Consider adopting a new fur-family member

Adopt a pet

While its strongly advised to never give a pet as a surprise gift to a friend or relative, adopting a fur-friend into your home could be your festive wish this year. If you’re considering welcoming a dog, kitty or other pet into your home this year, there’s many reasons to consider adoption.

According to RSPCA, over 19,000 dogs, more than 35,000 cats and over 40,000 other animals were received by RSPCA shelters and sites nationally during 2021/22. Of the animals they rescue, Pet Rescue recorded 85% pet adoptions in the same period with Victorians taking over Queenslanders for the highest rate of pet adoptions.

There are many deserving pets that are looking for a place to call home however there are some things to consider before you dive into the role of a new pet parent or welcome a new fur-kid to your home.

  • Lifestyle: How will your pet fit into your lifestyle? Consider how your pet will be cared for if you have to travel. There are animal-loving pet sitters available across the country to help you on that front. Also think about exercising the pet. Are you able to go on daily walks with your dog or provide stimulating activities for your kitty or guinea pig?
  • Costs: Depending on the size and breed of the pet, consider the costs to feed and provide shelter.
  • Space: Is there ample room in your home our outdoors for your pet to have their own space to retreat to with toys, food and water when they need some time on their own?
  • Security and Safety: Is your home set up to ensure your pet can’t get out if frightened? Research micro-chipping and an ID tag for your pet to ensure they are returned home, if they accidentally get lost.

Of course, there are many, many benefits to adopting a pet pal.

  • Health and wellbeing: As we all know, pet provide companionship, and the drive to get out and be active to keep our minds and bodies healthy. Pets are known to increase social connections, reduce stress and improve our moods. Not only are these benefits for humans adopting pets, but also for pets who are getting their second chance at life.
  • Micro-chipped and desexed: Often when you adopt a pet from a shelter, they are already micro-chipped and desexed by the rescue group.
  • Matured in behaviour: Adopting a pet from a shelter means that they have been around other animals and generally are more socially mature and may also have toilet training complete or underway.

There are many rescue groups across Australia that can help connect you with a pet pal that is looking for their forever home. This festive season, consider pet adoption for a new or additional fur-kid to benefit you and your furry companion.

 

An Australian white Christmas for nature lovers

 

Australian White Christmas

If you want to experience the joy of a white Christmas this year without breaking the bank, here are some out-of-the-box ideas to help you get your wish right here in Australia.

Bright, white filled skies

The Australian Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo, with its large white wings and distinctive yellow crest, is an iconic white presence in Australia. Witness the spectacular sight and sound of these birds in large flocks. Some of the best places to get up close with a Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo are along the River Murray in South Australia, and in the Adelaide plains including Adelaide and the Mount Lofty Ranges. These large, mostly white birds are also a tourist attraction in Lorne in Victoria which lies along the Great Ocean Road. It is also a hotspot where these beautiful birds gather and willingly pose for selfies with visitors..

White sandy beaches

Australia boasts some of the whitest beaches, perfect for experiencing the essence of a white Christmas. Lucky Bay in Cape Le Grand National Park, Western Australia, is renowned for having the country’s whitest sand. National Geographic lists Hellfire Bay in Cape Le Grand National Park (WA), Whitehaven Beach (QLD), Hyams Beach in Jervis Bay (NSW), and Squeaky Beach in Wilsons Promontory National Park (VIC) among the beaches with the whitest sand. Relaxing on the white sandy coastline of an Australian beach is an unparalleled way to enjoy a white Christmas Down Under

Snow-capped mountains

While we won’t be seeing the snow-capped landscapes of the northern hemisphere, there may be a chance that you can catch a glimpse of snow-capped mountains in our land down under. In February 2023, some alpine regions of Victoria and New South Wales endured cold blasts towards the end of the summer season, and while a rarity, it may be worth checking in to online snow cams to monitor local conditions.

To find a place to call home close to one of the many places you could experience a white Christmas in Australia, head to Mindahome.com.au for a list of house and pet sitting positions available.

 

 

Where to find the best Spring blooms in Australia

An Australian Spring brings a richness of colour, fresh fragrance and some of the best visually attractive landscapes that one could ever witness. Here are just some of the places to visit for a spring-time extravaganza.

Wildflowers in Western Australia

Being home to over 12,000 species of floral varieties, Western Australia can truly be considered wildflower country. In fact, 60% of the flowering species in Western Australia cannot be found anywhere else on the planet! From city parks, through to bushland and coastal regions, wildflowers bloom throughout the seasons to ensure consistent floral sensations.

Yellow fields in NSW’s Riverina region

As you wind your way through the charming towns of the NSW Riverina region, you’ll be taken back by how the lush green paddocks turn to striking seas of yellow thanks to new growth of Canola. Take in the sights, tastes and sun kissed colours as you meander through shires of Coolamon, Junee and Temora on the Canola Trail and enjoy the scenic wonder with the contrasts of green and yellow landscapes

Country charm and colour in from the cities through to regional towns

One of the most visually, vibrant spectacles of spring is that of the beautiful purplish blooms of the Jacaranda trees that drown streetscapes throughout the season. Visitors flock to the streets of regional towns such as Grafton in NSW to see these majestic trees lining the streets with opulent colour. Sydney has its own Jacaranda Trail where you can seek out pops of purple from the city to the suburbs.

Lush gardens and blooming buds in Victoria

Head to the Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne to see the stunning cherry blossoms bloom in Spring, or take a drive out of town to the Dandenong Ranges Botanic Garden where you’ll be immersed in lush greenery and foliage as well as spectacular colour as Spring brings new growth.

These are some of the places to witness the beauty of Spring in Australia. For a budget friendly holiday option, house and pet sitting positions are regularly listed in MelbournePerthSydney, and regional NSW to provide the perfect base to explore the rest of the region during Spring.

Holidaying away from the hobby farm – what you need to tell your sitter

Everyone needs and deserves a break, but holidaying away from your much loved and cared for hobby farm could present some initial trepidation. The key to having the peace of mind that your homestead, animals and harvest are being cared for in the same way you would do yourself? Communication. Here are some of the things that you should tell the house and pet sitter before you head away.

Daily routines and responsibilities – Share the daily routine schedule in relation to feeding animals, and tasks to do around the home and farm such as mowing the lawn, harvesting eggs, fruits, and other crops. Ideally, you will have the house and pet sitter stay a few days at the farm before you leave to ensure they understand expectations of chores and tasks around the farm.

Animal care – Introduce the pet sitter to animals so they have an understanding of the unique personalities of each pet and animal, and be sure to outline the care they require. Provide specific instructions for animal care if it’s required, such as administering medication or grooming. Also inform the sitter of any pests or predators that may pose a risk to animals on the farm.

Emergency contacts – If your property is in a remote location, ensure the house and pet sitter has a list of all the emergency contacts, including neighbours, local authorities and vet. Go through the emergency procedure for a variety of potential situations such as bushfires, floods, animal illness or if the sitter suffers an injury.

Equipment and maintenance – Providing detailed instructions and going through equipment use and maintenance is critical for pet sitters unfamiliar to farm life, and even for those who could use a refresher. Ensure house and pet sitters are aware of where tools, oils and spare equipment are kept for easy troubleshooting if it’s required. Provide practical instruction about how to use lawnmowers, tractors and irrigation systems. Taking a bit of extra time to provide the detail and practical know-how will provide peace of mind for a relaxing time away from the farm.

House rules and security – Outline any specific house or farm rules and security measures that are in place such as security cameras and alarm systems. Discuss mail collection, garbage disposal and how to secure fences, sheds or the homestead. It’s also a good idea to mention if other people may visit the property while you’re away, such as neighbours, tradespeople or the vet. Advising the sitter of people who may come by while they’re away will ensure they understand who to expect and remain vigilant about any unwanted visitors.

Keep in contact – Communication is key for a smooth and fuss free house and pet sit. Ensure you keep in touch with the sitter to see if they have any questions or whether they require any further information about tasks for the farm. Agree to the regularity of the communication to ensure that you both feel that you can enjoy a holiday break and time to yourselves.

Clear communication about expectations, responsibilities, and animal care is the basis for a successful break away from the farm. While leaving the farm that you’ve poured so much love and effort into – even for a short time! – may seem difficult, experienced and enthusiastic house and pet sitters are on hand to give farm owners the R&R they need.

Browse house and pet sitter profiles to learn more about sitter experience and animal care.

 

 

Hobby farm house sitting – what you need to know

Fresh, crisp morning air, peace and quiet and only the sounds of nature to wake you from your sleep – sure, there are certainly many drawcards to choosing a farm or rural house sit. But knowing the routines of farm life and animal care, are just some of the things that you should brush up on before you step off the beaten track.

Responsibilities and expectations – House and pet sitters that are seasoned in the way of farm life may already have this covered, but if you’re new to the lifestyle, then understanding your responsibilities on the farm and the daily expectations of the running of the farm is critical. Before the owner leaves for their holiday, discuss all aspects of the farm – the different types of animals, care requirements including grooming, feeding, cleaning and any medical needs. Ideally, you will have this conversation before you step foot on the farm to ensure that you’re up for the challenge.

Get to know the animals – While you’re not expected to be Dr Dolittle, having confidence in dealing with a variety of animals is a good skill to have on a farm. Make sure you understand the feeding routines, how many times a day animal care needs to be maintained, the likes and dislikes of animals and how to identify if something is unusual or irregular with the animals in your care. Also ask questions about pests or predators that could pose a threat to animals.

Know who to contact in an emergency – Hobby farms and larger farms are sometimes located in rural or remote areas. Discuss emergency contacts with homeowners before they leave including driving distances from neighbours, vets, and local authorities. Familiarise yourself with first aid and emergency routines for yourself as well as for the animals.

Keep up the communication – Keep in regular contact with the homeowner. Provide regular updates about how the farm sit is progressing and any things that may have arisen after they’ve left. Ensuring that there is a steady line of communication and updates will build your confidence as you tick off significant tasks and animal care, and give the farm owner peace of mind that everything is under control.

Take some time for yourself – The best part of a farm sit is the unique holiday experience. When all tasks are complete, remember to take some time for yourself to soak in the environment daily achievements.

A house and pet sit on a farm can be a very rewarding experience for families, couples and people travelling on their own. It provides a unique juxtaposition of the hustle and bustle of city life compared to farm life – both uniquely interesting in their own way.

By having a clear understanding of the chores, animal care, and daily routines on the farm, a house and pet sitting stay can bring great satisfaction. Find out about available house and pet sitting adventures in farm and rural settings on Mindahome.com.au.

 

 

Settling pets during the scary season

As more Australians embrace the spooky season and don the ghoulish costumes to scare the neighbours, consider our four-legged friends with some tips about how to get them through this year’s Halloween.

Scary Treats: Trick or treating goodies may be delicious for kids and those that are young at heart, but some sweet treats could be toxic to our pet pals. Keep your pet’s paws away from the Halloween treats this year. Chocolate, particularly dark and baking chocolate, is a big no no for our pet pals, as are raisins which come in a variety of Halloween-style tricky or treating goodie bags. Also stay clear of gummies and lolly treats as these may include Xylitol, a sweetener that can induce vomiting and be life threatening for dogs. If you’re concerned your pet pal has ingested a treat that could be harmful, head to the vet for advice immediately.

Noise and strange visitors: It’s possibly the only time of year when we’re excited to see unusually dressed, makeup laden, noisy strangers come to our door, but our pets aren’t accustomed to what we’ve all come to understand as Halloween tradition. Your pet may be scared by the noises, costumes and general ghoulishness of Halloween, so it might be best to create a safe space for them in your home while the Halloween fanfare unfolds. Create a space with their favourite toys and familiar smells, and away from the scariness of Halloween.

Update contact details: When pets become frightened, there is the chance that they can escape the safety of their home and get lost. Before Halloween hits, make sure your pet’s microchip details are up to date, especially if you’ve recently moved house, and opt for an ID tag that your pet can wear for easy identification, so they get home safely sooner.

Cords and cables: It’s fun to set the mood with spooky lighting, but cables and cords snaking around the floor can been seen as a form of fun for pets, especially our feline friends. Make sure cables are securely tied and covered and, if possible, out of reach of pets to prevent them from chewing through the wires.

Costumes: Everyone loves a pet in costume and Halloween is another perfect opportunity to dress up our pet pals. However, safety should be the number one priority when considering a costume for your doggo or kitty. Make sure the costume is a comfortable fit around your pet’s neck and chest with enough room for them to move easily and run around. Always monitor your pet while they are wearing their costume as they might become tangled or ingest some of the decorative items such as buttons and ribbons. Grabs a few snaps and show off your pet in costume, but don’t leave your fur kid in their creepy threads for too long.

If you’re planning Halloween celebrations, keep our pet pal’s safety in mind and seek advice from your vet if you are concerned about your pet’s wellbeing.

Pet sitters in search of a place for celebrate the spooky season can head online to find their ideal position.

Supporting pets through thunderstorms

Thunder and Pets

Thunderstorms can be spectacular and yet terrifying events in nature. The loud noises, and bright flashes of light of a fierce thunderstorm can send chills down the spine of even the most heroic humans. So, spare a thought for our pet pals who might need extra comfort during these overwhelming moments of nature.

We can all understand that sporadic flashes of light and booming, crashing sounds during thunderstorms would trigger unease among pets. Many pets have highly sensitive hearing – in fact, dogs are said to have four times better hearing than humans! – which means the unexpected loud cracks of thunder can cause them distress and anxiety. Continue reading “Supporting pets through thunderstorms”

Protecting Precious Paws

Caring for pet paws

Across the globe, dogs and cats are by far the most common and popular pets of choice for many households. In Australia, an estimated 6.4 million dogs and 5.3 million cats have become the lovable fur kids of their homes. This translates to around 46.8 million padded paws pouncing, playing, and patting around the country – and that doesn’t include all the other pets with padded feet!

So, what’s the best way to protect these precious paws? Here are some tips: Continue reading “Protecting Precious Paws”

Mastering the Art of House Sitting: Your Guide to Securing the Perfect Assignments

In today’s fast-paced world, house sitting has become an increasingly popular way to travel affordably and experience new destinations. With the advent of technology, the house-sitting landscape has evolved, making it easier than ever for both homeowners and sitters to connect. In this updated guide, we’ll explore the key factors and strategies that will help you win that coveted house-sitting position.

  1. Build a Solid Profile: To stand out in the competitive house-sitting market, it’s crucial to create a comprehensive and compelling profile. Start by highlighting your relevant experience, including any past house-sitting gigs or pet care responsibilities. Emphasise your reliability, trustworthiness, and love for animals or plants. Be sure to include a friendly photo of yourself to establish a personal connection.
  2. Leverage the Review System: Reviews play a vital role in building trust between homeowners and sitters. If you have previous house-sitting experience, encourage homeowners to leave reviews on your profile. These reviews will serve as a testament to your reliability and the quality of your services. Make it a priority to provide exceptional care during your assignments to maximise the chances of receiving positive feedback.
  3. Utilise the House-Sitting App: Take advantage of the house-sitting app available to you. These apps provide instant notifications about new house-sitting opportunities, ensuring that you’re among the first to apply. Set up customised alerts to receive notifications for your preferred locations, dates, and pet types. Being prompt in your responses can significantly increase your chances of securing a house-sitting position. follow the link to download your App. Apple   Android
  4. Craft a Personalised Application: When applying for a house-sitting position, avoid using generic templates. Instead, take the time to personalise each application. Tailor your message to address the homeowner’s specific needs and concerns. Highlight relevant experience, mention any special skills, and express genuine interest in their home and pets. This personal touch demonstrates your dedication and attention to detail.
  5. Communicate Responsibly: Clear and effective communication is key to winning a house-sitting position. Respond promptly to homeowner inquiries and be proactive in providing updates throughout the selection process. Demonstrate your willingness to accommodate the homeowner’s preferences, such as scheduling a virtual interview if you cannot attend in person or providing additional references. Your professionalism and responsiveness will help instill confidence in homeowners.
  6. Go the Extra Mile: Send plenty of updates of the pets’ activities and progress, also include photos of the pets looking happy and content. Keep the house clean and perhaps leave some flowers, a small gift or just a note saying how much you have enjoyed looking after their home and pets.

With the increasing popularity of house sitting, securing the perfect position requires an organised approach. By building a strong profile, utilising the review system, leveraging our house-sitting app, crafting personalised applications, communicating responsibly, and going the extra mile, you’ll enhance your chances of winning the house-sitting opportunities you desire. Remember, standing out from the crowd with your exceptional skills, reliability, and passion for the task at hand will set you on the path to becoming a sought-after house sitter in today’s competitive market.

Moving with Pets – Tips and tricks for a stress-free move

Moving house with petsAustralians are among the most mobile people in the world, with 40.7% changing their address in the five years prior to 2021. Couple that with the fact that we’re among the world’s top animal-loving nations, and you have a few things to consider for the next major move.

To ease the stress and anxiety for the people and pets involved in the move, here are some tips to ensure the transition runs smoothly. Continue reading “Moving with Pets – Tips and tricks for a stress-free move”