Posts Tagged ‘dog walking’

Pets on Tour – Bringing Your Furry Friend Along For the Ride

Sunday, December 2nd, 2012

Taking furry family members on holiday has become very popular in recent times, with many places accommodating to animal’s needs, it’s more appealing to take your pet with you than to leave them at home. Here’s a quick to do guide before venturing off on your holiday…

  • Location Considerations: Before you set off on your jolly’s you need to take into consideration your destination and how you are going to get there. Your destination should be pet friendly, so pick a location which is going to cater for your furry friend as well as having plenty of activities for both you and your pet, especially if you are taking your dog along.

 

  • Preliminary Health Checks: Make sure you visit the vet before you set off, a routine check is all that is needed, this just gives you piece of mind that everything is going to run smoothly on your holidays. Furthermore make sure your pet has an up to date microchip, this increases the safety of your companion if anything should happen, and additionally you should have a personalised collar made with a reachable contact number.

Pets on tour

  • Pet-Friendly Transport: Before you travel, it’s advised to get your pet used to the transport that you have chosen this will result in a smooth journey. When travelling by car, make sure you pack the car up before loading your pet. No matter what transportation you have chosen, the last 3 stages are crucial; make sure your pet has had plenty of exercise, enough food for a few hours of travel and that he/she has gone to the bathroom. After these preparations you are ready to go…

 

  • Panic Prevention: Revise the stresses that your beloved pet may encounter on your travels and try to avoid them. These stresses will vary depending on your pet, for dogs they feel most comfortable when with their owners as it gives them a sense of security. Cats however are very different; they are very territorial animals and feel most comfortable in familiar surroundings. Smaller animals have less stresses, and as long as they are comfortable and their habitat (i.e. enclosure or tank) is consistent, they rarely acknowledge a change in location.

 

  • Creature Comforts: Make sure you carry familiar toys and snacks with you, having items which carry the smell of home will comfort pets and will help them settle. When travelling you have the option to cage your pet or allow them to be loose. For small animals and cats it’s a must to keep them caged, this is for both yours and the animal’s safety.

Furthermore if the vehicle has to come to a sudden stop, then anything not secure whether it is a passenger or pet will become a moving risk. For dogs, it’s your choice if you want to secure them or if they are free to move around the backseat or your boot. They do demand more space than other animals and will be more comfortable when given the opportunity to move around.

 

  • Comfortable Conditions: Additionally you also have to consider the different conditions in your car. Windows should be left open when leaving a pet alone in the car. Cars standing in the sun can get very hot very fast and can cause serious problems for animals left inside. Windows should also be kept open when driving giving a continuous air flow; however be careful not to cause a draft.

 

Keeping temperature at a constant is advised.  Make sure you schedule regular stops to stretch out yours and your pet’s legs, allowing for toilet and food breaks too.

There’s nothing quite like sharing your favourite holiday experiences with your pet, so plan ahead and make your next holiday one to remember. It’s vitally important to consider their stress levels and health throughout the journey, and also to check on them at regular intervals to ensure they’re happy.

This article was written on behalf of Pet Health Info. Pet Health Info is a free online resource providing advice for pet owners regarding pet health care.

Photo Credit: Catskills Grrl

The Dog Walkers City Mega Membership is now available. Sign up today for a vast number of benefits ranging from premium members profiles to business guides and invoice templates. If you’re looking to be or you are a dog sitter, then this is the only membership you’ll ever need. Find out more here.

Why you should bake your own dog treats

Saturday, October 20th, 2012

We understand that you love your dog.  They don’t call dogs “Man’s best friend” for nothing!  They bring us joy, make us laugh, and comfort us when we’re feeling down.  They miss us when we’re gone, and get so excited when we’re back that you’d think we were gone for a year!  That’s why we are pet parents, not pet owners.  Our dogs are our children, and we love them as such.  So, why not feed them like we would feed our own children?  It’s easier than you might think, and a great way to get the kids involved!

There are a number of reasons to bake your own dog treats.  To start with, you are in control of exactly what is in your treats.  For anybody who has ever had a finicky dog, you know that there are some things they just don’t like.  This is especially true in the case of most treats you buy at the store; your pooch would much rather eat the burger out of your hand than chew on cheap, overly-processed treats that have an ingredient list a mile long.  So, why not compromise?  You can easily bake dog treats with peanut butter, pumpkin, cinnamon, or anything else you can think of, and those treats will be much better for your dog.

Why you should bake your own dog treats

Baking your own treats is healthier because you aren’t loading them with preservatives and importing them from some “kitchen” that may or may not care just how good those treats are.  Think of it like fast food; sure, you can get a burger through the drive through, but if you did that every day, your body wouldn’t be feeling quite as good as it would if you baked something healthy at home (and, honestly, who doesn’t love a good home-cooked meal?).

You also don’t have to worry about your dog having an allergic reaction, or developing allergies if you’re making the treats yourself.  Dogs can be just as sensitive as humans, so we should pay attention to what we give our pooch so they can live a long, happy, and healthy life.  Frequent allergies include beef, dairy, pork, soy, fish, eggs, and more.  Many popular dog treats contain these ingredients, too, limiting your choices if your pooch is allergic to any of these.

Now, you may argue that you’re not a whiz in the kitchen.  That’s perfectly understandable. Many people have grown up with a microwave oven being their primary food preparation device, so turning on the oven and baking something can seem like a foreign idea.  However, baking your own dog treats isn’t hard.  We’ve actually taken out a lot of the hard work and created something simple to bake.  If you’ve ever made a box brownie mix, you can bake your own dog treats.  That’s where Pupolicious comes in!

Pupolicious is a dog treat and icing mix, much like those boxed baking mixes you see in the store, that is quick, simple, and most important of all – healthy.  It comes with everything you need to start baking your own dog treats, and has 3 simple steps; mix, bake, and decorate.  The only things you need to make Pupolicious is a mixing bowl, rolling pin, baking sheet, a spoon, oil, water, and of course, an oven.  You can also easily flavor your treats, and http://www.pupolicious.com has flavoring suggestions and simple instructions for just that purpose.  It doesn’t stop there, however; Pupolicious is a great way to get the kids involved with the quick & easy icing mix (after all, what kid DOESN’T like decorating treats), so it’s something the whole family can do for your furry friend!

With Pupolicious’ safe, simple ingredients, you can easily bake dog treats at home, making it easier to show your dogs just how much you love them.  That’s why we call Pupolicious “the dog treat you bake with love.”

 

Author’s Notes:

Pupolicious is a new dog treat and icing mix available and made in the U.S.A.  You can read more and purchase Pupolicious at www.pupolicious.com

 

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The Dog Walkers City Mega Membership is now available. Sign up today for a vast number of benefits ranging from premium members profiles to business guides and invoice templates. If you’re looking to be or you are a dog sitter, then this is the only membership you’ll ever need. Find out more here.

Dog fouling: a messy situation

Saturday, October 13th, 2012

Britain is living through a messy situation. Dog fouling is topping local news headlines across the land and councils are still scratching their heads about how to make people more responsible for their pooch’s bowel movements.

While some are charging owners found guilty anywhere up to £1,000 for their transgressions, others continue to install bins in our parks, towns and cities, full of hope that they’ll actually be used.

However, statistics seem to indicate the situation is still a major headache for local authorities. A recent survey of over 10,000 sites by Keep Britain Tidy, for example, found that dog mess was present on seven per cent of sites. Local newspaper articles, community meetings and neighbourhood watch gatherings seem to be constantly teeming with residents unhappy with the mess in their areas – and for good reason. Ingestion of dog excrement can bring on serious health conditions.

Toxocariasis is the most major infection associated with dog muck. While rare, with around 50-100 cases recorded a year, according to the NHS, toxocariasis can bring on a range of unpleasant symptoms, even leading to blindness if left untreated.

Of course it’s the social effects that tend to offend non-pet owners, and dog-owners alike. Just how can people have the audacity, the inconsideration, the lack of respect for themselves and their animal to leave mess on our beautiful public countryside?

Well, for those who haven’t yet learnt how best to clear up after themselves, here’s a few tips that could help turn around Britain’s messy nation.

Make sure you know when they need to go

You should really know your dog well enough to see the signs when they need to go. Although this isn’t always possible, you can even take an estimated guess based on your dog’s eating habits.

Keeping a regular routine is probably one of the best ways of letting your dog know whether it’s time to go for a walk or not. With enough repetition, and adequate dog training, they’ll come to understand the signs and will hopefully do their business before you leave the house.

Find an adequate place to walk them

Needless to say, you should try where possible to take your dog to locations where dog walking is expected, permitted, and where dog bins are nearby.

Even if you live in the city, you’re sure to find routes to the park that have more verges than others, offering your dog a chance to have a toilet break on a spot where less people are likely to walk.

Be equipped for the job

Vitally, you should always be prepared for the job at hand. Always leave the house with plenty of dog bags and treats. The latter of which you can of course reward your dog for good behaviour, such as going on the grass as opposed to the pavement.

Not only will you need bags to pick up mess, but also a decent collar or even harness, so you can keep them under control at all times. Red Dingo is just one supplier that sells a variety of well constructed products that might help keep your dog on the right side of you when going to the loo. Other Red Dingo products include bowls, mattresses and tags.

 

Even when using a lead, you should be careful that your dog doesn’t roll around in the fouling of other animals (fox and horse poo are favourites for most dogs) as you could end up bringing germs into the house.

With any luck these tips will help make sure you don’t add to the already very messy issue of dog muck in the UK.

 

 

 

 

Author Bio: Joseph Smith has a degree in Zoology, as well as having owned and taken care of many animals and pets in his career. Through this article he provides you information on how to select the right facility for your dog as well as high-quality products for dogs. For more information go to http://www.muddypaws.co.uk/red-dingo-m-20.html

 

 

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The Dog Walkers City Mega Membership is now available. Sign up today for a vast number of benefits ranging from premium members profiles to business guides and invoice templates. If you’re looking to be or you are a dog sitter, then this is the only membership you’ll ever need. Find out more here.

 

How to Tell When Your Dog Needs a Walk

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

Humans take words for granted. If any of us need to take a break at the office or at home we can simply say “I need to stretch my legs for a few minutes.” Unfortunately, dogs don’t have the same luxury. Here are a few tips to help you know when your dog needs to be walked:

 

  • Is it time for them to be walked? Dogs form habits very easily, so your dog will get excited around their usual walk time. Try not to walk your dog early if they’re acting up around walk time: your dog may start exaggerating their behavior regularly because you’ve rewarded them for being dramatic. If your dog seems uncomfortable or hyper after you’ve tried to phase out a walk time, you should bring the walk back. Dogs can become anxious if their schedules are altered.
  • If your dog makes a beeline straight to you when you get home, it means they’re feeling very emphatic about telling you something. It probably means your dog needs to go for a walk. Dogs are tense when the walk in direct, straight lines and relaxed when taking curving paths towards their goal.
  • If your dog has recently put on weight, extending the length of their walk or adding a walk to their schedule is a great way to help your dog lose weight.
dog needs a walk?
  • Has your dog been having accidents? Your dog may have Cushings disease, or another issue with their elimination system.
  • If your dog is displaying anxious posture and looking at you with whale eye (large, circular shaped eyes with their whites exposed) this means your dog is very tense. If your dog is standing near the door, or alternating their gaze between you and the door, your dog is most likely telling you they feel tense because they desperately want to go outside.
  • Conversely, your dog may try to show you they need to go out by getting very excited. If your dog trembles, keeps going into “play bow” posture, or becomes extremely rowdy, your dog is probably trying to tell you they need to get out of the house and burn off some energy.
  • Puppies often touch their noses, or touch their paws to their mothers when they need something. If your dog keeps putting his paw on your knee or keeps touching you with his nose, your dog is trying to tell you they need something. That thing they need? It may be a walk.

Those are some simple ways to tell if your dog needs your attention. Remember that your dog will be less anxious and behave well if they’re walked and getting enough exercise. However, never let your dog order you to take them on a walk with frantic or disruptive behavior. It’s equally important that your dog know that you’re the boss at all times.

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The Dog Walkers City Mega Membership is now available. Sign up today for a vast number of benefits ranging from premium members profiles to business guides and invoice templates. If you’re looking to be or you are a dog sitter, then this is the only membership you’ll ever need. Find out more here.

Promoting Your Dog Walking Business (Offline)

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

This weeks blog post is a follow from last weeks online advertising guide (If you missed it you can read it here). Today we’ll look at some more traditional forms of advertising and promotion. In last weeks blog post we discussed mainly free techniques, which is what the internet is perfect for. But in the real world advertising for free becomes a bit more challenging. That being said you can still get the word out effectively on a relatively low budget.

I think one of the best ideas I’ve ever heard is utilizing the free advertising already at your disposal – YOU! As a Dog walker I assume you’ll be out in public places walking Dogs a couple of times a day. This is the perfect time and place to advertise, what better place than where other people walk their dogs? Ok so I’ll get to the point here. Go down to your local t-shirt printing shop (or order online) and get a t-shirt made up with your company name and phone number on – in large text, so that people will see it easily. It’s obviously a good idea to make sure the phrase ‘Dog walker’ is on there somewhere but you get the idea! The t-shirt shouldn’t cost more than £10/$15 and after that – free advertising!

Flyers and business cards are the next items you should be getting printed. Even on a budget, these can be printed relatively cheaply and are easy to distribute. If you have a decent printer and know how to use Photoshop or similar software than you can even do this yourself for free (or ask a friend who you think might know what they’re doing). If you have Microsoft office you could use their flyer templates, found here: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/templates/CT010104295.aspx

 

If you don’t have the know-how, there are websites that you can use to enter your details, choose from a number of templates, and get your flyers/business cards sent to you. Vista Print (http://www.vistaprint.com) is probably the most well known of these sites but there are hundreds of them, or you could use your local printers.

Distributing your flyers and business cards is a matter of being bold and asking anywhere and everywhere you think will be effective. Vets are normally willing to accept flyers, as are pet shops. Ask to put flyers in your local shop windows and on park boards if that’s allowed in your area. Always carry business cards when your out and give one to anyone that’s interested.

Local papers and magazines can sometimes have low cost advertising opportunities. Going down this route will always be a bit of a gamble, and it will be a judgement call on your behalf whether you go for it or not. Personally, I think the smaller the place you live the more effective this will be. Putting an ad in a city paper will probably not be as effective as a cheaper ad in a small town local paper. That being said there will be advertising space and classifieds in almost all papers and magazines so they’re at the least worth having a look at. Business listings in publications like the yellow pages are also worth looking into as they’re sometimes free.

The promotion of any business can be done in a whole range of ways. I think the best thing you can do is be creative and always look out for new opportunities. Word of mouth will probably always be the most effective tool at your disposal so make sure you’re always trying to spread the word about your business.

We hope you’ve found this two parter on promotion useful. Do you have any other advertising techniques that you’ve found effective? What do you think about the ones talked about here? Let us know in the comments…

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The Dog Walkers City Mega Membership is now available. Sign up today for a vast number of benefits ranging from premium members profiles to business guides and invoice templates. If you’re looking to be or you are a dog sitter, then this is the only membership you’ll ever need. Find out more here.

Catchy Dog Walking Business Name Ideas

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

dog walkers city mega
Having a catchy name
for your Dog walking business is a must if you want to stand out from the crowd when advertising. Of course in the long run it doesn’t make a difference to the quality of service that you offer, but remember; a catchy name will stick in potential customers head a lot more than a dull one. And if a name’s stuck in someone’s head they’re a lot more likely to think of you and your service in the future.

Running a dog walking directory we’ve seen a few funky and memorably names come through our digital doors. Let’s have a look at some that have stuck out the most…

  • Wiggles & Sniffs
  • Pawsitive Attention Pet Services
  • Unleashed
  • Pet Sit Pros
  • Pet Au Pair
  • Pampered Pets Co.
  • Pampered Pooches
  • The Urban Dog
  • Happy At Home Pet Sitting
  • Purrs & Woofs Pet Sitting
  • Critter Sitters
  • Pooch ‘n Pals
  • Purrrfect Pet Sitting
  • Lucky Paws Pet Care
  • Waggers Daycare
  • Fur-ever Friends
  • Creature Comforts
  • Furry Fella’s Pet Care
  • Paws ‘n Go
  • Happy Bones Pet Sitting
  • Paws On Palm Beach
  • Roll Over Rover

And the list goes on! I hope this gives you some inspiration to come up with something witty and imaginative. If you’re still stuck for ideas you could have a look through our directory at our members names.

You may of noticed that your full name rather than your business name appears on your Dog Walkers City listing at the moment. We’re in the process of amending this at the moment so soon you’ll have the option to choose between your name and your business name.

Got your own ideas or seen some others you want to add to the list? Let us know in the comments…

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The Dog Walkers City Mega Membership is now available. Sign up today for a vast number of benefits ranging from premium members profiles to business guides and invoice templates. If you’re looking to be or you are a dog sitter, then this is the only membership you’ll ever need. Find out more here.

Dealing With Aggressive Dogs

Friday, March 30th, 2012

We’ve all encountered it, and some of us will have been unlucky enough to have to deal with the problem directly with one of our own Dogs. I’m talking about Dog to Dog aggression, especially while out on walks. This can be a particularly emphatic problem for Dog walkers, as the responsibility of looking after Dogs other than our own makes the situation even more nerve racking. This subject was suggested by one of our members at Dog Walkers City and it’s one we thought was well worth covering.

Dealing with aggressive Dogs when out walking can be extremely tricky. Combine that with not knowing the Dog(s) you’re walking as well as you would your own and you have a particularly worrying situation. There is no one answer to this question but I think it’s important to pre-empt the problem from day one. This means talking openly to the owner when you first start walking their Dog (I’m talking about the client here – not the owner of an aggressive Dog) and asking them if they’ve had any experience in this area and if so, how their Dog tends to react to aggression.

It’s important to explain that you’re only asking this in case a problem arises and that you like to be as well prepared as possible if something were to happen. This should alleviate the owners concerns instead of worrying them. Once you know how a Dog reacts to aggression, you’ll be better served to deal with a situation if it occurs. The owner may also already have a trick or method that tends to work for them and their Dog. Either way, its good to discuss this subject and similar ones before you take on a new client.

Looking Dog

Of course it’s one thing discussing this with owners but it’s another when it actually happens out on a walk. Here’s the scene; Your walking two clients Dogs when you see another Dog running towards them from the other side of the field. The situation could turn aggressive, it could not. What do you do?

First, Dogs tend to be less aggressive when owners are around so call the Dogs you’re walking to your heel. If they’re not on leads already try and get their leads on them as soon as possible. Hopefully the aggressive Dogs owner should have called his Dog back to him or be trying to deal with the situation himself, if he hasn’t noticed what’s going on try calling him over.

There are varying degrees of response to aggression and how to respond ultimately depends on you and what you feel is necessary. An extreme response is pepper spray. In my research I’ve found that a lot of people carry pepper spray when walking their Dogs in case something happens. I’m sure this is an effective response to aggression, but I’m in no way advocating it. Like I said, ultimately it’s down to you. A less extreme alternative to pepper spray is simply a small spray bottle of water. This can sometimes be enough to resolve the situation and I have read of some people adding lemon to the water.

An alternative to spraying is noise. Loud noises are sometimes enough to scare a Dog away, or at least snap them out of certain behaviour. I’d recommend carrying a tin can with coins in. Shaking this when a situation arises can be very effective.

Nine out of Ten times an aggressive Dog will be dealt with by their owner straight away. But occasionally you’ll come across an owner that either isn’t responsible or just doesn’t care. If it’s one isolated encounter with this sort of Dog and owner then there’s not much you can do about it. Use the tactics above and then walk away in the opposite direction. But what do you do when you encounter the same problem and the same person over and over again.

Here you have two options. The first is to change where you walk. While not ideal, this solution may appeal to you if you don’t want to confront the owner and get drawn into a situation you could avoid. The second option is to confront the owner and, if that doesn’t work eventually report him/her. If the problem occurs over and over again then I wouldn’t hesitate to take this route. Especially if a Dogs safety is at risk.

As I said, this is a tricky subject and one I hope you won’t have to deal with very often, if at all. Do you agree or disagree with any of these tactics? Or do you have your own advice on how to deal with aggression. Let us know in the comments…

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Dog Walking Rates

Monday, February 13th, 2012

dog walkers city mega

One of the first obstacles a professional dog walker has to overcome is to set his or her rates. It can be hard to decide where to start and searching online can bring a whole range of results. There’s a few things to bare in mind when working out your price list, and a few variables that should effect your decision. Lets have a look at some of them…

First of all, starting off low is always better than starting high for a new dog walker/sitter. Especially if your initial clients are friends and family. Getting the word out that your rates are cheap is a great way to get new customers. Once you’re more established and have a fair sized customer base you can think about putting your prices up.

Let’s take a look at some average rates for walking one dog (in US dollars and UK pounds):

 

½ hour walk: $15/£10

1 hour walk: $25/£15

 

If you are being hired for multiple days during the week you could should add an extra discount as follows:

 

5 ½ hour walks: $60/£40 (works out as one day free/20% off)

5, 1 hour walks: $100/£60 (works out as one day free/20% off)

 

Remember, these rates will fluctuate in different areas and countries. For example if you live in a large city (New York, LA, London, Manchester) you could add an extra 20% on to these rates, depending on the competition in your area.

You should also charge for any food, treats, bathing and any other extras you provide. Make sure you price these extras accordingly so that they’re worth your time.

Do you agree with these rates? What do you charge and what do you charge extra for? Let us know in the comments! If you haven’t signed up to Dog Walkers City yet head to our homepage by clicking here.

The Dog Walkers City Mega Membership is now available. Sign up today for a vast number of benefits ranging from premium members profiles to business guides and invoice templates. If you’re looking to be or you are a dog sitter, then this is the only membership you’ll ever need. Find out more here.

Welcome To The Dog Walkers City Blog

Monday, February 13th, 2012

Welcome to the brand new, Dog Walkers City Blog! We hope to share a whole range of new content with you via the blog, including helpful articles, informative guides, funny videos, controversial opinion pieces and more! We encourage you to let us know your opinions in the comments below each blog post and even inform us of what you want to see more of or less of at Dog Walkers City.

If you have any suggestions of what you want to see on the blog please get in touch in the comments. We will also be looking for guest bloggers to feature on the site so if you have something you want to get off your tongue please let us know. You can even leave a link back to your website for some extra exposure.

Look out for the first main blog post very soon!