Who needs a dog walker?

Who needs a dog walker?

So you’ve just bought a new puppy, or rescued your first dog, and everyone keeps talking about getting a dog walker. To you, it might feel like an added and, at present, unnecessary expense (particularly if you’ve just blown your entire month’s salary kitting the house out for your new companion). So the question for you is, do you need a dog walker in your life?

The short answer is, quite possibly not! Many people own dogs without ever needing a dog walker in their life, particularly if they’re lucky enough to work permanently from home, or have neighbours and family members who can look after their hound whilst they’re out. However, bearing in mind that the RSPCA recommends dogs are left for no longer than 4 hours at a time, then there is a strong likelihood for the rest of you that, at some point, you are going to be in need of a professional dog walker’s services.

If you’re a first time dog owner, or have never used a dog walker before, you might want to know a little bit more about what having a professional dog walker involves, before deciding on whether or not you’re going to need one.

If you’ve already decided you do want a professional dog walker, but don’t know where to start with finding one, then check out our other blog post on ‘What to look for in a dog walker’.

What do dog walkers do?

The first thing that it’s worth new dog owners thinking about is what it is that dog walkers actually do, before deciding on whether they actually need one in their life. This might seem a daft place to start (after all, dog walkers walk dogs, right?), but if you’ve never used one before, it isn’t always self-evident what having a professional dog walker actually means.

For some people, a dog walker is a practical utility, much like having a water supply, or heating in your home. For owners who work long hours, and who don’t have the option of ‘popping home’ at lunch, the walker is the person who makes sure your dog is exercised during the day, and who gives you a bit of peace of mind, knowing your hound will have a bit of company whilst you’re out.

For those who work from home, a dog walker might not be a necessity in the same sense. However, the vast proportion of clients we have at Jess Fox & Hound choose to use our services in spite of working from home, because they recognise the enriching benefits that sending their dog out on a weekly adventure with a pack of carefully chosen hounds brings to their socialisation skills.

Indeed, many of the dogs we have in our packs started walking with us as puppies because their owners wanted them to have the opportunity to meet different types of dogs in a controlled environment, whilst in that all-important socialisation window. Dogs that come out with us from a young age generally turn into well-balanced, well-rounded adult hounds.

Also, don’t forget that even people that permanently work from home do still have to leave the house for unexpectedly long periods from time to time. Having a dog walker that your dog already knows, and is comfortable being in a routine with, means that you’ll always have someone to call on in case of the unexpected, or emergencies.

The length and type of walks the dog walkers offer may vary between companies, and it is up to you as the owner to think about what type of walks you and your dog need, in order to find the best match. For some owners, a one-hour walk is enough to know that your dog has had some fun whilst you’ve been away. For others (maybe those of you who work longer days, or whose dogs aren’t so keen on being left alone), a walker who also offers dog care across the day might be more suitable. And those of you with hounds that have extra energy to burn might need a dog walker with a sense of adventure to match. Here at Jess Fox & Hound, we have you covered for all of the above, and we’d encourage you to look through our list of services to see if there is something to suit you.

Some of you might also be considering ‘doggy daycare’ for your dogs, and may be wondering about the difference between this, and having a professional dog walker for your dog. For more on this, please see our blog ‘professional dog walking versus doggy daycare: what’s the difference’?