A Full-Time Dog Walker?: Pros & Cons

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As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of people are quitting their 9–5 jobs to work with pets instead. Jobs aren't as safe as they used to be, so many people who want to start walking dogs don't see it as a big risk to change careers.

But is it really a walk in the park to spend your days taking care of dogs? Dog walking and other pet care services are easier to find than ever before. This makes many dog lovers wonder if they could make a living by walking dogs. Can you walk dogs for a living? Let's take a look!

Can you really make a living by walking dogs?

Yes, walking dogs all day is possible. Over 48 million homes in the United States have dogs as pets. That's a lot of walks!

There are more ways than ever to find new dog clients, and one of them is the Scout app, which works on both iOS and Android. Whether you live in a big city or a small town, it won't be hard for you to find dogs to walk.

Pros and cons of walking dogs full-time

Pros of being a full-time dog walker

  • Work whenever you want. No more being called in at the last minute or working extra hours.
  • Take care of yourself. There are no office politics or reviews. People are much worse coworkers than dogs.
  • Hang out with dogs all day. Dog walking is a great way to spend more time with your furry friends if you live in an area where pets aren't allowed or if you just like to play with puppies.
  • Find new friends. Most of your clients will be nearby, so you can get to know your area and make some new friends.
  • Great exercise. Walking a dog is good for your heart, lowers your blood pressure, and does a lot more. You stay healthy while you work when you walk a dog.
  • Perfect for students or older people. Because of how flexible it is, walking dogs is a great job for retirees, students, or anyone who wants to try something new.
  • You can learn on the job. Most dog walkers have a lot of experience with dogs, but there's always something more they can learn. Pet caregivers will learn a lot of new ways to train dogs by taking them for walks.

Cons of being a full-time dog walker

  • Inconsistent pay. Dog walkers don't get a fixed salary, so they'll have to save and spend their money better.
  • Difficult clients. Pet parents can be very picky about their pets, which can cause problems between the pet walker and the client.
  • Strange problems with dogs. Every dog is different and can be hard to predict. People who walk their dogs could get scratched or bitten. A dog in your care could also get hurt by accident.
  • If you don't like dogs, this isn't the "pawfect" job for you. Someone who doesn't like dogs may get bored if they have to walk dogs all day.
  • Picking up poop! Even if you like dogs, it's not fun to have to clean up after them when you take them for a walk.

Other jobs for pet sitters

Many dog walkers also work in other pet care jobs to make more money.

Pet sitting and boarding

Mix your dog's walking duties with overnight care for the dog. Dog sitting and boarding are "great" ways to add to your list of pet care services.


Drop-ins involve going to a client's house for 20 minutes to feed and water the dog, let it out to go to the bathroom, and do other things. Pet caregivers like these services because they are short and easy to understand.


If you know how to train dogs and work as a freelancer, you could make a lot of money. Training can be done in person or online, right from your own home.

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