The average cost of dog walking in the UK is now £11.25 per walk. Depending on where you live, however, you may pay up to 31% more for dog walking than other areas. To see how much you'll pay for a dog walker in your area, see below for dog walking prices in a dozen cities around the UK.
- How Much Do Dog Walkers Charge in the UK?
- POLL: How Much Does Your Dog Walker Charge?
- How to Save Money on Dog Walking
- How to Pick a Dog Walker
Average UK Dog Walking Cost
According to over 1,600 quotes gathered from DogBuddy, we found a dog owner will pay £11.25 on average to have their dog walked by a dog walker in the UK. This figures represents an increase of 8.5% from 2018, but some areas have seen much larger increases (as discussed in the following section). The cost of hiring a dog walker varies according to factors such as the geographic area and experience of the dog walker, with the cheapest quotes coming in at just £5 and the most expensive at £25.
|UK Dog Walking Quotes||Price per Walk|
Average Dog Walking Cost in Cities Across the UK
Dog walking prices vary significantly according to where you live. Not surprisingly, dog owners in London pay the most for dog walking, where an average walk now costs £13.45 (or £13.43 on weekends) but some dog walkers charge as much as £25.
Dog owners in Sheffield and Belfast pay the least overall, where dog walkers charge an average of £10.26 or £10.44, respectively, for a walk. In fact, those in Sheffield and Belfast pay around 23% less than London pet owners on average. And the cheapest dog walkers in these areas charge as little as £6 or £8, respectively.
However, dog walks between £5 and £8 can be found no matter where you live—but these figures represent the very cheapest dog walkers available.
See the table below to find dog walking prices near you.
|Rank (1 = cheapest)||City||Lowest Price||Highest Price||Average Price||3-Year Increase|
As you can see in the table, dog walking prices has risen substantially in some areas. Of note are Manchester, where average dog walking costs have risen 18% or £1.78 from £9.68 to £11.46 between 2018 and 2021. Prices are also up 17% in Leeds and Bristol, as well as 15% in Birmingham.
A £1.78 rise in the cost of a dog walk (like the increase seen in Manchester) might not sound like much at first glance, but consider a dog owner who needs someone to walk their dog everyday while they're at work. That person would now spend an extra £445 a year (£1.78 x 250 working days a year)—that's about what most people spend on car insurance each year!
POLL: How Much do Dog Walkers Charge?
If you've ever paid a dog walker to take your four-legged friend out and about, please let us know how much they charged for a walk. If you've had multiple dog walkers charging different amounts, feel free to submit up to three responses to the poll. Once you answer, the poll automatically displays the results from everyone who has submitted an answer, so you can compare prices and see if you're paying too much or getting a great deal!
How to Save Money on Dog Walking
Dog walking costs can really add up over time, especially if your dog needs frequent walks. For example, given the average £10.37 cost charged by UK dog walkers, a dog needing a professional walk 5 days a week would cost their owner £2,696 over the course of a year. If you're budget conscious, here are some tips to help you save money on dog walking:
- Borrow My Doggy connects dog owners with trusted local people who love to look after dogs—and will do so for free! In addition to walks, you can arrange playtime and overnight stays for when you go on holiday. Owners pay £44.99 per year for premium membership—the cost of less than 5 dog walks.
- Ask about discounts for regular walks.
- Find an individual walker not a large company, and you may pay less as there are fewer overheads.
- Compare Prices on a website such as DogBuddy, which connects dog owners with dog walkers in their local area.
How to Pick a Dog Walker
When looking for a new dog walker, first ask around for personal recommendations—you may save time looking for a dog walker plus gain comfort that you're leaving your dog with someone trusted and reliable. Whether you use a recommendation or you're starting from scratch, be sure the dog walker meets your standards. Here are some questions you may want to ask a potential dog walker:
- How many dogs do you walk at a time? While a few dogs can certainly be more fun on a walk than just one, be sure the dog walker doesn't take too many dogs out at once. Too many dogs can lead to conflict or increase the odds a dog goes missing. In fact, members of the National Association of Pet Sitters & Dog Walkers (NarpsUK) must agree to walk at most 4 dogs at a time.
- Do you walk with anyone else? Ideally, a dog walker doesn't meet up with a fellow dog walker for walks. You want your dog walker to pay full attention to the dogs in their care, not be distracted by another group of dogs or talking with a friend.
- What kind of dogs do you walk together? Depending on the temperament of the dogs involved, it isn't always a good idea to have a mix of large and small dogs on a walk. For example, a boisterous lab might unintentionally frighten or even injure a small dog. Ask how a dog walker takes these factors into consideration.
- How long is the dog walk? Be sure to find out how long your dog will be walked—independent of travel time. If you're expecting an off-lead walk, find out how long your dog will be running free without a lead.
- How are you insured? A dog walker should be insured to cover any incidents whilst your dog is in their care—say if your dog bites someone. For example, all bookings made via DogBuddy are covered by £1.7M public liability insurance and £2,000 vet reimbursement. Even if you have pet insurance, make sure your dog walker is insured separately as most pet insurance plans exclude liability cover for incidents that occur while your dog is in the care of a business or a professional and you are paying for their services. (For the avoidance of doubt, it's best to have your own dog insurance in addition to ensuring a dog walker is insured.)
- What courses have you taken? Ideally, a dog walker has sought out training and taken courses such as animal first aid, animal behaviour and animal care.
- How do you transport dogs? Depending on how long your dog will travel and the number of dogs being transported at once, you might look for different vehicle features. Does the dog walker use a special vehicle that maximizes airflow? Does the dog walker separate dogs with individual crates? Also, be sure a dog walker will never leave your dog unattended in a vehicle—in addition to the risk of death on a warm day, dog thieves are known to target dogs left in cars.
- Do we sign a service contract? Dog walking service contracts and booking forms are important to clarify expectations and responsibilities of both parties, to help you avoid conflict later.
In addition to these questions, it's a good idea to meet a dog walker in person before the first walk to see how they get along with your dog. Look to see how the dog walker initially greets your dog, how affectionate and authoritative they seem (you'll want a mix of both) and what the general chemistry is like (e.g., how does your dog act around the dog walker?).
Also, a good dog walker will ask you lots of questions about your dog, so they know as much as possible about your dog's like and dislikes (e.g., scared of big dogs, loves to carry a stick but is possessive of it, etc.) before they venture out together. If you live near a university, you might find some students (even vet students) who miss their dogs at home and are looking for companionship—a win-win for everyone!