Lead the Way! How to Make Money from Dog Walking
FACT: Dogs need a lot of walking. If you work all day, that’s a problem for the pooch – unless you pay someone to do it for you.
If you fancy keeping fit and earning some extra money at the same time, dog walking could be a whole new lease of life for you. Some people have even turned it into a full-time job.
If that’s got your ears pricking up, here’s a few tips on how to go about making some canine cash.
- Dog walkers charge per dog, per walk.
- A decent walk is usually between 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the size and breed of dog.
- The going rate is about £10 an hour, but you’ll need to do your homework and price yourself competitively.
- Prepare to use a lot of poo bags. And disinfectant hand gel. If the thought is already making you heave, maybe this isn’t the right path for you.
- If you fail to pick up after your pooches, you risk an on-the-spot fine of at least £80 per… pile!
- National guidelines suggest you shouldn’t walk more than six dogs at a time. Local councils set their own guidance so contact yours for advice.
- Until you’re experienced and confident, you’d be better sticking to one or two dogs at first.
- You could offer your services to a local dog-walking agency, but they’ll charge for putting you on their books. Search online to find what’s going on in your area.
- If you decide to go it alone and already have a dog, spark up a conversation with other walkers on your travels. They might bite your hand off for the offer of a little help or know someone who needs it.
- Stick a friendly advert on the supermarket notice board, in your local vets practice or in a pet shop.
- Get a batch of cheap business cards printed – usually about £5 for 100 – and push them through the doors of homes where you know there’s a dog.
- Check with the owner of any dog you’re walking that there is full pet insurance in place, to be on the safe side.
- If your dog walking really takes off, consider getting Pet Business Insurance to cover all bases. You’ll be deemed more professional.
If all this sounds like a walk in the park, don’t be fooled. Should you venture near any livestock, and the dog you’re walking worries any sheep or cows, a farmer is within his rights to shoot it.
Also, under the Dangerous Dogs Act, if you lose control of a dog in your care, it’s your responsibility not the owners.
So, weigh up the pros and cons then lead the way!