27 answers

How Much to Pay Pet Sitter

When we go out of town next month for 3 nights, we're asking the son of a friend of ours to house/pet-sit. They are family friends, and I talked to the dad about it already to be sure he would be alright with it. His son is almost 17 and is extremely responsible. I've known him for 10 years. I asked the dad if he thought the son would be interested in taking care of the house and pets for us, and he said yes; I asked what he thought I should pay, and he said his son would be happy with free cereal (he was no help). I don't know if the son will be staying over-night or not. I'll leave that up to him. Here are his duties.

Feed 3 dogs twice a day. Let them outside at least every 10 hours. They can stay outside if it isn't too hot, but it's probably going to be hot unless we get lucky and it rains. Then he would have to deal with cleaning muddy paws.

Feed 2 cats. We'll clean the catbox before we leave and when we get back, so he won't have to mess with that.

Feed a pig (outside) twice a day, very easy to do.

Feed ducks once in the evening. Don't worry about it if it's raining. The neighbors feed them, too, so they won't starve if we don't feed them.

Feed fish in tank once every evening.

Water plants outside once. I'll put all the potted plants in one area to make it easier.

So, what do you suggest? He's the kind of kid who will happily do it for free, but I won't take advantage of him. Money is tight, so I want to pay as little as I can, but still be fair. Thanks for your input. I really appreciate it!

1 mom found this helpful

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Featured Answers

Hi A.,

We have a friend who is on vaca right now & she has a young girl (just graduated h.s.) staying with her 2 dogs & 2 cats. She's paying her $25.00/day.

With 2 dogs and 1 cat I paid friends $100 for a week. There is a lot more work that you are asking this kid to do, so I would recommend $50- $75.

Hi A.,

I have a diabetic cat and so I pay about $15-$17 per visit (twice a day) for someone to come by test his blood and give him insulin, feed him, scoop his box and spend some time giving him some attention. Hope this helps.


More Answers

How long will it take him to do all of these chores? Think about it in terms of an hourly rate (of about $7.00 to $10.00 an hour). If he has to spend an hour in the morning AND another hour in the evening, then you need to pay him accordingly.

It's sad that the days of just helping a friend in need are just over with. It's all about the buck these days. Of course, you could just discuss it with him and ask him if $7.00 a day is appropriate (that is what I personally would like to pay).


With 2 dogs and 1 cat I paid friends $100 for a week. There is a lot more work that you are asking this kid to do, so I would recommend $50- $75.

I usually figured what it would cost to board the pets and pay around 1/2 of that. Since he is coming twice a day, my first impulse is about $15 a day - obviously less if you are going to feed them in the morning before you leave or in the eventing after you return.

My daughter was paid $10.00 an hour for pet sitting. The family wanted her to go to the house 2 times a day and stay a total of 2 - 3 hours. They wanted her to feed the cats and pet the cats if they came out of their hiding places.

She was pleased to receive $10.00 per hour.

When we have a pet sitter, it's $20/day. That's for 2 dogs and a cat. He stays overnight, feeds twice a day, maintains clean water, and lets them outside morning and night. I make sure there is plenty of food in the house, or I leave grocery money.

That is kind of a lot to do, so I'd think maybe somewhere between $7.00 & $10.00 per day? I don't know. My kids (9 & 7) helped the neighbor out by feeding their cat twice a day and they were WAY overpaid. I think she gave each of them $15.00 (for 1 week). I told her that was way too much, especially for such young kids, and her hubby agreed. But, at 17, and that's a lot of pets to watch and take care, I think 7-10 would work, and make sure to have food for him if he's going to stay overnight.

We use our neighbor's son when we go away and pay him $10 a day. We have several animals, as well, both inside & out. Hope that helps.

when i look at paying teenagers i think that if they go get a job at mcdonalds they would get minimum wage which is something like $6.25. i would say add up the hours you think he will work and then pay him about
$6 to $7 per hour.
kids are used to not making much money. it may not sound like a lot to you but to a teenagers that has no income, money is money.

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