The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.

Review of BorrowMyDoggy: A Great Solution for Me?

BorrowMyDoggy is a unique website which connects dog owners with local people who love dogs so much, they'll look after them for free. It can be a great alternative to leaving a dog home alone during the day or in a traditional, impersonal kennel when you're on holiday. Borrowers also benefit from the opportunity to spend time with a dog without the commitment of owning one. Read our review to learn more about the service.

Our Thoughts: BorrowMyDoggy Review

BorrowMyDoggy can be a great resource both for dog owners and for borrowers. It connects owners who can use an extra set of hands providing care, attention or activity for their dog (perhaps due to health, work, family commitments or travel) with someone who wants to spend time with a dog. The idea behind the service is for dog owners and borrowers to develop a trusted relationship, with a borrower helping with dog walks or dog sitting as needed.

For owners who are anxious about leaving their beloved dog with someone else, the BorrowMyDoggy concept can provide some comfort that a dog is being cared for by someone who really just loves dogs—they must, because they look after them for free. And BorrowMyDoggy encourages the borrower, owner and dog to meet up in the park or the borrower's home to help establish a trusting relationship from the beginning.

Borrowers are typically people who love dogs but can't have one of their own. For example, a borrower could be an away-from-home student who misses their own dog, a professional with weekday work commitments or perhaps a family who can't have a dog for some reason, but whose children desperately want a dog. That said, some dog owners also sign up to be a borrower to help socialize and entertain their own dog!

Finding Your Match

After signing up to either a Basic or Premium membership, you can view profiles of members in your area to find someone you want to contact. Both owners and borrowers alike can benefit from browsing through profiles, and it will help you narrow down your "ideal" dog or borrower. You'll come realize what you really care about.

Finding the right dog or borrower can take some time. As there are more borrowers on the site, help your profile stand out. Try for some high-quality photos and be sure the description of your experience with dogs demonstrates just how much you love them—explain what a day in your care might entail and also past experiences, in detail.

Basic vs. Premium Membership Features

There are two types of membership: Basic and Premium. Basic membership simply lets you browse through member profiles to decide if there may be some good matches in your area. If there are, you can then pay for a Premium membership. With Premium membership you can message other members and benefit from a 24/7 vet help line and accident and third party liability insurance.

Types of BorrowMyDoggy MembershipView ProfilesMessage other MembersInsurance Coverage
Basicxx
Premium

By starting with a Basic membership, you can decide if Premium would be worth the cost. With a Basic membership you can view other member profiles to see who's in your area. If you find some people you'd like to contact, then you'll need to sign up to a Premium membership in order to message with them.

Safety and Security

Many aspects of the BorrowMyDoggy service help to ensure the safety of all involved. For instance, the phone numbers and home addresses of all Premium members are verified before they can message. Before an owner leaves a dog with a borrower, it's recommended for owner, dog and borrower to all meet, perhaps in the dog's favorite park or the borrower's home—or both. Making sure the dog and borrower get along well it critical, but the chemistry is typically evident right away.

To help answer any questions you may have about a dog's health, members can access a 24/7 vet line. Additionally, dogs in the care of a borrower are covered by £1 million of accident and third party liability insurance (details here). Note, this insurance cover is only effective while a dog is in a borrower's care and is therefore not a replacement for a dog's normal pet insurance.

What to Look Out For

If you take out a Premium membership to start messaging other members, be aware that those with a Basic membership can receive your message but they cannot reply (unless they also pay to upgrade to Premium). As a result, you may send a number of messages into the ether which will never receive a response. Look for a yellow crown next to members' names or profile pictures throughout the site to find members with a Premium membership.

Cost

The Basic BorrowMyDoggy membership is free, but is quite limited in scope—Basic only allows you to view profiles. If you want to message then you'll need to pay up for a Premium membership. BorrowMyDoggy Premium membership is paid on an annual basis—after that, no money changes hands because borrowers do not charge owners for looking after their dogs. Dog owners pay more, but the £44.99 annual fee is less than what you'd pay for 5 paid dog walks, based on the average cost of dog walks in the UK.

Annual BorrowMyDoggy Premium Membership Fees
Dog owners£44.99
Borrowers£12.99

The annual fee covers BorrowMyDoggy's verification process and provides access to £1 million of accident and third party liability insurance and a 24/7 Vet Line.

Final Thoughts

Given the cost of dog walkers, kennels and carers, BorrowMyDoggy has the potential to save a dog owner a significant amount of money depending on their dog care needs. And borrowers can benefit from forming a strong relationship with a dog—without the responsibilities or costs of dog ownership. Another option for those looking to spend time with dogs would be signing up to DogBuddy or even start your own dog walking business. But if you don't want the headache of running a business and you're just after some dog companionship, then BorrowMyDoggy may be a great solution. Whether you're a borrower or a dog owner, you may have to be patient finding the right match—not unlike using a dating website!

Comments and Questions

The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.