I’ve looked after 30 cats, saved £10,000 on rent, and it has helped my social anxiety
I was living in a 15-person hostel dorm in early 2017 when I decided to start cat sitting. Since moving to London after graduating five years earlier, I had tried various unconventional ways of living. There was a year in a huge warehouse with 30 others, and eight months on a rented boat, but neither was as cheap as the hostel. For just £350 a month I could live in central London.
By the time I’d set up my own business, Special Guest, hosting events that allow neighbours to meet and become friends, the novelty of climbing on to the third storey of a shaky bunk bed had long worn off. Earplugs were a must, my roommates were total strangers and I once got home to find someone had “hotboxed” the entire dorm with cannabis smoke. I also really needed a quiet space to work. Around that time, a friend asked me to look after his cat while he went on holiday, and I realised the idea had potential on a bigger scale.