Thursday, 31 May 2012

How to Choose a Dog Walker - Choosing The Right Dog Walker For You

Choosing the right dog walker for your pet can be quite a hard task. You want to make sure that the person can be trusted with your dog and you should look for the same qualities in a dog walker than you would look for in a babysitter or child minder.

Here's a list of tips that I've put together that should hopefully help you to pick the right dog walker.

  • Ask friends, family or neighbours for references. If they can’t help you, contact your vet or local animal charity. They should be able to point you in the right direction.
  • Always ask for references!
  • Make sure they are licensed, insured and have  a Criminal Background Check – much the same as if you were looking for a baby sitter.
  • Make sure they can accommodate your dog’s needs – whether he/she needs a shorter walk, special diet or extra attention – your dog walker should tailor their services to each dog separately. There is no one size fits all when it comes to animal needs.
  • Make sure your dog likes them – Your dog will need to feel comfortable around them as they will be responsible for them on the walks.
  • Make sure you like them! You’re trusting someone to look after your best friend, make sure you like them and feel that they can be trusted.
  • Make sure you swap Emergency Contact information – If something goes wrong you both need to be able to contact each other as soon as possible.
  • Make sure that their transportation methods are safe. Overcrowded cars or vans are dangerous. You need to know that your dog is safe when it is being taken to or from it's walking destination.
  • Are they well prepared? Do they have poop bags, leash,  toys and fresh water to take with them on the walk? Dog walkers need to be responsible too!
  • How many dogs do they walk at the same time? The more dogs there are per walk, the higher the chances that something could potentially go wrong.
  • Are they comfortable? If you have a larger dog it's important that the walker feels comfortable and is able to control the dog in all situations. If you feel this might not be the case, do not hire them.
  • Do they know first aid? In the event of an accident, can they help by providing animal first aid at the scene?
  • Will they deliver the service that they have promised to? After all, you are hiring them for a service so you need to make sure they will do exactly what they have agreed to. 
  • Do they have someone to cover them if they are sick? Your dog shouldn't have to miss out on it's daily exercise if they fall ill or can't make the appointment.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions – You are trusting them with your family pet, if you are unsure of anything, let them know. Communication is the key to any successful relationship.
Bambi and Bear are ready for their daily walk.

 Hopefully this has given you something to think about when choosing a dog walker.
If you would like more information about our dog walking services in your local area, please feel free to drop us an email at

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