How To Become A Dog Walker

How To Become A Dog Walker that Dog owners crave for!

Being a dog walker sure seems like a thing that would suffice as a favorite pass time or an amazing full-time job with a fabulous pay. Be that as it may, irrespective of your reasons on how to become a dog walker, one thing must be in place before you grab the leashes of those furry, canine, four-legged animals known as dogs, and walk them down the streets and roads.  You must definitely love everything related to these canine species. Trust us, dogs can sense non dog fans from miles away. What’s more, you should have a clearly written plan on how to make your dog walking a successful stream of income. Having said that, we understand that you don’t have the breakdown of how to become a professional dog walker. So, right here we would be giving you some useful tips. Before that let’s consider how lucrative dog walking can be. 

How Lucrative Is Dog Walking?

According to information given to BuzzFeed news by the CEO and Co-founder of Wag known as Joshua Viber, a dog walker makes an average of $17.50 per walk, while a private professional walker can earn up to $20 to $40. Based on this report and research findings, if you engage dog walking as an actual business, and do it frequently, you really can make up to six figures. Doubt it? Here’s a story that will convince you. Now that that’s been said, let’s get on with the tips on how you can become a dog walker. 

Want to grow and scale your Dog Walking Business ?? Then you need to apply right targeted strategies which can bring a lot of Pet owners as your customers!! Click here to know more!

Necessary Tips To Engage In Order To Become A Dog Walker: 

  • Plan How Large You Intend Your Business To Be: 

Of course, as a newbie to the dog walking business sector, your business would start off small. However, over time with you consistently spreading the information of your availability to dog owners, your client base would expand. However, before it gets to this point you should ask yourself some questions and truthfully answer them. The answers would influence your customer base, and your number of referrals.   

Firstly, be clear to yourself about if your dog walking business would be full time or part-time. If you intend for it to be a temporary or a part-time business, then you will need to explain your hours of availability to your clients. State if you will be available 2 to 3 days in a week or a few hours in a day. If for instance, you are running an academic program, and scheduled time of your dog walking business coincides with your studies, communicate this with your clients. However, you will need to make it up to both your dog and its owners later on.  With that said, note that, doing your dog walking temporarily and for a few hours, will cut down your client base and number of referrals. Working full time and for longer hours would lead to more people seeking your services. 

  • Make A Choice Between Joining An Agency Or Going Solo: 

Wondering why an agency might be right for you? Well, the advantages of joining an agency are that you get to build your resume, gain experience, and make cash a lot quicker than when you are your own boss. What’s more, the agency might handle all the legal requirements such as licenses, and insurance. When you’ve networked and familiarized yourself with the dog-walking market, it becomes a lot easier for you to go solo and do well as your own boss. 

On the downside, an agency would take a commission from the money that is charged for each walk. However, you can temporarily keep up with a  percentage of your pay being deducted until you can stand on your own in the dog-walking market. 

  • Familiarize Yourself With Your City’s Layout. 

If you plan on having amazing walking sessions with your furry friends, then you should get acquainted with the city’s layout. Know the dog parks within the city, the hideaway spots, and the back trails. Know the fun places that will make your canine buddies wag their tails out of sheer joy. 

  • Get Your Licenses, Certification, And Insurance Done: 

If your city legally requires the above mentioned, there’s no escaping from Dogsing them. Getting insured keeps your dog walking business protected from defense cost and damages that occur due to the operations of your business. In line with that, a Pet Care Insurance (PCI) policy handles your insurance needs through coverages like reimbursement for vet bills, general liability, and animal bailee. 

Furthermore, a sure way to boost your credibility and reputation among clients is by getting a dog handling certificate, and all the relevant licenses. If you work with an agency, they might help you sort out all the legal paperwork. 

  • Know All There Is To Know About Dogs, And Be A Dog Lover: 

Firstly, if you’re not a dog lover DO NOT take on the business of dog walking. Dogs can tell when a person is not comfortable with them, and you don’t want to have a bad experience with these furry creatures on the road. 

Secondly, do your research. Ask dog owners questions about their dogs, seek advise from your seniors in the dog walking business and do everything you can to know all you should know about dogs. For instance, familiarize yourself with what you should do when a dog suddenly becomes aggressive, know the breeds of dogs that will make good pairs on your walk sessions and the breed of dogs that you should keep as far away from each other as possible, know how to handle embarrassing situations like when a dog suddenly becomes on heat. 

  • Start Dog Walking For Neighbors And Friends: 

If you’re not keen on joining a dog walking and pet sitting agency, but still want to start building your resume, a great way you can start is by offering your services to friends and neighbors. You will get to make some cash, and you will be working for people who understand you’re a newbie and would be patient with you. What’s best? The dogs of your close friends and neighbors would likely know you, so there won’t be a need to put in so much work towards getting them to buddy up with you. 

So, at the slightest mention of them taking a trip out of town, or being too busy to get their dogs out for a walk, seize the opportunity and make yourself available. However, despite your familiarity with your first set of clients in this case, do everything professionally by ensuring that their dogs are well-taken care of. 

  • Prepare A Solid Business Plan.  

Any business owner that seeks to get his or her business established and known by the target audience, must have a solid business plan. The plan should discuss things like short and long-term business plans, the number employees, the payroll system, the services that will be offered, the marketing technique that will be used among other things. So, as an intending dog walking business owner, you should draft a solid business plan. Also, surf the internet and discuss with dog walkers who have taken their business to enviable heights. You will learn some useful things that you can include in your business plan. 

  • State The Amount You Will Be Charging For Your Services. 

On an average, dog walkers earn between $17.50 dollars, and $40. So, when starting your venture as a dog walker, you should create a charge for your services. When trying to decide the right amount to charge, consider the quality of your services. Would you go the extra mile by offering first-aid dog treatment? Would you also offer dog training services? Is your dog walking full time or part-time? How many hours are you willing to devote? Will you have employees that will never fail a customer? Considerations like these will help you in setting the right price so that you won’t over charge or undercharge. If you have special services like dog training, then you can certainly put some extra dollars on your bills. However, as a newcomer to the market without solid references from several satisfied clients, we advise that your charges should not be so high. Neither should they be so low. Trust us, you don’t want your colleagues seeing you as a bad egg among them so quickly. 

  • Work On Your Marketing And Advertising Strategies: 

Marketing and advertising are keys to growing your client base. So, you should do them right. In line with that, you can begin your marketing and advertisement by branding yourself. Give your business a name that is sophisticated and is easy to remember. Then, you should print well-designed business cards that explains who you are, and  the services that you offer. When that’s done, you should then share your cards to dog owners at parks, or residents that you see giving their dogs a walk, as well as friends, and neighbors. You can also share flyers. Simply walk up to dog owners, explain who you are and what you do, and then give out your flyers. Other places that you can find clients are dog talent shows, and a veterinary clinic. 

Going on, another way that you can get noticed by your target audience is by engaging the power of references. Deliver your services impressively, and when you’re certain that you have done a good job, don’t be scared to ask your satisfied clients to refer you to other dog owners. You can also get yourself listed on dog walker directories, or you can engage email marketing, and social media marketing. 

  • Be Able To Handle the Unpleasant Aspect Of Dog Walking

While these furry canine creatures can be gorgeous to behold and fun to hang out with, they also have a not so glitzy part to them. By this we mean that as a dog walker, you should be willing to clean up after the dogs by picking their poop, and properly disposing it. You should also understand that sometimes it would rain, and the winter months would not be your best months. However, you need to learn how to suck it up, grab your boots, snow gear, and rain jackets, and give those animals their walk. 

Going on, you should know that from time to time you will encounter unfriendly dog owners, annoying pedestrians, not to mention dogs who are talented at getting on your nerves. So, you will need to learn the virtue of patience.  

  • Spend Some Time Exercising: 

Being a dog walker involves strength, stamina, and fitness. This means that you absolutely cannot take on a job like this if you find yourself out of breath often, or if you are overweight and can’t handle physical exertion. In line with that, we advise that you create time to go to do some cardio like swimming, running or playing tennis. These would put you in the right shape to get your job done.

On a final note, there’s a lot of fun and potential of success within the dog walking business sector. However, before you can make a success out of walking and hanging out with these furry, four legged, canine animals called dogs, you have to acquaint yourself with the rules or laws that govern the industry, and you have to consider factors like branding, the creation of a business plan, physical fitness, and the city’s layout among other things. To assist, we have discussed the ways through which you can become a dog walker. 

Want to grow and scale your Dog Walking Business ?? Then you need to apply right targeted strategies which can bring a lot of Pet owners as your customers!! Click here to know more!

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