What to Look for In a Rooftop Dog Walk

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What to Look for In a Rooftop Dog Walk

Staff Writer · Dec 1, 2010

It may not be the first thing that every dog walk professional thinks about, but in the event that you are called upon to take care of your client’s dog on top of a building, there are a few things you might want to look out for. It’s not inconceivable that clients in a very urban environment might ask pros to walk their dog in nearby access areas, rather than hauling them to area dog parks, which can get a lot more expensive. In any case, as a professional dog walker, it helps to be prepared for every eventuality.

Accommodations for “Rooftop Dogs”

When walking a dog in an unusual area such as the roof of a building, it’s a good idea to look for available resources to help clean up after the animal. Cleanup is almost always a part of professional dog walking, and a very important aspect of the business. Keeping bags with you at all times helps out a lot. Dog walkers might also want to look for amenities like water hoses or turf surfaces on a rooftop area to better accommodate a walk.

It’s also a good idea to figure out where available trash cans are on the roof, since it can be tricky to go back into the building to dispose of filled bags. If some of these facilities don’t exist, the walker can talk to the client about covering them when rooftop walking presents a more affordable opportunity.

Looking out for Safety

In general, if you’re going to bring one of your client’s pets up onto the roof of their building, you want to look at how environmental factors might cause potential problems for regular dog walking. One essential issue is the security of the area: roof areas with tall, sturdy barriers to the edges of the building are a must. You’ll also want to walk the dog in areas that have access to natural sunlight, and are free of harmful chemicals or unsafe mechanical installations, like some kinds of ventilation fans.

Available Space

In general, the more space a dog has, the better. Smaller dogs can be okay with a more limited space for a walk, and older dogs with less mobility might not need a whole lot of room to romp. However, be cautious about using a small, enclosed space for a large, healthy dog that has a lot of excess energy.

A professional should sit down with the client at the outset and plan an acceptable walk space for the pet, even if that means incurring a bit more cost in the regular walk process. It’s an unusual situation for a client to have no other options besides a rooftop walk, but where housing is measured by the floor and not the city block, the dog walking service might have to help a client make some tough decisions about what’s best for their pet.

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