Seeing dog walkers/trainers/pet handlers let their dogs run in non designated areas, especially on sidewalks (I see it on Instagram, in person, Facebook) made me write this post and question you pet pawrents …do you know what your dog walker/trainer/handler does while your dog is in their care?
Do you know if they actually take care of your pet? Do they let your pets run in undesignated areas, such as sidewalk, in front of people’s lawns, into the streets? Do they misuse equipment on your dog? Are collars/harness properly fitted?
Letting dogs off leash in unsafe areas (i.e., streets, people’s lawns, sidewalks) is UNSAFE for the dog and everyone around. I saw a very concerning video on Instagram yesterday, where a dog was chasing after a squirrel and almost getting into an accident with a car. This happened on Queen St. West. I know many people who live there and their dogs so to me it is EXTREMLY concerning that certain dog professionals conduct themselves in unsafe ways with their pets. Or anyone’s pet in general.
Let’s talk about what we can ask your pet professional:
- Will you be letting my dog off leash in unsafe/non designated dog areas?
Please don’t let dogs off leash in areas where they aren’t allowed to be off leash (i.e., streets, side walks, people’s lawns, baseball fields) as accidents may happen and have happened resulting in death.
- Will my dog be under video surveillance? How often will they provide updates?
Ask your dog walker/trainer/pet handler to record their walking, training or whatever interaction they may have with your dogs.
- What sort of training strategies do you practice and implement?
- How will you ensure the safety of my dog? What sort of safe practices will you implement?
- How safe are pet toys you use with my dog?
- How do you ensure my pets are safe in your car? I witnessed with my own eyes a dog walker opening a car and letting the dog run out across the street while she was locking her car.
Are you trained for Pet First Aid & CPR?
- Do you know how to break up fights safely?
- Do you know how to work with a reactive dog?
- How will others recognize who you are? Do you have your company logo on your hat/coat/backpack?
- Are you familiar with dog body language?
- Will you be leaving my dog in the car unsupervised with other dogs? Or at your home?
Anyone can say they can be a pet professional so please ask for their references, do the review search, look at their instagram videos/photos/posts and if it feels wrong, don’t leave your pets with them. Say no.
I don’t know about you, but I like to be super informed about what my pet is doing while they aren’t with me. What are you doing to ensure my pet’s well-being? What are you doing to expose my dogs to danger?