I started The Balmain Walks n’ Wags after working for years in main stream advertising for companies such as M&C Saatchi, George Patterson Y&R and Singleton Ogilvy. Working long hours in a fast paced and high stress environment I decided that I needed to pursue a new career that I got enjoyment and value out of, along with heath and well-being.
As someone who has always had a love and fascination of dogs and their behavior, I registered as a volunteer at Charity organization Monika’s Doggie Rescue in July 2009. When I get out to the Northern Beaches shelter I volunteer & work alongside animal professionals, kennel hands and other volunteers assisting with the care and maintenance of hundreds of dogs of all different sizes, breeds and temperaments and who have not had the best start to life having been rescued from death row at pounds around Sydney.
When starting out with Walks n’ Wags I saw what I think is a niche in the dog walking business, and that is a Dog Walker that actually walks the dogs.
What do I mean by that? Well living in Balmain and being a dog owner myself I noticed that Dog Walkers were in abundance however I also noticed that many Dog Walkers tend to just do the basic “toilet break” with as many as 7 or 8 dogs at a time. Often this means that all dogs are picked up from their homes in a car or van and brought to the park in an off leash area and let free to have a sniff and toilet. This may sound fine at first, but after thinking about it, if I were to hire a Dog Walker to take my precious fur children out I would expect them to be well stimulated, exercised and pampered.
So the service that I provide is simple but I feel effective and personalised with the well-being of each pooch considered, the bond and trust that I have with them is of most importance. All dogs are walked straight from their door in and around the area, depending on temperament and their needs and requests by owners the pups are given a portion of their walk time to off leash supervised play dates in small groups of other dogs matched based on energy level and personality. All the things that you would expect like filling up fresh water, towel dry after the rain, treats, ball throwing, stick throwing, frisbees throwing, bay swims, cuddles, belly rubs, back scratches are of course included.
I have been very lucky starting this business with such a great response and support from the Balmain community. Starting out back in late 2009 I never could have predicted how lucky I’ve been obtaining such a well-balanced group of clients (both canine & human parents). In early 2011 I had to put a freeze on taking on new clients as I am now completely booked and can only offer new enquiries a spot on my waiting list. Early 2012 I opened and launched new pet photography business Padfoot Whiskers & Wings www.padfootwhiskersandwings.com.