Break out the leashes and the poop bags! There’s never been a better time to be a dog walker.
Who says so? Well, The New York Times says so. It just ran an article about professional dog walkers in Manhattan who are making more than $100,000 a year.
And, sure, most of us don’t live in Manhattan, and most dog walkers don’t really earn six-figure salaries. But this is still a lucrative time to walk dogs for a living, either full time or as a side gig . And it’s all because of the pandemic puppies.
Pandemic pups? Yup. During the quarantine conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic, when we as a collective nation were all stuck at home, more than 23 million American households acquired a dog or a cat, According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
That’s nearly 1 in 5 households! That’s tens of millions of new pets that need tending to, every single day. “With many Americans back in the office, somebody has to walk all those pandemic puppies,” the Times pointed out.
How to Get Started as a Dog Walker
Sounds great, right? Lots of fresh air and exercise and dogs, what could be better? But how can you set yourself up for success?
You could get started the old-fashioned way: Tell all your friends and neighbors, then put up some handmade leaflets in strategic spots around your town. Post it on Craigslist and announce it on all your social media profiles, too.
These days, though, most beginning dog walkers are finding work on apps.
The rise in dog walking as a job or side gig can be partly attributed to the rise of dog-walking and pet-sitting apps that have hit the market in recent years, modernizing this whole process. The most popular ones are Rover and Wagwhich were founded in 2011 and 2015, respectively.