There is a new site that brings together dog walkers and dog sitters with dog owners in need of someone to take care of their pooch: Rover.com. This site is 100 percent focused on connecting you with pet owners looking for your services.
As a dog walker, sitter or boarder, you offer up your services to dog owners looking to get someone to care for their pooch.
Dog owners check the site for sitters and walkers in their area and pick the one they like. The site handles the money transfer. Rover is a welcomed alternative to leaving the dog alone or cooped up all day, with an unwilling friend or family member, or at the kennel.
Dog walking and sitting services have increased in popularity. According to the American Pet Products Association, pet owners spend more than $72 billion per year on pet-related goods and services.
More and more busy professionals are looking for ways to help their dog get in some exercise during the day by using dog walking services. For those who travel frequently, especially for work, finding a reliable sitter or boarder can put their mind at ease while they’re away from home.
Ready to give dog walking a try? First, let’s address one of the common questions about this side hustle:
How Much Do You Earn as a Dog Walker?
According to PayScale, the average dog walker makes $13.94 per hour. This includes both independent business owners as well as those who work for a company providing this service. In addition, this hourly rate is the average across the entire U.S. – from Tampa to Seattle.
There are many factors that go into how much you earn as a dog walker. For starters, where you are located matters in terms of how you price your services. In addition, you need to look at the demand for your services in your area.
Provided there is a high demand for dog walkers, you may be able to charge higher rates if you run your own business. Urban areas popular with young professionals tend to have a higher demand for dog walking services.
However, if you’re in a more rural area, there may not be many people needing dog walking. To increase your earnings, you should walk several dogs at the same time. Most walkers charge per dog per day so by walking several dogs at a time, you can make more.
Where you live in the U.S. also affects how much you can charge for this service. The cost to walk a dog in Houston will be different than the same service in New York City. The best way to get an idea of how much to charge is to try different pricing options.
You can also scope out the competition to see how much they charge for similar services. This will give you a ballpark idea of how much pet owners are willing to pay in your area.
Why a Dog Walking or Sitting Business is a Great Side Hustle
Becoming a dog walker or a dog sitter is a great side gig since there is no exclusive training or certification. The main qualifications are a love for animals, being reliable, and being able to provide pets with safe, loving care.
You can make an extra $500 or even $1,000 doing this as a side gig once you hit your stride. That’s not small change – it can help you pay extra toward your mortgage, save for a vacation or a car, and so on.
It’s a flexible gig and you can make your own schedule. You can choose to work as much or as little as you want. If you have a large expense coming up, simply pick up a few more gigs to help you cover it.
Don’t mind watching other types of pets and not just canines? Rover can help you connect with just about any type of animal lover out there, including people who have lizards, turtles, hamsters, cats, and more.
There are many options for increasing your earnings while cuddling with some furry friends.
How to Start a Dog Walking Business
If you’re ready to start making money as a dog walker, you can either start your own business or work for a company. Working for someone else might be easier and less time consuming but you’ll make less.
To maximize your earnings, you can start your own business and keep all of the profit for yourself. However, if this is your side hustle, you need to be strategic about how much time you spend getting your business off the ground.