Should You Get a Dog Walker?

Last week we wrote about the benefits of the daily walk for your dog {link}. Hopefully we convinced you to start a new routine with your dog and schedule a daily walk. For those of you with job or family responsibilities that make that commitment a challenge, we want to make you aware of a great alternative – Dog Walking Services.Dog walkers have been around for many years, but usually it was just a neighborhood kid trying to make a few extra bucks or the local dog trainer supplementing their business. In the last 10 years there has been an influx of dog walking and pet sitting service providers and apps like Rover.com and Wag!, making finding a local dog walker easier and more reliable.

Why Should You Get a Dog Walker?

If you read our post on the benefits of the Daily Walk, or just do a google search on benefits of daily walk and you’ll find a laundry list from veterinarians and others on the health and attitude benefits of that daily walk for you and for your dog.

Dogs thrive on routine, so a regularly scheduled time for them to get out, stretch their legs, work off some excess energy helps them physically and mentally.

Will your dog like it?

We can guarantee your dog will love it. At first, they might miss going with you on their walks because it is such a good bonding experience and you are their pack leader, but eventually they will begin to look forward to that time with their dog walker and begin to sit by the window watching for them.Is it safe, they won’t dognap my dog will they?

The services you find through those apps mentioned above have been vetted. You can also check them on Yelp and ask for references. Don’t just ask for the references, CALL them and ask questions about their services, reliability, conscientiousness, etc. Be at home the first few times they come, ask them to report in to you after each walk and even send pictures if you want.

How do you find a dog walker?

As mentioned above, there are apps that provide listings of dog walking and pet-sitting services. You can also ask your neighbors, your veterinarian and friends for recommendations.

Some tips:

  1. Make sure they are licensed, bonded and insured – especially important if they are going to have a key to your house.
  2. Depending on where you live, a dog walking service might walk groups of dogs together, so find out how many they intend to walk, and the temperament of the other dogs to see if it is a match.
  3. Do they have any first aid training or certification?
  4. Observe how they interact with your dog. Your dog’s reaction to the dog walker is always a good indication of the success of the interaction.
How much will it cost?

Prices are going to vary based on your location, the size and number of pets, the length of the walk, etc. But it’s truly money well spent. In general, expect to pay a dog walker about $15 to $20 per 20-minute walk and $20 to $30 per 30-minute walk.

Good Luck!Additional Resources:

https://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/how-to-choose-a-dog-walker/

https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/home-living/finding-a-dog-walker/

https://notesfromadogwalker.com/2014/02/28/the-dog-walkers-guide-to-choosing-a-dog-walker/

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