What qualifications do I need for dog walking?

What is Dog Walking?

Dog walking is a career that involves taking care of dogs, providing companionship and exercise, and ensuring their safety. Dog walkers are responsible for walking dogs, playing with them, and providing other activities that keep them active and entertained. Dog walking can be a great way to work with animals and provide a valuable service to dog owners.

What Qualifications Do I Need for Dog Walking?

To become a successful dog walker, you will need a range of qualifications and skills. Here are some of the qualifications that you should consider when applying for a dog walking job:

1. Dog Handling Skills

The most important qualification for dog walking is being able to handle dogs. You should know how to read a dog’s body language and be able to handle them in a way that is safe and comfortable for both the dog and yourself. You should also be comfortable with different breeds of dogs and be able to recognize when they need help or special attention.

2. First Aid Training

It is important to have a basic understanding of first aid for dogs, in case of any potential accidents or injuries. You should also be prepared to administer basic first aid, such as wound care and CPR, in the event of an emergency.

3. Knowledge of Dog Psychology

Having a good understanding of dog psychology is essential for a successful dog walker. You should be able to recognize signs of stress or fear in a dog and respond appropriately. You should also know how to provide positive reinforcement and be able to recognize a dog’s needs.

4. Understanding of Dog Behavior

As a dog walker, you should understand basic dog behavior, such as barking, aggression, and body language. You should also be aware of common behavioral issues, such as separation anxiety, and be able to recognize when a dog needs help or special attention.

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5. Patience and Compassion

Dog walking requires patience and compassion. You should be able to remain calm in stressful situations and be able to handle each dog with kindness and understanding. You should also be able to recognize when a dog needs a break or special attention.

6. Good Physical Fitness

Dog walking requires physical fitness, as you may need to walk for long distances and in all weather conditions. You should also be able to lift and carry heavy items, such as dog food and water bowls.

7. Time Management Skills

As a dog walker, you will need to manage your time efficiently and be able to stay organized. You should be able to coordinate multiple dog walks in a single day and be able to arrive at each location on time.

8. Responsible Driving

You may need to drive to different locations, so you should have a valid driver’s license and a good driving record. You should also be comfortable driving in different conditions, such as snow and rain.

9. Knowledge of Local Laws and Regulations

You should be aware of the local laws and regulations related to dog walking. You should also be familiar with the requirements for taking a dog out in public, such as leash laws and dog waste disposal.

10. Business Skills

Having business skills is beneficial for dog walkers. You should be able to market your services, create a professional website, promote your business, and reach out to potential clients. You should also have good customer service skills, as you will be dealing with clients on a regular basis.


Dog walking is a rewarding career that requires a range of qualifications and skills. To become a successful dog walker, you should have excellent dog handling skills, first aid training, knowledge of dog psychology, understanding of dog behavior, patience and compassion, good physical fitness, time management skills, responsible driving, knowledge of local laws and regulations, and business skills.

With the right qualifications and skills, you can provide a valuable service and make a difference in the lives of dogs and their owners.


  • Dog Walking
  • Dog Handling Skills
  • First Aid Training
  • Dog Psychology
  • Dog Behavior
  • Patience and Compassion
  • Physical Fitness
  • Time Management Skills
  • Responsible Driving
  • Local Laws and Regulations
  • Business Skills