't a problem then because they could stay in our RV.