CRAWLEY DOG WALKERS - A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A DOG WALKER 🐾
Hello Friends & Pet Parents,
Today I thought I would give you all an insight into my normal day to day routine which will give you an idea of what your dog experiences whilst out with me or a member of the team!
I usually wake up between 7am - 7:30am depending on if I have a morning walk booked in for the day.
First things first... Breakfast! I am very grouchy when I am hungry so I make sure that I have my chamomile tea and a bowl of cereal / porridge within 30 minutes of getting out of bed.
On days when the weather is cold or rainy I like to make up a hot drink flask for the day, if its pretty mild out there then a few bottles of water is fine.
After breakfast I have a quick shower and get dressed for the day. Comfort is key when it comes to what clothes I wear... I wont be winning any fashion shows anytime soon thats for sure! 😂
At this point its about 8am and my business hours have officially started! I will pack my backpack for the day with supplies for my walks, things like treats, slip leads, long leads, a raincoat, snacks for the day, water for the dogs and my doggy first aid kit.
If I have an early morning walk booked in then I will go out and make sure my van is all in order. If not, its time to get on the socials!
I probably spend about 2 hours a day on my laptop or phone updating my social media accounts and going through my business page for the latest insights. If you follow my page you know I like to update pictures and videos often. I also offer giveaways and freebies around seasonal holidays.
Once my walks begin I can be out for hours with back to back walks and pet sits so I have to make sure that I have enough food or drink to sustain me on my walks!
My Morning walks are scheduled for 8am - 10am. Once my walks are finished I will pop home and have a drink and some fruit if I have time.
Mid-day walks are 11am - 2pm, this is by far my busiest period. I always try to fit in as many clients as I can during this mid-day session which is why I am so happy that I was able to buy my van. I can take multiple dogs at once now which allows me to offer my services to even more people.
On walks I really try to tailor the hour towards your dog. If your dog likes chasing balls and sticks then we go to a field where they can do that, if your dog likes a swim then off to the lake we go! Your dogs will be greeted with lots of fuss and strokes when I pick them up, then they are put into their own comfy crate in my van and driven to one of their fave spots. Its so lovely opening the van doors and seeing how excited the dogs are when they get a sniff of their location. I like to vary what we do on our walks, sometimes we go off the beaten track, sometimes I focus more on getting them moving and sometimes I like to just let them roam and have a smell of the surroundings, this is especially nice in the summer when its hot and the flowers are in bloom! After a nice walk and a towel dry if needed (Im looking at you Ollie) I will load them back into the van and drop them off home where they will sleep for the rest of the day!
I also implement basic training on every walk, teaching (or re-enforcing) good manners, good walking techniques on the lead and basic commands. Even 5 minutes a day training can make such a huge difference to your dogs mental health and overall obedience.
As business is picking up after lock down I have been able to create more dynamic groups for my dog walks, I have had clients ask me how I go about introducing dogs to each other and how I assess which dogs will gel well together.
I will always walk new dog clients solo for the first few weeks to assess their behaviour on walks and their interactions with other dogs. If I am happy with their progress on the solo walks then I can start thinking about which other dogs on my books they will match with. This comes down to personality traits of the dog, their size and the dogs interests (water, toys, food, dogs).
Once I have decided who I think will be the best match, I will have to dogs meet each other in neutral territory. My sister Becky will help me with this so we can maintain better control of the situation.
Depending on how that first meeting goes I will either walk them together from then on or perhaps do a few more meet up sessions with them both before continuing with our group walks.
I am happy to report that the vast majority of dogs that I walk are very friendly and sociable, I have formed groups already and many of the dogs know each other and have great fun together!
Once my mid-day walks are over I will usually visit any cat-sits or dog-sits that I have booked in for that week. This can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours.
When I get home I will clean out my van, shake out all the towels, hoover the bottom of the crates and just do a general check to make sure everything is kept hygienic and clean.
Once im indoors I like to do 30 minutes to an hour of training each day, this includes paid courses, online videos or reading, this keeps me motivated and gives me new insights to dog behaviours I may not have come across before.
Dinner is usually around 6:30 in the evening and then if I have an evening sit booked in I will pop out after dinner for that. This week I have a couple of cat-sits booked in for 7pm so I will get my feline fix!
I also schedule my meet and greets in the evenings.
All in all dog walking is a very rewarding and fulfilling job where you can really form connections with people and their animals. I speak for myself and other dog walkers in my team when I say that your dogs steal pieces of our heart! We treat all dogs as if they were our own. They get the best care and consideration and all we want is their happiness.
So thats it! a little snippet of a day in the life of a dog walker. Of-course one of the best aspects of this job is no one day is the same. Some days I will be out all day, other days I am quieter and may have a few hours in the afternoon to catch up on admin work. Some days I am able to stay warm and dry and other days I am covered in slobber and mud!
But I can honestly say I wouldn't have it any other way! 😁
My business hours are: 8am - 8pm
Monday - Saturday
Bye for now!