What happens when I sign up for walks with Jess Fox & Hound?

What happens when I sign up for walks with Jess Fox & Hound?

As covered in our previous blog post on ‘what to look for in a dog walker’ , every dog walker, and dog walking company, operates differently, which means that no two introductory experiences are the same. 

Below is a brief outline of the introductory experience that we offer at Jess Fox & Hound, which takes you through the steps from sending us enquiry, to getting your dog out on walks with us. If anyone has any questions about this, then don’t hesitate to get in touch with Jess directly through the email or telephone number on the website. 

1. The behavioural assessment

The first, and one of the most vital stages of getting your dog incorporated into our pack is a behavioural assessment of your dog. At Jess Fox & Hound, this takes the form of two stages. Firstly, on signing up to our services, you will be registered on the online Pet Sitter Plus system, where you will be asked to fill out a form with 20 questions, designed to find out more about your dog’s behaviours. It is essential that you fill out this form as honestly and accurately as possible, as this is what enables us to ensure that we are going to be the right fit for your pack. 

Once that form has been completed, Jess will arrange to come to your home to meet you and your dog. Meeting your dog in their home environment is important in the first instance, as it enables Jess to assess how your dog interacts in an environment they are comfortable and secure in, as well as see how they react to strangers entering the home. 

During this meet and greet Jess will go over the online behavioural assessment form with you, and ask any other questions that she needs to assess your dogs behaviours. This will also be an opportunity for you to ask Jess any questions you might have, and to discuss what you need from her and the team as dog walkers. 

2. The trial period

Once the meet & greet has been completed, and assuming both you and Jess are satisfied with that initial meeting, Jess will then arrange to take your dog out for their first walk with our pack. It is essential for that first walk that your dog is put in the right pack, and so for their first walk, Jess will normally identify a quieter walk, with a group of dogs that she knows yours will be comfortable with, to introduce them to the walking experience. 

First walks always take place in Jess’s secure field, and a long line is attached to your dog, so that you and Jess can be assured that your dog is safe and secure in their new environment. 

During that walk you will be sent photo updates about your dog, and Jess will also communicate how they get on with the pack. Assuming the first walk goes well, you will then be free to book whichever walks you want for your dog. If Jess has any concerns about your dog’s behaviours during that first walk, this will be communicated to you, and she may suggest that they come out for a few more trial walks with her and the team, until they are confident that they have the measure of your dog and, most importantly, that your dog is happy and secure in the dog walking environment. 

The length of the trial period can vary from dog to dog. Some dogs settle into the pack right away, and pass their ‘probation’ immediately. For others, the acclimatisation process takes a little longer. This isn’t a problem for Jess, or the wider team, however if at any point we feel that your dog is getting the most out of their walks, or that walking with the team is aggravating any behavioural issues, we may suggest pausing walks until a later date.