As dog owners, most of us can agree, no matter how much we love our furry best friends, it can be difficult finding the time to take them for a walk. Whether it’s a demanding work schedule, or just bad weather, everyone could use a hand when it comes to walking their dog. As new app programs like Rover and Wag emerge, it’s tempting to turn to them when walking the dog is just too much of a hassle. But there are good reasons why this might not be what’s best for your dog.
Before you take the easy route, let’s have a little chat about why you might want to stick to professional dog walking services over the cheaper app options.
Training is Better
The two biggest reasons you want to go with a reputable dog walking company over a relatively new app is the training and consistency. When you’re dealing with a reputable dog walking company, chances are, there is some kind of training involved, or references you can check yourself. For programs like Wag and Rover, the tech startups that run the app promise that they carefully screen their applicants. But screening just isn’t enough when you putting a living being in the hands of a stranger.
Considering these apps naturally attract newbie and hobbyist dog walkers, you would assume they at least offer in-depth training. Well, you would be wrong! Besides some how-to videos, there isn’t much that goes on in that department. Additionally, since the company isn’t local, it can be a lot harder to get in touch with someone, if something goes wrong. Who wants to jump through hoops when it comes to the well-being of any loved one, furry or not furry?!
It’s Better For The Dog
So, the real question here is, do you really want to trust strangers on the internet to take care of your dog? Choosing a pet sitter yourself, screening them, and getting to know them means that you’ll get to know them more before giving up your dogs. And, even better, the dog will get to know them too! If your dog has behavioral issues or doesn’t get along well with other dogs, you’ll know right away if the dog and walker are going to work well together. With a trusted dog walking company, you’ll have plenty of vetted professionals to choose from, without risking harm to your dog, or your peace of mind!
Professional dog walkers are covered for mishaps and emergencies, and for the most part, they tend to be a much safer option in a pinch. With a professional pet service, you’ll worry less about what can happen if something goes wrong. A pro team will know your routine, your dog’s likes and dislikes, and what to do in case of a variety of emergencies. Best of all, by going with a company you know and trust, you won’t scramble to know who to contact if the worst does happen.
Finally, choosing a pro service over an uber-like tech company means you can bank on the reputation of whatever dog walker you get. Word of mouth is a powerful advertiser for many of these services, and being able to ask trusted friends, neighbors, and even your local vet for advice on who to hire to pet sit or walk your fuzzy family member. Choosing an app service like Wag or Rover will undoubtedly give you local dog walkers, but generally, it takes less than 24 hours to become certified on these websites, and set yourself up as a dog walker. If you’re looking for someone with history and a reputation in your local pet community, better to go with an established professional.
There’s no doubt that technology has made our lives easier in many ways. From food delivery to easy transportation options, app services like Uber have changed the way we do a lot, But often, these tech marvels begin with an idea that already exists, and simply leave their services less regulated. And that’s not a safe risk to take when you’re talking about your dog. Instead of a service like Rover or Wag, consider checking with your local trainers, breeding club, or vet for a dog walking and pet sitting service that comes well-vetted and can verify its experience and standard.