Also, I do plan on looking for volunteer work as well. I hoping there is a shelter within walking distance. But it would be nice to make a little money though. Being a student, I'm always broke >.< LOL
I had clients whose keys I had copies of, and clients who would have a key hidden, and clients who had garage door codes and I'd just go in through the garage. You could ask them how they would prefer arranging access to their house. I prefer for my dog walker to have the key so if it's an emergency and we can't get home to the dog, she can still get in the house (that is, I don't have to pre-emptively hide a key).-How do I manage my clients? I think one of the main things to this is that I'm not sure, if I do get customers, is how do provide my service. For example, if the owner wants me to walk the dog while they are at work or something, how do I do that? Do they usually hide a key, or am I to ask for a copy of a key, or would they leave their dog in a yard? It's a weird question, but I really am not sure how to approach it. I want to be as respectful as possible to the owner, their dog, and their property. Also, if someone were to ask me how should we arrange the dog walking, I want to be able to give them all the possibilities I can.
I wouldn't pay someone to come meet my pets and me. Consider it like a job interview. You don't get paid for a job interview.-I was hoping to do a free "meet up" to get to know the owner and the dog, and how they are. Maybe do a trial walk with the dog and see how it is with me. Is this a good idea?
I expect that if my pet's water bowl is empty, it will be refilled. I also expect poop to be picked up, and my dog to be wiped down quickly if he decides to go for a roll in the mud during the dog walker's visit. If I was doing long-term pet sitting, I would always take in the mail, water plants, switch lights on and off, etc... as needed. I appreciate a note saying how my pets were when the sitter came by.-Is it normal for a dog walker to provide free services as a complimentary addition to dog walking? I was thinking about offering to fill water and food bowls, bringing in the mail or taking out the trash as like a "thank you".
My dog walker charges $15/visit. At this rate it's easier for us to just come home for lunch and walk the dog. If someone was coming to our home daily, I'd rather negotiate a weekly rate.-What kind of rates do you guys specifically charge/pay for? I've check a few around where I live, I'm just curious for other people, lol.
Sittercity, craigslist, the local vets office. If you don't have a vehicle, you're severely limiting your ability to take on clients. I would not want a pet sitter who was unable to quickly take my pets to the vet in case of illness or emergency.-Also what are good ways to advertise myself that you have found effective? Or how did you find your dog walker? I was thinking about posting an online ad, and posting some posters around my area, but I feel like this won't be enough. I'm not sure what other ways to advertise myself. I don't have a vehicle, so I'm restricted to dog walk locally.
As a new dog walker, I wouldn't handle really difficult dogs. You'd probably want to be bonded and insured before you did something like that.-Should I charge an extra fee for really difficult dogs? I've seen a small fee on other dog walking ads for dogs that are hard to handle. Is this a good idea, or would it be a put off for potential clients? I would add maybe $2 to my base amount if I do, but should I?
I just leave cash with a note on the counter. I don't pay in advance. When I pet sat a lot (when I say a lot, I mean I wouldn't live in my own home for weeks because I was staying with other peoples' pets in their homes), I would only ever get paid at the end of an extended visit. If I was doing single walks, the payment was usually left at the time of the walk. If I was doing multiple visits (daily walks for a week), I'd usually just get paid once a week. I had one client whose wife was out of town caring for a sick parent off and on for several months, and he worked as a doctor and had irregular hours, and he would call me on the fly to go over and take care of the pets. We'd just tally up how many visits every week or two and he'd leave me a check.-Here one of my bigger questions... How do I accept payment? Do I ask for payment before the service or after the service? Is it better to ask for payment at the end of a week or two, or after so many walks? How do you guys ask for payment/ or pay your dog walker? I feel so awkward about this part, almost guilty, I think it's just a thing with me and accepting anything from another person, but that's a different story, LOL.
Wow....I think im in love with the dog walker..She texted me every Sunday evening to check the next week's schedule. She was flexible, so I paid her by the day ($17/day). If I only needed her 4 days the next week, I only paid for 4 days. She would also water plants if I wanted her to (say, if I were on vacation). Difficult dogs were part of her job, I think. She would also use whatever training method you wanted (I was working on potty training with my puppy and was using clicker/treat training).
She also brought in my trash can from the street on trash day, and my recycle bins on recycling day. She would have also brought in the mail, had it been there when she came.
She was great - a genuinely nice person! I hated it when I didn't need her anymore - but my pocketbook was so thankful!Wow....I think im in love with the dog walker..