Starting a Dog Walking Business

Dog walking is the perfect business for dog lovers young and old. Imagine doing something you love and getting paid a respectable amount for it. Ain't that the sweetest deal? Read on and find out the ABC's of the dog-walking trade.

This might come as a surprise to you but did you know that the dog-walking business, although still in its infancy, is now a booming success especially in highly urbanized areas?

The enlightened dog owner knows that dogs are innately active and they need to walk off all that extra energy. If not, a dog that is restless can manifest inappropriate behavior like excessive barking, chewing, and aggressive behavior.

In a nutshell, what the dog walking service offers is what the name itself implies—talking the client’s dogs out for a walk. This is done on a regular basis one or more times a day and follows a schedule agreed upon by both the dog owner and the dog walker.

Given the nature of the work, the ideal dog walker must be patient and has a basic understanding of dog behavior. He or she must also be physically fit because of all the walking involved and to enable him to handle large and hyperactive breeds.

Ideally, a dog should be taken for a walk once for about an hour or twice for about thirty minutes each time daily. The pace and walking distance must be adjusted to the age and health of the dog. Remember to give the dog time to pause and sniff around. Dogs by nature are olfactory animals and sniffing stimulates them to do the number two.

Setting up the business is really quite simple and the start up capital needed to start it is very manageable.

First things first, you need to think of a business name. You have to have one in order get a license. When thinking of a name, make sure that it is catchy and easy to recall. Check the names of the dog walking businesses in and near your area. Try to veer away from names that sound similar to your competition. Also, try to veer away from names that are too cutesy or overused like pampered pooch, doggie nanny and so on.

Once you have a name and have secured the mandated permits and licenses required by the city or state where you plan to operate your business, then it is now time to procure the necessary tools you need for your business. One item that you mustn’t be without is a multi-lead dog collar and leash. This will enable you to walk three or more dogs at a time without having to deal with tangled leashes. Naturally, walking more dogs at the same translate to more income for you.

Before you go about looking for clients, you must get your paperwork in order. You will need a logbook where you can record the number of walks you did for the assigned period. You also need to prepare a service contract. Having a service contract is important because it defines the scope and limitation of your agreement with the client.

In promoting your business, the cheapest way to go is to circulate flyers around the vicinity where you wish to offer you service. Your flyer must be both attractive and informative. Make sure you indicate the name of your business, your contact information, and the services you offer.


  • cierra said on May 11, 2009
    Wow! I didn't know you had to get a license to have a dog walking service! Even if ur a kid??? (12-13) Wow! What a disappointment! I was looking forward 2 the extra moo-lah! =[[
  • Leanne said on April 7, 2010
    I am 11 years old and i live in the United States, Middlesbrough, Linthorpe and i love walking my strong dog (VERY STRONG).
  • Leanne said on April 7, 2010
    I am 11 years old and i cant believe you can get a walking service at the age of a child.
  • Destinee Johnson said on April 29, 2010
    i am 12 years old and i am in love with animals but i am not able to do a dog sit so i really want to make money so when i found out about you can do dog walking and making money i was like wow so how does it work.!
  • Annette said on June 9, 2010
    How much should i charge to walk a dog(s)? Also, should i go by time, block, a flat rate, or by dog?


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