Warning for those who use walkers

(48 Posts)
Doggydoggydoggy Fri 15-Mar-19 15:51:58

Please be very careful who you use.

In the interests of hopefully not being outed I am not going to reveal the name but I used to use this dog walking company and trusted them wholeheartedly.

A few months ago they posted footage that made me very uncomfortable.
In it, they threw a handful of treats into the grass while a group of (unknown to each other) dogs belonging to different clients descended, pushing and shoving each other to find the coveted treats.

I thought about questioning them on this regarding the risk of dog fights and introducing resource guarding into dogs that previously have no issues but in the end let it slide.

Today, they posted horrifying footage of an enormous retriever repeatedly pinning down and humping a tiny dachshund who was repeatedly showing teeth, warning the other dog off.
When the retriever finally stopped it gave a big stress shake off.

I will never again trust anyone to look after my precious dog.

Their lack of knowledge on body language and behaviour is just shocking, when questioned by, i am assuming another client, their response was ‘that’s how the golden likes to play’.

Anyone who reads my posts often will know that my dog can be reactive with other dogs.

I know for a fact she would 100% roared at, quite possibly bitten this golden had god forbid he had done it to her.

I am just shocked and gutted at what I saw and wonder how many potentially dangerous situations my dog was potentially put in staying with them..

So please be really careful to make sure the walker you are using is reputable, with good knowledge of dog behaviour and how to keep them safe.

OP’s posts: |
MarcoPoloCX Fri 15-Mar-19 16:00:10

Never chuck a load of treats on the floor. Always make them wait and take gently.

Nesssie Fri 15-Mar-19 16:03:07

If my dog had been in that pack with the treats on the floor, there would have been blood. I always stipulate my dog is to be walked individually.

Doggydoggydoggy Fri 15-Mar-19 16:04:20

I think today’s humping incident was far worse personally but yes, totally agree about the treats also.

OP’s posts: |
windydoggy Fri 15-Mar-19 16:09:28

That's not good at all , At least you found out they can't be trusted with your dog .
My darling boy is reactive to other dogs too so can imagine your heart sink at seeing this .💐

Itscoldouthere Fri 15-Mar-19 16:18:16

I witnessed a local dog walking van really speeding on a country road,I passed him 10 mins later pulled over and getting several dogs out to walk shock
I wouldn’t have been happy if my dog had been in the back of that van!

Wolfiefan Fri 15-Mar-19 16:20:22

I know one dog walker that lost a dog. She walks far too many. Some on lead and some off. None under control. Nearly being pulled over.
I also know one or two who are absolutely brilliant. Worth their weight in gold.
I’m lucky. I don’t work. If I did then I would have to trust someone.


fleshmarketclose Fri 15-Mar-19 16:23:45

I saw a walker, who walks a neighbour's dog walking seven at once. I'm sure that is too many, is there supposed to be a limit on numbers?

Floralnomad Fri 15-Mar-19 16:26:24

I’m sure there must be good dog walkers about however I’ve never met one that I’d leave my dog with . The most popular one near us I’ve personally witnessed not picking up after his own dogs so I doubt he clears up after other people’s .

anniehm Fri 15-Mar-19 16:44:24

About time they were licenced to a maximum of 3 or 4, ideally a max weight as well (4 toy dogs are manageable whereas 4 gsd are too much)

labazsisgoingmad Fri 15-Mar-19 16:47:29

we run a dog walking and pet care business and we only walk a clients dog or dogs not mixed with other clients dogs. a lot of people come to us as they know this and they dont have to worry who's dogs are walking with theirs. saying that maximum of 3 dogs so if a house has 4 or more its a case of doing two walks

Tensixtysix Fri 15-Mar-19 16:48:09

Dog walkers who have more than 4 dogs must be raking it in! They must make over £100 a day [wow]

BiteyShark Fri 15-Mar-19 16:49:53

I think with any type of business you will get both good and bad.

EcclesThePeacock Fri 15-Mar-19 16:56:38

Their lack of knowledge on body language and behaviour is just shocking, when questioned by, i am assuming another client, their response was ‘that’s how the golden likes to play’.
Bloody hell - even if it wasn't humping, rough play between differently sized dogs is a bad idea. angryWe have a dachshund, and fortunately most other dog owners aren't idiots and understand why we don't tolerate their dogs playfully putting a paw on his back.

Our previous dachshund had his eye injured by a boisterous young boxer, and ever after was aggressive towards that breed. There's a fair probability that poor little dog will become dog-aggressive (assuming she's not actually been injured).

Doggydoggydoggy Fri 15-Mar-19 16:57:56

I thought they were good biteyshark.

I have recommended them to so many people.
They have won an award too!

If I hadn’t seen that footage today I’d probably still be recommending them.

A dachshund aswell, with their delicate little backs with a massive lump of a retriever on top.

I just feel betrayed to be honest.
Because of my dogs reactivity issues I don’t trust her with anyone else, except them.
I trusted them implicitly.

I am so, so grateful there were no incidents with my dog while she was in their care.

I look at the footage and feel sick thinking about how that would have gone if that Dachshund had been my dog.

OP’s posts: |
Doggydoggydoggy Fri 15-Mar-19 17:02:10

They have deleted the post now but I still have it, a woman in my dog training group screenshotted and sent it to me.

Unfortunately the company name is at the top so I don’t feel comfortable sharing it for you all to see the horror.

Anyone know how to crop a video?
Can you even crop a video to edit out the name??

OP’s posts: |
PottyPotterer Fri 15-Mar-19 17:09:53

Unfortunately too many people see dog walking as a quick buck. You see it suggested on here all the time when someone asks how they can make extra cash. I personally wouldn't use anyone who hadn't worked with dogs in a professional capacity or anyone who walks more than 3 dogs. I work with dogs in a professional capacity and loads with clinical animal behaviourists who all say they would rather leave their dogs alone all day than use dog walkers. The majority of these walkers 'experience' seems to be that they once owned a dog hmm.

PottyPotterer Fri 15-Mar-19 17:11:11

Loads should have been liase!

Kidssendingmenuts Fri 15-Mar-19 17:23:00

I'm a dog walker and have been for many years. My packs are a maximum 5 per walk even though my insurance allows more. Unfortunately it's people like the op mentions that ruins the name for other dog walkers who put our life and soul into making sure other peoples dogs are safe and cared for while with us, after all they have trusted us to look after their fur baby. My packs are carefully selected and introduced to new dogs slowly, I know who will get on with who and who won't and I do upto three walks a day for this reason as some don't mix well with others.
I've always said that if they have time to take a video, especially something as bad as you describe then they are not giving that pack the full attention that they should and looking out for other issues. Yes I take photos when a new dog joins but that's in a secure field that no one else uses. Phones are for emergencies when your out walking and that's it especially in public places.

I hope it doesn't put you off using dog walkers as there are some gems out there. I'd personally move from the one you have. Make sure they do an initial pre visit and walk and you want a small pack for your pooch. You should be filling in a contract with them and they should also have you filling out another form for dog information ie hates and likes, vet info etc. Also another form for emergency contact details for you and a back up number.

Doggydoggydoggy Fri 15-Mar-19 17:35:00

Make sure they do an initial pre visit and walk and you want a small pack for your pooch. You should be filling in a contract with them and they should also have you filling out another form for dog information ie hates and likes, vet info etc. Also another form for emergency contact details for you and a back up number

They did all this.
As I say, I trusted them implicitly and thought they were a really good, reputable company.
They have won an award and their reviews are glowing.

Very uncomfortable reminder that you never really know what happens behind the scenes.

I’d love to show the video but as far as I can tell I’m only able to trim it, not crop the top thus removing the company name.

OP’s posts: |
Doggydoggydoggy Fri 15-Mar-19 17:39:48

For me personally, I won’t be using a walker again.
I know others do or have to and that is fine, just be careful.

But for me, no, I just feel betrayed.

My dog isn’t an easy, straightforward dog.
She is somewhat intolerant of other dogs and can be nervous and isn’t above nipping as a result.

Allowing such rude behaviour, in her case, could be disastrous.
Never again.

OP’s posts: |
labazsisgoingmad Fri 15-Mar-19 17:49:26

i wish we were raking it in an hour walk is £10 and half hour £7 and we work hard for our money that is price per dog two dogs we dont charge extra and we have a lady with three dont charge her extra either. to make up our money we have to do homesitting which means being apart a lot which i hate. this month we have 19 nights apart

Hoppinggreen Fri 15-Mar-19 18:25:38

There wa some round here that actually had a dog fall out the back of her van and die, it was awful
I’m sure there are great ones as well as bad ones but I’m glad I don’t have to use one, it’s Daycare for us ( although I know there are bad daycare services too)

pigsDOfly Fri 15-Mar-19 18:35:12

That's awful.

Fortunately I've never had to use a dog walker, but there is one locally who I've met on many occasions walking her own dog as well as other dogs she's looking after. She never has many as I think she likes to keep it small and she is lovely and probably the only person I'd trust if I did need a dog walker.

In the situation you describe OP my dog would be left traumatised, I used that word purposely, and would probably never want to leave the house or go near another dog again.


AlpacaLypse Fri 15-Mar-19 18:44:50

I've been doing it professionally for sixteen years now, and I've seen so many other people start up, realise it's not money for old rope, and stop again. The whole dog business in the UK is an unregulated mess. The Kennel Club isn't curbing the breeders of dogs with health problems. I haven't heard of or seen a council dog warden, ever. The RSPCA will only prosecute if there is physical cruelty or gross neglect, so a dog whose emotional and physical exercise needs are not being met will continue to howl piteously as it paces around a tiny space, so long as there is food water and shelter available apparently that's okay sad.

Anyone can buy a pup and proceed to feed it rubbish food, fail to train it properly, then get bored when it reaches its 'teenage' phase, flog it on a selling site, making no effort to homecheck, so it could end up being a bait dog, or dump it on a rescue, then buy another super cute puppy and do the whole thing again.

I want to see owners having to have licences in the same way as drivers have to pass a test to drive.

I work very closely with a couple of dog behaviourists. We all agree, we've never had a dog with an intrinsic behaviour problem. Just an ongoing parade of dog owners who don't understand what they're doing, or who have adopted an adult dog who hasn't been brought up properly. Misguided kindness and anthropomorphism are very hard to deal with, you have to be very tactful!

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