26 July ’10

Lately I have received several enquiries from people who are in the process of setting up their own dog walking businesses, or perhaps just considering the idea of becoming a dog walker, asking for my advice on how to go about it. So I decided to write a blog post covering some of the basics. My ten top tips for starting your own dog walking business are based on what has worked for me.

July 26th, 2010

1 June ’10

Let The Dogs Out has been operating for a whole year & it’s time to renew my dog walking insurance. I have chosen to take out a policy with Pet Business Insurance this year.

My cover includes:

  • Public Liability (injury to persons & damage to property) up to £2 million (for any one accident or cause)
  • Care, Custody & Control (accidental loss of or injury to animals in my care) up to £5000 (per animal)
  • Key Cover (costs incurred due to loss of any keys entrusted to me) up to £2000 (per year)

This cover compares favourably to that previously provided by NARP (which I used in the first year).

During my first year I have found that many clients (& their dogs!) value the social aspect of the walking service I provide. Under my new insurance, I will now have the flexibility to walk dogs in groups of up to 6 (previously 4), where appropriate.

Should you have any questions about any of the above, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Photocopies of my insurance documents are available to clients upon request.

Add comment June 1st, 2010

11 March ’10

Client Testimonials

Thank you to everyone who provided testimonials at the beginning of the year. These have now been added to the website & can be viewed here.

Planned changes to the service

As of 12/4/10, all walks will be of 1 hour duration i.e. I will no longer be offering 30 minute walks. This is because the overwhelming majority of my clients request 1 hour walks so fitting 30 minute walks into my schedule is becoming increasingly difficult. The rate for 1 hour walks will remain unchanged i.e. £10 for the first dog, £5 for each additional dog from a given household.

Availability

I will be unavailable for dog walking / sitting on the following dates:

  • Sat 27 March
  • Mon 12 April
  • Sat 24 – Sun 25 April
  • Sat 1 – Sun 2 May
  • Sun 30 May
  • Sat 5 June
  • Tues 29 June
  • Sat 3 July

NB with two exceptions these are all weekend dates so will not affect the majority of clients.

In addition to the above dates I also plan to take a week’s holiday at some point over the Summer. I will be sure to give you at least a month’s notice of when this will be.

Remember, you can always check my calendar if you are unsure of my availability.

Add comment March 11th, 2010

2 February ’10

Molly & Max in the snowBrrr… Let The Dogs Out has survived our first Winter! However, we have moved a little to the North. After moving house at the beginning of the year, I am no longer based in Pathhead but in Blackford in the South of Edinburgh. Sadly this has meant saying goodbye to some lovely clients who I am no longer able to reach, but on a positive note it has allowed me to welcome some great new dogs into my ‘pack’!

Add comment February 2nd, 2010

1 September ’09

Let The Dogs Out has been up & running for 3 months now & I’m pleased to say that the service seems to be a success!

I am currently walking dogs of all shapes & sizes from Pathhead, Dalkeith & Roslin in Midlothian, Cockenzie, Wallyford, Pencaitland, Prestonpans & Haddington in East Lothian, & Colinton in Edinburgh. My feet are well travelled & glad to get a rest at the end of each day, but I’m loving every minute of it!

Clients should note that there are some small changes planned to the existing service. These are outlined below & available to view in a pdf document here.

Rates

As of 1/10/9,

  • the rate I charge for 30 minutes walking time will increase from £5 to £7.

  • the rate for 1 hour walking time will remain the same at £10.

  • the charges for any additional dogs being walked from the same household also remain the same, at £3 per dog for 30 minutes walking time & £5 per dog for 1 hour walking time.

These changes reflect my experience since starting business in June that petrol & travel time costs work out the same for both 30 minute & 1 hour walks.

Walk times & durations

In order to make most efficient use of my time & petrol, whilst striving to meet each client’s individual requirements,

  • dogs who are due to be walked for 30 minutes may occasionally be walked for the longer time of 1 hour. This will be at no additional charge to the client. Please indicate if you do not wish your dog to be walked for longer than you have requested for whatever reason.

  • dogs due to be walked around midday may be walked within a window of 11am – 2pm, as this is, naturally, my busiest time of day. Again, please indicate if there is a reason why your dog cannot be walked within this more flexible time frame.

Wet weather

Now that the summer (ha!) is coming to an end, walks are bound to become wetter & muddier. I would appreciate if clients could leave out a designated towel to use for drying their dog(s). Although I always carry some towels in the car, they are bound to become soggy pretty quickly on a wet day!

Availability

I will always try & give you at least 1 month notice of any dates on which I am unable to walk your dog(s). At present the only dates I am aware of between now & Christmas when this is the case are Friday 18th September & Saturday 31st October.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any concerns regarding the above changes.

Add comment September 1st, 2009

10 August ’09

car decalYou can now spot me transporting clients’ dogs to & from walks with my new rear windscreen decal!

Special thanks to Christina of Christina Kosinki Designs for making this custom decal for me.

Add comment August 10th, 2009

9 July 09

Pictured are my new Let The Dogs Out identity tags. All  my clients will receive a complementary tag for each of their dogs. The tags are engraved with my mobile number & should be worn whenever dogs are in my care. They fasten easily onto any dog’s collar & can be removed in between times if you wish.  Thank you to Angie of Remember Wynn for creating these custom tags for me.

Add comment July 9th, 2009

2 July 09

Spot me out & about in my colourful collection of hand printed Let The Dogs Out hoodies & T’s!

I’m pictured here at Vogrie Country Park with 2 of my friend’s dogs, Millie & Alice.

Add comment July 2nd, 2009

10 June 09

Let The Dogs out will be present at the Dogs Allowed Show in Lauder this Saturday. Along with my partner & dogs, I’ll be handing out free homemade dog treats, & will be available to answer any questions you have about the service. The event is being held in the grounds of Thirlestane Castle, & is open from 10am till 4pm on both Saturday 13th & Sunday 14th June. It looks set to be a great day for all dogs & their owners!

Add comment June 10th, 2009

1 June 09

Let The Dogs Out is now officially open for business! The service was launched yesterday, at GracehoundsHot Dog Show & Spring Fair which took place in Vogrie Country Park. Promotional bags of homemade dog treats were sold, with all proceeds going to Gracehounds’ charity (Scottish Registered Charity No: SC038872). If you are interested in using the service, please get in touch!

Add comment June 10th, 2009

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