So in this post I will talk about the dog walking, cat sitting and puppy visit’s work I do. We live in such sparsely populated area a few villages a few towns and let me tell you we have far to many dog walkers in our area now, ‘my humble opinion’ if your reading this and want to make a quick buck don’t it will take you ages to get new dogs that are not part of your friend and family network, that being said about new dog walkers its not effected our pet care services at Little Happy Hounds, even with the new ones who have uncut everyone by charging slightly less, you get what you pay for in my mind.
I think the reason we have no seen this affect us at Little Happy Hounds is firstly I have very loyal caring client based.
Secondly I think of my business, my dogs, cats and their humans as one big extended family I will aways go that extra mile to look after and accommodate all my clients.
So how I am still getting new enquiries in the face of such new competition; with huge branded brightly coloured vans every corner I take, I like too think that its firstly word of mouth, secondly facebook Instagram and twitter were I demonstrate what we do, thirdly blogging. But who knows. its working whatever it is, thank you everyone.
So within this realm of pet care its not very well regulated, common sense needs to prevail, you wont catch me with my dogs off leads crossing the dam bridge in between the two cars park at Fernilee for example; something I have now seen two new dog walkers do, it’s a road, a quiet road but a road all the same.
You will not catch me walking down Eccles lane from Eccles pike on my mobile phone with two dog clients on leads and then fail to move out the way of traffic; again something I have seen lately I try very hard not to use my phone when I am with the dogs full stop; except for taking pictures at an appropriate time, again common sense needs to prevail.
If other new dog walkers don’t like me writing these things, then don’t do them were I can see them. End of the day when is see these things it really hurts my feelings as people have no idea what their dog walkers are doing with their pets, being a lovely person does not make you a great dog walker.
Lastly is it ethical?? There are some breeds I just wont walk and have been asked as they are so interbred they have to have nose jobs to help them breathe, nope , I don’t want that responsibility or that representation for Little Happy Hounds.
Also with what is ethical, walking a group of dogs all off lead except one nervous one, or aggressive, on a flexi lead. I do walk two sisters one of fleix again this is very much a 1-2-1 two sisters dog walk, don’t get me wrong I use a Flexi for my own dog when I am off work, however I would not use one with large group of dogs its inappropriate and at its worse dangerous, nor would I walk any dog with aggression or nervousness within my pack of happy socialised dogs, its not ethical if you do that your greedy trying to walk as many dogs as you can. we are not trainers or animal behaviourists we are Dog walkers and pet sitters.
I could go on but don’t want to come across as a meany, when all I ever have done want to do is provide safe comfortable group walks for my dogs, were dogs get on are happy to be out and can be trusted off leads when its safe to do so.
I offer Maturity, I am a married man, in my very late 30s, home owner dog owner I have lived a very full happy life as a result I am a teenage girl walking dogs living at home. I am very a incomer of the High Peak area my home will always be Newcastle upon Tyne in mind but we just love the High Peak and living in the National Peak District park boundary is now a dream come true. We moved to New Mills in 2005 Whaley Bridge 2014 and mostly recently have found a permanent home in Chinley our new house is within the boundary of the Peak District.
Branded uniforms, I see lots of new businesses on social media posts , creating emphasis on this that they have amazing shiny new branded uniforms, I am with dogs most days I don’t see clients other humans most days, so too were a branded uniform is not going to benefit anyone especially me, its not what I am about, my appearance goes out the window when I am knee deep in mud covered in dog hair, so to walk around in branded and neat uniform makes me want to burst out laughing. I wear whats comfortable when I am out with the dogs.
Also with being non uniform comes discretion when I am walking smaller groups I don’t want all of in sundry, knowing I am a dog walker, I am wanting to blend in when I can so wearing and uniform wont allow me to do that, plus visiting clients homes when your at work, on holiday for cat visits; wearing a uniform letting myself in and out your house at set times rocking up in a branded van its all a red flag for me; if anyone is watching your home you have had it…
So I am a one man show, with seven years experience running little happy hounds, prior to that I looked after friends cats and through dog ownership I have had a lot more experience than the seven years.
At Little Happy Hounds we have done and will do walk dogs of all breeds and sizes, however we specialise in the care and dog walking of smaller breeds, my own dog is Shih Tzu cross, I have walked Shih thus cavapoos, Chihuahuas Westies and all sorts of smaller doggies since we began life the clue being in the name of the business.
My puppy service is not just about keeping a puppy company while your at work, I will advice all new dog owners, help with bite inhibition, recommend vets, groomers, aides, trainers, help with recall, socialising and toilet breaking I have looked after a lot of puppies and hopefully helped a lot of my clients out along the way in in fact lots of our little happy hound crew were puppies first. Thats very special for me as I get very attached probably too attached and form a very close bond with my puppy visits come dog walking clients.
Dog nature walks, so when I can I avoid parks low level flat walks and fields, I take my dogs on adventures, sometimes longer than hour, I walk in small groups , I allow lots of time off leads, work on recall and obedience, and in general make sure my dogs have fun, exercise, play time, my walks are varied Eccles Pike and Goyt Valley being two of my favourites and the dogs too. A phrase I have blogged about since 2012 about my LHH walks is ‘ off the beaten track’ and it really is I try very hard to avoid people cattle sheep and walk the dogs quiet places however sometimes we do have to go busier places so my dogs need to have good recall.
Cat sitting. So when I am not out in the peaks hiking with the LHH woofs I am cat sitting. So this is visiting peoples homes when they are on holiday, its primarly cats but we do get a lot fo smaller pets, recently I looked after a heard of alpacas and chickens, this service is very personalised, so I have indoor cats outdoor cats cats that hug me cats who hide from me, elderly cats who need medication, so I offer a very caring, very experienced cat feeding service, I try and cater for everyones pets specific needs.
Trusted key holder, years of experience, offering a very personalised caring pet care services at all time, we cover Chinley, Furness Vale, Whaley Bridge, Buxworth and Chapel-en-le-Frith High Peak.
all the photos in this blog are from last few weeks, if you want to follow our dog and kitty cat adventures to the max find us on Facebook, Little Happy Hounds and Little Happy Cats or visit the main website http://www.littlehappyhounds.co.uk