Starting a business is no walk in the park, not even a dog walking business. While it may seem like all one needs to do is pick up the animals from their owners and navigate the neighbourhood or a local park, there is a whole lot more that goes into a dog walking business than meets the eye. From training to permits, insurance to criminal checks, the list is seemingly endless. Anyone intending to venture into the business needs to check all the boxes of conditions required to start a successful dog walking business.
Things to put in order before starting a dog walking business
- Know your craft.
Every venture begins with a good working knowledge of the business. Dog walking is no exception. To begin with, you must understand canine behaviour as a dog walker. Dogs are social and temperamental creatures, and although they have a basic modus operandi, different breeds exhibit different character traits. It is only wise that you have a working knowledge of dogs and how to handle them at any age or disposition. This knowledge can be acquired from local kennels and rescue centres. Volunteering exposes you to different kinds of dogs, and you learn quickly how to manage and take care of them. It is also a plus if you really love dogs. It makes the job so much easier and enjoyable.
- Acquire formal training and qualification
Attending dog training sessions to learn basic training and how to control many dogs at once provides the necessary qualifications and credentials that make you credible to prospective customers. Having those qualifications and backing from recognised bodies and communities makes you more professional and assures dog owners that their pets are in capable hands.
- Define your price and preferred mode of payment
It is very important that you name your price and stick with it. Dog walkers often define their price by the amount of time they spend walking the dogs, the size of the dog and the number of dogs they are expected to walk at once from a particular customer. The preferred mode and method of payment should also be clearly stated and agreed on. Whether its cash or money transfers, you should clearly state it.
- Get dog walkers insurance
Yes, there is such a thing, and given the nature of the job, it is necessary and in your best interest to acquire one. Things happen when caring for other people’s pets. They could get sick, hurt, runaway and get lost. Accidents have also been known to occur. All these are unplanned incidents that are usually beyond anyone’s control, but when they happen, there will always be a lookout for someone to blame. Dog walker insurance indemnifies your business from being responsible for any liabilities that may come up while pets are in your care. It will protect your business and equipment and help cover any costs that may arise like veterinary costs or legal fees if it gets to that.
- Criminal record check
If for any reason you will have access to the dog owner’s home, whether to fetch the dog or return him after the walk, get a criminal record check. It gives your clients extra reassurance of your credibility and integrity.
- Acquire suitable transportation
This is especially necessary if you will need to take the dogs to certain locations like the park or the beach. Vehicles designed for pet transportation should be available to move them from their homes to walking locations and back home.
Dog walking is a great way to make a little bit of extra money with the right care and planning.
Dog walking is necessary to keep our beloved pets heater to ensure that you not able to.