What are the disadvantages of being a dog walker?

Answered by Tom Adger

Being a full-time dog walker definitely has its challenges and downsides. Here are some of the disadvantages that I’ve personally experienced in this profession:

1. Inconsistent pay: One of the biggest cons of being a dog walker is that your income can be quite unpredictable. Since dog walkers are typically paid per walk or per hour, the number of clients and their needs can vary greatly from week to week. This means that some weeks you may be fully booked and earning a decent income, while other weeks you may struggle to find enough clients to make ends meet. It’s important to budget and save money during the busy times to help cover any financial gaps during slower periods.

2. Difficult clients: Just like in any service industry, dog walkers can encounter challenging clients. Some pet owners may have high expectations, demanding specific routes, strict schedules, or extra services without being willing to pay extra. Dealing with demanding or unreasonable clients can be stressful and can affect your overall job satisfaction.

3. Strange problems with dogs: Dogs are unpredictable creatures, and as a dog walker, you’re bound to encounter some unusual situations. This can range from dealing with aggressive or overly anxious dogs to handling dogs with health issues or behavioral problems. While some of these situations can be challenging, they also require quick thinking and problem-solving skills to ensure the safety and well-being of both the dogs and yourself.

4. If you don’t like dogs, this isn’t the “pawfect” job for you: This may seem obvious, but it’s worth mentioning that being a dog walker requires a genuine love and passion for dogs. If you’re not a dog person, spending your days surrounded by canines may become tiresome and overwhelming. Dogs can be messy, energetic, and require a lot of attention and care. So, if you don’t have a natural affinity for dogs, this may not be the right career choice for you.

5. Picking up poop: It’s no secret that dog walkers have to deal with poop on a daily basis. From carrying poop bags to cleaning up after dogs during walks, it’s definitely not the most glamorous part of the job. If you have a weak stomach or find the idea of handling dog waste unpleasant, then dog walking may not be the best fit for you.

While being a full-time dog walker can be an enjoyable and rewarding job for those who love dogs, it’s important to consider the potential drawbacks. From inconsistent pay to difficult clients and the less glamorous aspects of the job, being a dog walker requires patience, flexibility, and a genuine affection for our furry friends.