Dog Walker FAQs

  • Introduction

    Many people have turned to dog walking as a regular household service. Dog walking can give your pet some exercise while you’re away at work or just take this chore off your hands when you’re having a busy day. Additionally, some people simply need dog walking help if they’ve sustained an injury or have health-related issues.

    Regardless of why you’re hiring a dog walker, it’s a hugely positive act for your pet. They get exercise, company, and an extra set of eyes on them.

  • How often should you walk your dog?

    The general rule is to walk your dog at least three to four times a day, with each walk being at least 15 minutes long. However, this can significantly vary depending on the dog breed, the dog's age, and the dog's energy levels. For example, some breeds that require a lot of exercise are Labrador retrievers, German shepherds, and boxers.

  • How long should I walk my dog?

    In total, most vets recommend a dog receives between 30 minutes to two hours of exercise a day. The variation depends on your dog’s energy levels. So, if you're hiring a dog walker for a one-hour morning walk, you can choose to do the other 30 minutes to an hour yourself in the evening.

  • How do you walk a dog?

    Usually, it’s safest to walk your dog on a leash so you can prevent them from wandering away. Dog walkers can help your dog learn how to walk well, as they are experts in dog walking. In general, dogs should walk close to their owners (or dog walker) and stay on the left side.

  • How do you train a dog to walk on a leash?

    Many dogs don’t adapt to leash walking right away. They may lunge, pull, or even stop walking. You can ask your dog walker to help train your dog to walk on a leash better. For example, when dogs pull on a leash, the correct reaction is to stop walking. Eventually, this teaches them that pulling won’t be tolerated.

  • How do I stop my dog barking when out walking?

    It doesn't feel great when your dog barks at other dogs. Luckily, you can train this behavior out of them. The experts recommend you teach your dog to heel. This way, when other dogs pass by, you can get your dog to heel and reward them for their good behavior. You can ask your dog walker to practice this on their walks.

  • Why do dogs like walks?

    Walking your dog has two benefits: it's physical exercise for them and it's mentally stimulating. Dogs are genetically a very active species that likes to be outdoors, so they enjoy getting outside a couple of times a day. Additionally, the smells and sights on their walk stimulate their brain. The human equivalent of a dog’s walk is like reading a good book.

  • How much is a dog walker?

    On average, you can expect to pay between $0.05 to $1.00 per minute to have your dogs walked. An average of $0.75 means a 30-minute walk is usually $22.50 and an hour walk is $45. Of course, many things can impact the price, including your location, the length of walking, and the number of dogs.

  • Do I need to tip my dog walker?

    Tipping isn’t necessary or all that common for dog walking services. However, if you have a particularly difficult dog or one that needs special attention, you may choose to tip your dog walker. Additionally, if you have the same dog walker for a while, a tip around the holidays is a nice gesture.

  • Can dogs walk in snow?

    The snow can be painful for your dog's sensitive paws. More importantly, the salt on the ground can also hurt your dog's paws. Lastly, the snow and ice increase your dog's risk of slipping and injuring themselves (or you). When walking your dog in the snow, always put on dog booties.

  • When is it too cold to walk your dog?

    Dogs may love their walks, but in extreme temperatures, it can be safer to remain indoors. At a certain point, extreme cold temperatures can be life-threatening for your dog. Don't take small breed dogs out in temperatures below 23 degrees F and 14 degrees F for medium to large breeds.

  • What temperature is too hot to walk a dog?

    Just as frigid temperatures can harm your dog, the same rule applies to hot weather. If temperatures rise above 68ºF, it's easy for your dog can get overheated and dehydrated. When it's hot outside, consider exercising your dog indoors, shortening their walks, and/or buying booties to protect their paws from pavement. Even if it seems cool, remember that the hot sidewalk can hurt your dog's paws.

  • Why do dogs walk in circles?

    If your dog is walking in circles before lying down, this is normal hereditary behavior. However, if your dog is walking in circles around an area without settling, it might be a sign of stress or anxiety. This likely means they’re not getting enough stimulation and need more (or longer) walks.

  • How do you walk two dogs at once?

    First, if you're going to walk two dogs at once, the dogs must get along. Many dog walkers tackle walking two dogs at once. Using a dog leash coupler can help keep the dogs side by side while still having separate leashes and some freedom.

  • Why does my dog walk sideways?

    Some dog breeds are more prone to walking sideways, also known as “crabbing.” In particular, dogs with long legs do this to avoid tripping. Border collies, spaniels, vizslas, pointers, and German shepherds are prone to sideways walking. Other causes might be hip dysplasia, vestibular disease, or an injury.

  • Why does my dog walk and poop?

    There are two common reasons why dogs walk and poop. First, it’s a way for the dog to leave a strong scent behind. Walking puts added pressure on the anal scent glands, so a more potent smell is produced. Secondly, walking can help make passing their bowel movement easier. If your dog is backed up, walking helps them pass their poop.

  • Can dogs walk backwards?

    Dogs can be trained to walk backwards. It looks quite cute when dogs do this, which is why some dog owners teach this trick. You can request that your dog walker practices walking backward with them. If your dog does this unprompted, though, it might be a sign of a health issue.

  • How soon can I walk my dog after neutering?

    Usually, dogs should be allowed to rest with minimal activity the first 24-48 hours post-neutering. During this time, just take your dog out for their bathroom breaks. After that, you can start integrating short walks back into their routine. Your vet should provide you with clear guidelines for walking post-neutering.

  • How do I start a dog walking business?

    You don’t necessarily need professional training in dog walking to start a dog walking business; although, it might help! After creating a website, you’ll need to build up a clientele roster. You can do this by offering introductory competitive rates as you wait to grow a reputation in your area.

  • How do I become a dog walker?

    There are several ways you can become a dog walker:

    • Work for yourself by offering your services in your community.
    • Apply to a dog walking company for a part-time or full-time job.
    • Sign up for apps like Rover that let you pick up dog walking shifts whenever you want.

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