A love of dogs and a willingness to brave all kinds of weather makes for the ideal dog walker. No matter how much you love dogs, though, it's wise to make sure you can make a reasonable income as a dog walker before you pursue it as a business. The salaries of other dog walkers can give you an indication of how much money you can make.
The average dog walker in the United States makes £27,950 a year, according to the Simply Hired job board. This estimate is based on the salaries listed for all job listings that mention a dog walker. It doesn't account for the various details of all dog walking job listings, but it's a reasonable estimate for how much you can expect to make in a year with a dog-walking service.
One factor unaccounted for in the national average is the market for dog walking services in various parts of the country. A dog walker in Boston, for example, makes almost £6,500 more per year than one in Charlotte, NC, according to Salary Expert. This may be because dog owners in Boston are willing to pay more for the service or because fewer people need it in Charlotte. Dog walkers in northern states average salaries of £13,887, while those in western states average £12,668 and those in southern states average £11,436.
By Years Experience
As with any profession, customers are willing to pay you more if you prove you have the experience to provide exceptional service. With one to four years of experience, you can expect to make between £13,650 and £26,000 a year, according to PayScale. That's an average salary of £19,825. The data doesn't list the salaries of more experienced dog walkers, but as the national average is £27,950 you may be able to make as much.
Dog walkers don't always just walk dogs. You can make more money by providing other services to your customers, such as pet sitting and grooming. The average pet sitter makes £20,800 a year and the average dog groomer makes £13,000, according to Simply Hired. Adding even a fraction of these incomes to your regular salary as a dog walker can substantially boost your income.
The tax for being self-employed is roughly 15.3 per cent as of 2011, but it may vary depending on how much money your business earns. Since the dog walker salaries from Simply Hired, PayScale and Salary Expert are presumably before taxes, dog walkers likely take home 84.7 per cent of the salaries given. This means, for example, that the national average salary for a dog walker isn't £27,950 but £23,673.