Recently the need for dog walkers has grown. This has come about due to the increase in dog ownership, when householders are out in the day, unable to leave a dog in the garden due to the risk of theft or nuisance barking and not living in a community with relatives nearby and neighbours that can be asked to commit to looking after your dog.
Do I need a dog walker?
A dog can become bored and destructive, sad and anxious, if left at home alone for long periods of time. Not to mention the need to be clean. If your dog is going to be left on a regular basis and you don’t want to ask a friend or neighbour to look in and walk your dog, then a professional pet carer may be the answer.
What sort of dog walking service do I need for my dog?
It is important to consider the needs of your dog when choosing a pet care service, particularly bearing in mind his age and temperament. (A puppy shouldn’t be walked for too long and an older dog may not want to walk for too long.) Would your dog be happy on a walk with a group of other dogs for an hour or would he be better suited to a 1:1 or shorter walk?
There are great advantages to be had from group walks, in particular, the stimulation. Many dogs enjoy the company of other dogs. It can also aid their social skills. But it is not for every dog. Some dogs benefit more from 1:1 walks, and this can also give the dog walker more opportunity to reinforce training.
HOW DO I FIND A PROFESSIONAL DOG WALKER?
Ask other dog owners, friends and your dog trainer for recommendations or find advertisements at your vet, pet shop or internet for pet carers near you.
A telephone call is a good start, to discuss your needs with a pet carer to see if they can provide the support you are looking for. If you are both happy, then a meeting will better determine suitability. A preliminary dog walk together will help you assess the walker and the walker assess the dog.
Here are some questions to ask:
- Who will be walking my dog?
- Is the dog walker insured?
- How much experience does the dog walker have?
- How many dogs are walked together?
- Where will my dog be walked?
- What duration are the walks?
- How long will my dog be out of the home?
- What times are the walks?
- Do the dogs travel in a vehicle?
- What safety precautions are taken in the vehicle?
- Is there ventilation in the vehicle?
- Will my dog be walked off lead?
- What methods are used to reinforce my dog’s training?
- Is the dog walker aware of dog law?
I hope this helps with considering a dog walking service. If you have any questions, please feel free to use the comments box on www.thecompanyofdogs.wordpress.com