So you’re thinking about possibly getting a dog walker but aren’t sure if your dog is ready or needs one. This can be a hard question. One thing we probably love but find challenging about our fur children is that they cannot talk. The problem with that is they cannot tell us what they need. This makes it hard to know if they’re lonely or uncomfortable while we are away.
Every animal is different. How old is your dog? Does he generally get along with other people? He may be very friendly, but have you ever had somebody else walk or look after your dog? Do you work far away or are away from home for long hours? Is he able to comfortably not go outside for 4, 6, 8 hours? Does he get separation anxiety? Is your dog able to roam around when you are not home, or is he in a crate? These are all questions to consider.
There are many perks to having a dog walker. If you get stuck in a meeting or in traffic, or want to stop at the gym or get a drink after work without stopping home, it relieves any stress or guilt of having to run home to your dog. It is very comforting to know someone is available to step in when needed.
With all of this being said, the only large setback of having a dog walker is that it is an expense; especially if you are looking to have one on a regular basis. Dog walking is a service with an expense like anything else. However, if you are on a budget, one option is to find a dog walker that is okay being “on call” but doesn’t need a regular schedule. That way if something comes up last minute, or let’s say your dog has been sick and needing more attention, you can have someone come.
If you are on the fence about getting a dog walker, one good option is to have a “trial run.” You can always try a dog walker out and have them come once or twice a week to see how they do; and then go from there. Monitor your dog’s behavior at this time. See how he is when you get home. Does he seem generally happier and more relaxed? If he does, it may make sense to invest in a dog walker to increase his quality of life.