Amy Soens from Doggy Dash wrote a hilarious guest post a while back detailing her escapades as a dog walker – here is part 2 of her misadventures!
My day starts with the worst of intentions, having spent the first hour of my day (which starts at a respectable 6am, by the way!) lying in bed with the dogs across my legs, working on my laptop. Although after an hour, my work has digressed to Facebook and looking at wellies! My life has changed dramatically in the last year, from Christian Louboutin stilettos to wellies; a good robust pair of wellies are my new Prada!
This morning my first client is an excitable Dalmatian who we run with, as the owner is training it to be a running dog. Great for the marathon running owner, not so great for the slightly flabby 30 something dog walker! The owner is happy to accept the compromise of jogging with intermittent rest stops ‘for the dog, of course!’, so off we go; it’s school run time so the village is full of cars zipping about, which is typical as I manage to slip on a bit of black ice and end up in the middle of the street on my bum with the Dalmatian licking the sweat off my face…Point 1 to the dogs!
Time for Taz, my favourite Tasmanian devil; today, I notice that the client Macbook now seems to only have 3 corners instead of 4 and Taz must have a hatred of vowels, as he has eaten most of the vowel keys off the keyboard – Point 2 to the dogs.
Sneaking past the lonely neighbour, we make it out safe and sound. The caretaker greets with me a ‘morning darling’, which is odd since the rest of my colleagues all think he looks like a serial killer – another person to avoid there then!
Next, I meet my colleague Tim for a new client consultation; we are greeted at the door by the most excitable and beautiful bearded collie in the county! The client’s father advises us that the client is Agoraphobic and suffers from OCD and social anxiety, so will not feel comfortable in the same room as us for the initial meeting; he is training his dog to become his emotional support dog.
Now, I quite like these kinda ‘out of the normal scope’ type jobs, so I am more than happy to take on the client; until the client takes us through to his ‘artist’s studio’ to show us all his watercolour paintings – every single one of which is of Leonardo Dicaprio in every single one of his different film roles. Faced with a 5 foot painting of Leonardo out of ‘The Beach’, the client comments on Tim’s similarity to Leonardo; my colleague Tim gives me the look of a man on the edge – the look of panic, the look that says RUN, RUN FOR OUR LIVES!
Making our swift exit from the house of Leonardo, they ask us to come back the following afternoon for a trial walk, by which time the dog will be groomed and ready to go out. I quickly agree while Tim is already down the drive, sitting in my car with the doors locked!
Tim, Lisa and I have clients in the same area next, so we have a lovely walk together, debriefing from the house of dolls and publicly outing my colleague as a big old wimp! As the hail starts coming down and we all look rosy cheeked as it starts to sting our faces, we make a team decision to call the boss and request a Starbuck’s run, which she gracefully agrees to upon gentle threat of mutiny!
Finally, the sun decides to show its face, so I enjoy a lovely walk with my gun dogs around the local beauty spot; suddenly all four dogs disappear around a corner like rats up a drainpipe. Screams swiftly follow…. I race round the corner to find two ladies enjoying a lovely romantic picnic, with champagne and strawberries and generally a very beautiful selection of food – apparently their picnic comes complete with a free Retriever, a Labradoodle and two Labradors!
I use my ‘angry voice’ to call the dogs back, who all have some sort of pork pie or sponge cake hanging out of their mouths; I apologise profusely and ask if I can do anything to make up for their destroyed romantic picnic; they ask me to go away-fair enough! As I turn to walk away, I spy a ring box under the corner of the picnic blanket – well there’s an engagement story they won’t forget in a hurry- point 3 to the dogs!
Next I have the little ones, 4 Lhasa Apso’s and a Shih Tzu, and joy of joys, they all have chain leads. Now chain leads are brilliant for one thing: getting knotted up! So now I’m walking 5 small dogs on 1 massive knotted lead! In the car on the way home, the Shih Tzu manages to get free from the boot and decides to escape to the back seat, onto the baby seat and have a poo. Then, realising he has stood in his own poo, he cleans his paws on my jacket lying on the back seat – OK, so I’m gonna smell lovely for the rest of the day. Point 4 to the dogs. I get to his house where his owner finds him asleep in the kitchen and me in their back garden hosing myself down!
Lastly, I have two very clever standard poodles to walk; now I’m not sure if you have ever had the feeling that you are getting outwitted by two dogs, but it isn’t a pleasant feeling! Both dogs spend the hour playing their new favourite game…disappearing out of sight, and then appearing from behind suddenly and fast and knocking me off my feet, each dog taking a leg out each…Points 5, 6 & 7 to the dogs…and a rather bruised backside!!
Limping home, my husband is home before me today; I drag my wellies off my feet, take my waterproofs off, to be greeted with the compliment every girl wants to hear: ‘You look like you’ve lost a fight with a dog!’, to which I reply, ‘Actually I lost 7.’!
Doggy Dash is a professional dog walking and pet care service, that operates in Runcorn, Widnes, Warrington and Wirral. Despite the hilarious mishaps described in this post, Amy from Doggy Dash says “The dogs and owners make our days full of fun and happiness and endlessly entertaining – it’s not often someone can say that they love their job – but we do – every minute of it!”
*Names have been changed to protect the privacy of the clients!