Finding the Perfect Dog Walker

Guest blog from Jaime of Happy Tails! Thanks, Jaime, for sharing such great tips with us!

There is no question, that we Philadelphians love our pets! Walking through the streets of our city on a daily basis, it’s inevitable that you’ll see dogs being walked and cared for. So, while you are at work or away on vacation, who is watching your beloved fur babies? Just like with any professional, not all dog walkers are the same and some are more qualified, experienced and invested than others.  And just like with meeting a new person, you and your dog will find a better connection with some walkers than others. Following these steps will ensure that the experience is a smooth and positive one in finding the perfect match for you and your dog.

Finding the Perfect Pet Sitter/Dog Walker for your Pet

  • Referrals are a good place to find pet sitters. Ask your local veterinarian, neighbors, pet supply shop, and friends.
  • Ask for professional references. Three is recommended.
  • Ensure the sitter/walker is fully Bonded & Insured:  Accidents do happen and any professional pet sitter/dog walker will have the appropriate liability insurance and will be fully bonded.
  • Are they professionally certified? Professional certifications provide a complete and well rounded education for a professional pet sitter.
  • Always do a Meet n Greet with your sitter and your pet(s) present to observe interactions and establish a "comfort level" for you, the pet(s) and your sitter. Pet sitting and Dog Walking is a personal relationship so you should always hire someone you have confidence in.
  • Guarantee the company offers 7-day per week telephone and email availability and rapid response.  Always ask for their phone number and email address.
  • Make sure your sitter has "backup" sitters in place should your sitter have an emergency that prevents them from completing your assignment.
  • Always confirm your sitter will leave you a report card at the completion of their assignment so you know what occurred while away (note or text message is great).
  • Pet Sitters/Dog Walkers should always ask for a medical and behavioral history about your pet(s) as well as veterinary and other emergency contact information

Yes, this may seem like a lot of work but it will ensure that you have a professional pet sitter/dog walker taking care of your wonderful pet(s). It ensures love and care when you can’t be there!

With Love and Care for all of Philadelphia’s Pets,


Happy Tails of Philly

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