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trailsillustrated's avatar

How do I tell someone this constructively? Or not at all?

Asked by trailsillustrated (14433 points ) November 3rd, 2012

Ok I am house sitting for my sister and brother in law. She and me are super close. He doesn’t like me and never has. She had polio as a child (salk vaccine long story) anyway they have a super nice house. They have done the energy audit thing and it’s super insulated, when I came here I thought I was getting the flu. I bought some claritin and I feel better. There is dog hair everywhere, one dog has cushing’s disease and has to be let out every two to four hours,and medicated daily, which is why I am here. They have a house keeping service but their turkish rug is covered with dog hair. Everything is coated with dog hair. The one dog just vomited grass on the floor. My sister is on a huge amount of rx drugs. I think this house might be why she is sick. She is so busy she hasn’t time for reflection. I am talking narcotic painkillers. Should I broach this subject? She is going to have surgery again, when she gets back from holidays. I don’t know whether to bring it up or not.

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14 Answers

chyna's avatar

Are you going to be there when the housekeeping service comes in? Maybe you can talk to them about sweeping up the dog hair better. I’m not sure how you could bring it up to your sister without hurting her feelings.

trailsillustrated's avatar

thanks @chyna they don’t speak english. I don’t know what to do. I feel like am floating in a hair bubble.

jca's avatar

@trailsillustrated: How does your sister communicate with the housekeeping service? There must be a way she tells them what she needs. To a large extent, professional cleaning people know what to do, but there can be times when specific requests must be made, for example “please clean the chandelier” or “I had guests this weekend. Can you please change the sheets in the guest bedroom?”

trailsillustrated's avatar

@jca no idea. Think it’s one of those things where they just pay it. I have been here and sometimes they spend 2 hours, 4 hours, or 45 minutes. My sister is always in a hurry, I don’t think she thinks about it except to say they don’t sweep well enough or clean their (never used) hot tub jets. Feels like I can’t breathe, dog stench, mud, hair, I’m gonna try to clean it myself.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

They have a housekeeping service and everything is covered in dog hair? What’s wrong with this picture?

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@trailsillustrated Good, you’ve got that. Can you watch the housekeepers next time? The narcotic painkillers also scare the crap out of me.

Judi's avatar

Write it down and run it through a web translation program. “Please clean all the dog hair” and leave a note for the cleaners.

Shippy's avatar

You can say anything you want to really, it’s all in the way you say it.

marinelife's avatar

You can try, but if she is not responsive, I would back off.

Bagardbilla's avatar

Definitely have the dog hair/dander cleaned up. A well insulated house may be a wonderful thing environmentally speaking, however it’s a horrible thing to be in due to modern construction materials. As a GC I can tell you that most home building materials “gas-off”, they give off gasses (over time, as they break down, and/or come into contact with other gasses), also known as VOC’s (Volatile Organic Compounds). Also animals self medicate by eating grass, which does not bode well for being in an almost air tight home. At the very least have some open windows opened, have the house cleaned up of all dog hair/dander etc. Best of luck to you.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

If you have to TELL the housecleaning service to clean up the dog hair, then they aren’t much of a housecleaning service.

I have tried to get my sister to get rid of her dogs to no avail. My sister has allergies bad, is a terrible housekeeper, and is hardly ever home. If I lived closer, I would be tempted to make the dogs disappear, but I know she would just replace them.

I am not much for tact. I would tell her exactly what you just told us. Soften it by telling her that you’re just thinking of her and her health, and the dog hair and the extra work to care for the dogs is something she doesn’t need in her life. That shouldn’t hurt her feelings, but if she is really attached to those dogs, your suggestions will probably fall on deaf ears.

trailsillustrated's avatar

@Bagardbilla what is a GC? this is an older home. They got some kind of tax credit? or rebate? They filled the walls with new insulation and had the house fitted with all new windows? And have some kind of tiny tank hot water service and central air. I just think she needs a weekly or daily housekeeping service. I cleaned it myself, the mop water was black instantly, and swept up mountains of dog hair. I’m not even talking about what was on the furniture. PS I live in a draughty old wood heated cabin.

Bagardbilla's avatar

A “GC” is a General Contractor.
If it’s an older home as you say, once the house has been throughly cleaned and properly dusted, see how that works out for a few days. If the issue persists (not for you, since you may be allergic as is to the dogs), for your sister. If it does it could possibly be a side effect of the Rx. For the short period you’re going to be there, I think just keeping the house clean would be a big help for both of them.

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