When we went into Lockdown at the end of March I suspended our Dog of the Month competition as we wouldn't actually be doing a lot of walking for quite some time. Now we've all come through Lockdown and we've been back to work for a number of weeks I thought it was a good time to bring back the Dog of the Month competition.
So without further ado the winner for July 2020 is the lovely Skye.
We have been walking Skye since November of last year and as you can see she's a gorgeous greyhound aged about 7/8 years.
Skye has genuinely been fantastic since day one. Her owners were very lucky that she settled in as quickly as she did as not only was Skye new to us but she was a new dog for them too, in fact they'd only had her for a few days before we began to help out with her walks whilst they were at the day job.
Skye is arguably the most laid back dog I have ever met, she's happy in the company of any other dog, she's great with everyone she meets and nothing seems to bother her. I've probably her her out with every dog we currently walk and she's brilliant with all of them. She's always very excited to see us when we collect her and is a pleasure to walk as her lead work is first class.
Her owners have work commitments elsewhere so Skye is taking a break from us for a while but I hope to see her again when she returns as she's welcome back anytime.
When I started Coastal Dog Walkers back in 2015 I looked around to see how other Dog Walkers did it, not to copy anyone but to get an idea for best practices and in some cases to see what not to do. If I was to follow the How To Become a Dog Walker school of thought it very much looked to me at the time like I would have to buy a van and operate my business over quite a large area. This all meant I would be on the road a lot and it would mean customers dog's (I didn't even have any of these at the time) would be in the van for what i considered an unacceptable amount of time. Hmmm I thought, there has to be another way....
My solution was to build my business slowly by imposing a strict geographical 'zone' to work within. I'd say no to any potential new customers outside that zone. This was dificult beacuse I kept getting enquiries from just a mile or 2 outside my work area and although it was counter intuative to turn work away that's exactly what I did. Slowly I did get some customers within my operational area and I have more or less stuck to that ethos since then only expanding my area when I was able to take on some helpers after a couple of years.
I still see to this day new dog walkers who take on work anywhere they can get it and will travel miles out of their way chasing that next customer. They and their dogs must be forever on the road driving to be able to collect dogs for a group walk and that's fine for them but that's not the way I wanted to do things.
At this point in time, July 2020 we cover a small part of North Shields, all of Tynemouth, all of Cullercoats and a small part of Whitley Bay. It's not set in stone and we may expand again in the future but only if I have the staff to cover any new areas.
So the reason our dog walking area is small is this: We don't want your dogs to be stuck in a van when they could be getting walked! And 6 years in and I still haven't even got a van but that's a blog for another day!
Coastal Dog Walkers
Coastal Dog Walkers
Welcome to the occasional ramblings of a North Shields dog walker.