Did you know those dog owners who regularly walk their dogs have a higher chance of meeting their fitness goals? According to a study conducted at the Michigan State University, dog owners are 34% more likely to achieve 125 minutes of walking in a week than those who do not have dogs.
Walking your dog also reduces the likelihood of chronic diseases such as diabetes. But regardless of the physical benefits of dog walking, pet parents should always take the time to walk their dogs.
Remember that dogs are highly dependent on their owners and it is up to you as a pet parent to help your dog experience the sights, tastes, sounds, and smells of the world.
Unfortunately, there are situations wherein dog owners are unable to take their dogs out for a walk. When this happens, it may be time to call for a dog walker.
The Costs of Getting a Dog Walker
This article will give focus on what dog owners can expect when hiring a dog walking service. This would include the varying dog walking rates and the factors that affect them.
When looking for a dog walking service, one must first consider how long the excursion would take and the time of day it would be taking place. Dog walking prices generally starts at $14 to $20, depending on the reputation and prestige of the dog walking company you will hire.
Naturally, the price would be much lower when you employ a local kid to do the dog walking for you. However, you should know that the people employed by a professional dog walking company are highly trained individuals who are more capable with taking your dog out for a walk and caring for it than a kid from the street.
Rates per Walk Duration
- 20-Minute Walk
This is probably the shortest duration you can choose from when it comes to hiring a dog walking service. Usually, this would cost around $16 to $20 but there are instances when the price could go down as low as $14 especially during special events.
- 30-Minute Walk
Usually, most dog walking companies start their services with this duration. Having your dog walked for half an hour may cost around $18 to $25.
- 45-Minute Walk
A 45-minute walk may cost you around $23 to $30.
- One-Hour Walk
For most dog walking companies, this walk duration is the limit. Usually, professional dog walking companies would charge $30 to $40 for one-hour walk duration.
While the rates featured above are somewhat affordable, they can become quite heavy if you would need to have your dog taken out for a walk a number of times. Thankfully, there are a number of companies that offer bundle packages for those willing to have their dogs walked regularly.
What dog walking companies would do is to set a discounted minimum standard price specifically geared for those wanting regular walks for their dogs.
One company that offers bundle packages is YoDogWalker.com which charges $390 for 15 one-hour walks which would be about $26 per walk.
- More Dogs
The rates previously mentioned apply only to single dogs. If you have two or more dogs that need walking, you may need to add a bit more. Usually, dog owners need to add $5 for every added dog but there are also companies like LuckyDogLA.com that sets fixed rates for two or more dogs.
- Park Visits
A trip to the park may cost more, about $3, even more so if the dog walker would take your pooch to a dog park where it can socialize with other dogs. A dog park visit may cost you a total of $40.
- Early Mornings, Evenings, Weekends, & Holidays
There will be additional charges if you schedule a dog walker during the weekends, on holidays and evenings. For weekends, early mornings and evenings, there may be a surcharge of $3 to $5. Dog walking fees may spike up to $10 to $15 during major holidays such as New Year’s Eve, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Independence Day among others.
Tips to Help You Find the Right Dog Walker
- When looking for a dog walker, one of the best things to do is to get referrals from your friends, family, or your veterinarian. Furthermore, you can go online to see what everyone else is saying about a certain dog walker.
- Once you’ve found a possible candidate, invite the dog walker so that he/she could get acquainted with your dog. How your dog feels about the walker is also important. It’s alright if your dog doesn’t warm up to the dog walker immediately. However, the walker would need to be comfortable with your dog and understand its body language.
- A good dog walker must be knowledgeable with first aid and must know how to conduct CPR on animals. This is important in order to ensure the safety of your beloved pet in the case that something goes wrong.
- Conduct a background check on the candidate and if he/she has a history with animal abuse, then it would be best if you continue on searching. Don’t forget to ask the dog walker about his/her experience in walking dogs.
- Find someone who is insured. Understand that accidents can happen anytime and it is definitely a plus when you find someone who will be covered by insurance in case something undesirable happens.
- Go for a test run. Your pet should be comfortable when walking with a dog walker and what better way to determine this than to go for a trial walk. Doing this would help you see if you found a good fit for your dog.
- Clarify everything. Before you choose a dog walker, make sure it is made clear to you where they will be going and how long will they be gone. If your dog has any conditions, it would be best to inform the dog walker first.
- You will know that they are a good fit when your dog’s body language tells you it is comfortable or happy.