“How long did you walk?”
It’s totally fine at the beginning of working with a dog walker to tell them how long you need your dog walked, but after that, it’s best to trust that they are doing that recommended time. It becomes an annoyance when you constantly check in and creates a feeling for your dog walker that you are watching them or don’t trust them. If your dog still seems hyper when you get home, it may be time to extend your walk time with your dog walker.
Asking for favors unless it’s part of the job
Again, discuss with your dog walker when you first start working together exactly what you need from them. If picking up the mail or watering the plants is part of your agreement with your dog walker, great. But asking last minute to do things that aren’t their job can push back their schedule for something that isn’t their responsibility.
“I know I’ve been behind on payment, but I’ll pay you next week…”
Things happen and we all run behind on payment sometimes, but try your very hardest to pay on time (or warn your dog walker with a decent amount of time if you’re going to be late.) This is how dog walkers either supplement or completely make their living, and like any other job, it can be very stressful when you don’t get paid on time. Think about if all or several of their clients did that in the same week and they owed money on bills. Payment on time is important.
“Can you bring an extra leash or extra bags?”
If you need your dog walker to bring things, such as treats or extra poop bags, go over it when you first hire them. Some walkers have a stash on them but others expect them to be at your house and may not have extras.
Springing another dog on them without asking
Maybe your cousin is in town visiting and they brought their dog and you want them to walk him with yours. In some ways it’s not a big deal, especially if they walk well together, but always run it by your dog walker and make sure it’s okay. Some charge per dog, rather than the time they have walked.
Last-minute schedule exceptions
If you need your dog walker to come a few hours earlier or later that day, do you best to give them as much notice as possible. Remember, they probably walk many dogs a day and may have a system in place.
“Why did the dog get dirty?”
There is no way your dog is not going to sometimes get stuff on their paws or in their face. It is not ever a dog walker’s intention to mess up the house or get the dog dirty, but they also aren’t magicians that can avoid it. Leave a towel out if rain is expected.
Out of town last-minute
If you’re planning a vacation, make sure you tell your dog walker when you start planning it rather than the night before you leave town. Things happen sometimes where we have to go out of town at the last minute and that is totally understandable, but try to give your dog walker as much notice as possible. Again, this is how your dog walker makes their living. Let them know if they’re not going to be working that week so they can come up with other arrangements. If you travel a lot for work last minute, make sure you go over this with them so they know it might not be a consistent gig.