30 Shocking Dog Walking Statistics & Facts!

Dog Data


Meg Marrs

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Dog walks are a key part of any happy, well-adjusted pup’s day. Whether you’re hoofing it around the neighborhood yourself, or are hiring a seasoned professional, many of us four-legged caretakers are no strangers to walks.

But when it comes to these fascinating dog walking statistics and facts, you may see a surprise! Check them out and let us know what your favorite (or most shocking) stat was!

Professional Dog Walker Demographic

Let’s dive into the demographics of dog walkers. Whose behind the leash, anyway?

There are over 16,224 dog walkers currently employed in the United States.

Source: Zippia.com

It’s pretty amazing that there are over 16,000 folks out there who get to spend their day walking dogs! This shows us that there’s a real demand for dog walkers in the U.S., probably because of the number of dogs that need walking and how busy their human companions are. There could be even more room for people who want to turn their love for dogs into a fun and flexible job!

70.8% of all dog walkers are women, while 29.2% are men.

Source: Zippia.com

Did you know that over 70% of dog walkers are women? That’s quite a balance! Maybe it’s because society often links pet care and nurturing roles with women.

But guys, don’t be shy, you could be the next dog whisperer. There might just be a market out there for male dog walkers that hasn’t been fully tapped into yet.

The average age of an employed dog walker is 31 years old.

Source: Zippia.com

The average dog walker is 31 years old. This might be because the job is pretty flexible, so it’s a great fit for people who might be changing careers or who need to juggle other commitments. It really goes to show that dog walking can be a fun, rewarding job at any stage of life!

When you break down the ages:

  • 45% of dog walkers are between 20-30 years old.
  • 25% are 30-40 and 23% are 40 and older.

Dog walker employment hit an all-time high in 2019, with a 5.4% unemployment rate.

Source: Zippia.com

This is likely due to people walking their dog during the pandemic (and being happy to do so, to get out of the house). Generally, unemployment for dog walkers floats between 7-9%.

The most common ethnicity of dog walkers is White (67.7%), followed by Hispanic or Latino (18.4%), Unknown (6.4%), and Black or African American (4.3%).

Source: Zippia.com

Interesting, right? The majority of dog walkers are White, but there’s representation from other ethnicities too. This could be an indication that dog walking is a profession that’s open to anyone, but it’s also a reminder that we should encourage more diversity in every field. So, let’s hear it for more dogs walked by more people from all walks of life!

The good news is that other ethnicities have increased their dog walking ranks over time. In 2010, only 14.8% were latino, and 1.5% Asian. In 2021, those numbers increased to 18.4% and 2.65%, respectively.

Black dog walkers have increased over the past decade, but not by as much – they represented 4.05% of dog walkers in 2010, and have only grown to 4.3% in 2021.

11% of all dog walkers are LGBT.

Source: Zippia.com

In the world of dog walking, 11% of all the walkers identify as LGBT, which is a bit higher than the general population. Maybe it’s because the dog walking community is super inclusive and welcoming.

This really shows us that dog walking is about more than just walking dogs; it’s about creating a diverse and inclusive community that reflects the world around us. Let’s keep making the dog walking world a place for everyone!

Dog Walker Pay & Salary

How much do dog walkers get paid, anyway? Well, it depends on where you live.

Dog walkers earn the most in Oregon, where the average dog walker salary is $37,575.

Source: Zippia.com

Talk about a doggone gold rush in Oregon! It seems like folks over there are practically throwing money at people to take their dogs for a spin around the block. It might be that people in Oregon are willing to invest more in the health and wellbeing of their pets, appreciating the value of regular, professional dog walks.

the average dog walker enjoys staying at their job for Less than 1 year for a percentage of 29%.

Source: Zippia.com

26% stay for 1-2 years, and 13% stay for 2-3 years. However, tenure bounces back up for the 5-7 year crowd, who make up 19% of dog walkers. Only 6% stay longer than 8 years.

Dog walkers are most in-demand in Chicago, IL and New York City.

Source: Zippia.com

Calling all dog walkers to the Windy City! For some reason, Chicago is where your services are most needed. Maybe it’s because the city is full of busy people or just dogs (it doesn’t hurt that Chicago also has a ton of great dog parks)! 

Owner Dog Walking & Walking Length

How long is the average walk? And how many folks really do walk their dogs? Let’s find out!

Around 41% of dog owners do not regularly walk their dogs.

Source: Psychology Today

This really does make you pause, doesn’t it? Nearly half of the pup parents out there aren’t regularly walking their fur babies. Considering all the benefits of dog walking – both for the pet and the owner – this stat might be a wake-up call for some. Regular walks are essential for a dog’s physical and mental health, and they’re a great way for owners to get some exercise too!

Pet dogs are walked an average of 9 times a week, with each walk lasting around 34 minutes and covering nearly two miles.

Source: Psychology Today

Talk about dedicated dog owners! That’s about five hours a week or 11 days a year spent strolling with their furry friends. In a year, these dedicated walkers are covering roughly 870 miles – about the same distance from New York City to Atlanta!

This goes to show just how much time and energy people are willing to invest in the wellbeing of their pets.

Larger dogs are more likely to be walked, and dog owners with a stronger attachment to their dogs are more likely to take them for walks.

Source: Psychology Today

It makes sense that larger dogs get walked more since they often need more exercise. The fact that a stronger attachment to a dog correlates with more frequent walks shows that dog walking isn’t just about physical exercise; it’s also a bonding activity.

These walks provide an opportunity for owners to spend quality time with their pets and strengthen their bond.

78% of dog owners believe that their dog should be walked twice a day, but 57% admit to skipping walks each week.

Source: Psychology Today

Even the best intentions can run up against reality. Despite the majority of owners believing in the importance of regular walks, over half end up skipping walks due to various reasons like bad weather, work pressure, or simply feeling too tired.

Dog ownership is a commitment, but it’s clear that sometimes, life can get in the way of ideal pet care practices.

Monday is the day a dog’s walk is most likely to be skipped.

Source: Psychology Today

Ah, even our pups can’t escape the Monday blues! This could be because people are adjusting to getting back into their work week and maybe feeling a little extra tired or stressed. It might be a good idea to schedule shorter, more manageable walks for Mondays, so they’re less likely to be skipped.

Small dogs, older dogs, and overweight dogs are walked less often.

Source: Psychology Today

It’s no surprise that small dog owners are more likely to forget about walks, but even mini breeds deserve outdoor walks to sniff and explore their neighborhood – they don’t have to be long though! Usually 20 minutes is plenty of walking time for a little guy.

The same goes for senior dogs– it’s pretty understandable that owners think their grey-haired buddies don’t need walks anymore, but walks aren’t just about physical exercise for dogs. The mental benefits and stimulation provided by walks are just as important. And even older dogs deserve a slow little walk around the block to get out and about. 

And naturally, it’s heartbreaking that overweight dogs are walked so little, as they are the ones who need the exercise provided by walking most of all!

During the average walk, dogs interact with other dogs around 4 times.

Source: Psychology Today

Walks aren’t just about physical exercise; they’re also an important social activity for both dogs and their owners. During the average walk, dogs interact with other dogs around four times. And, naturally, dog owners encounter other pet parents about the same number of times.

Regular walks can help dogs socialize and behave better with other dogs, while also providing owners with opportunities to connect with their community.

Dog owners use an average of 936 poop bags each year while walking their pets.

Source: Psychology Today

That’s a lot of bags! This stat is a friendly reminder of the less glamorous side of pet ownership. Remember, always pick up after your pet to keep your neighborhood clean and maintain a good relationship with your neighbors and community.

Nearly 60% of people who walk their dogs take their dog on two or more walks each day.

Source: Ham 2006

According to one peer-reviews 2006 study, among individuals in the study who walked their dogs, an estimated 58.9% engaged in two or more walks in a single day.

90% of people who walk their dogs spend more than 10 minutes on their walks.

Source: Ham 2006

It’s awesome to har that 90% of people who choose to walk their dogs are out there strolling with their pups for longer than 10 minutes.

It makes you wonder if having a backyard is really the pet-owning necessity many people assume it is. Many backyard owners think just hanging in the backyard is enough for their dog (it’s usually not). Maybe the apartment-dwellers who are forced to take their dog out to tinkle anyway decide to just keep on movin’ and go for a full walk. Lucky pups!

Of those who walk their dogs, only 27% walk their dog at least 150 minutes per week.

Source: Reeves 2011

So, here’s an interesting tidbit: even though most people are down for a decent-length walk, only about a quarter are hitting the 150-minute mark per week. What gives — do dogs need to start sending calendar invites for walkies? Let’s get those numbers up, people! Your dog’s wagging tail will thank you.

Dogs 1 year old or younger are more likely to be walked than older dogs.

Source: Ham 2006

Looks like puppy power takes the win! The younger the pupper, the more likely they are to be parading around the neighborhood. But let’s not forget our elder statesdogs, okay? Sure, they may not zoom around like a furry torpedo anymore, but they still need to stretch those old bones and sniff out the latest neighborhood gossip.

Those who walk their dogs generally walk an hour longer per week than those who don’t walk their dogs.

Source: Reeves 2011

Dog owners who walk their dogs generally walk about an hour longer per week than people who own dogs but did not walk them. So, owning a dog can add to your physical activity — but only if you actually get outside with your pup!

Dog owners are 34% more likely to fit in 150 minutes of walking in a week compared to non-dog owners.

Source: Reeves 2011

It’s pretty awesome how dog ownership can motivate people to be more physically active and meet the recommended guidelines for moderate-intensity exercise. 
In a 2011 study, dog owners were found to be 34% more likely to fit in 150 minutes of walking (the federal benchmark on physical activity) in a week compared to non-dog owners.

Walking is a simple and effective way to improve cardiovascular health, prevent obesity, and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. Dog owners may also enjoy the benefits of walking with their dogs, such as bonding, socializing, and exploring new places.

Dog owners walked 22 more minutes per day compared to non-owners on average.

Source: Reeves 2011

Well, who needs a treadmill when you’ve got a furry friend at home? Dog owners are out there putting in an extra 22 minutes of legwork daily compared to those sans pooch. That’s like, half an episode of your favorite sitcom.

Instead of chilling on the couch, they’re out strutting their stuff on the sidewalks.

It’s a two-for-one deal, really – you’re keeping Fido fit while getting some cardio yourself. Owning a dog? More like owning your fitness game! Maybe we should start marketing dogs as the next big fitness trend, eh? Move over, Peloton, here comes Poodle-ton!

Dog walking can foster a sense of community and social interaction, as dog walkers are more likely to meet new people, make friends, and help neighbors than non-dog walkers. 

Source: Heathline

Dog walking has been shown to have the potential to enhance social and emotional well-being for both dogs and owners.

Dogs are natural ice-breakers that can facilitate conversations and connections with other people! Plys, dog walkers may also feel more engaged and involved in their neighborhoods and communities, as they interact with other dog walkers, pet owners, and local residents.

Dog walking can provide significant health benefits for both dogs and owners, such as reducing obesity, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, and depression.

Source: Harvard Medical School

Dog walking can prevent or manage many chronic diseases and conditions that affect both dogs and owners, improving their quality and quantity of life.

Walking can help maintain a healthy weight and body composition for both dogs and owners by burning calories and increasing metabolism. It can also help regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels for both dogs and owners by improving insulin sensitivity and cardiovascular function.

Dog Walking Industry Growth & Development

Let’s dig into the hot statistics around the dog walking industry and how it’s been developing over the last 5-10 years!

The dog-walking industry reached $979.2 million in 2022.

Source: IBIS

Woof! That’s a lot of kibble! The dog-walking industry fetched a cool $979.2 million in 2022, folks. It’s like dog walking is the new Fortune 500 company. Who knew the key to a billion-dollar industry was as simple as “sit”, “stay”, and “heel”? With that kind of dough, it’s clear that we’re not just walking dogs here, we’re walking bundles of joy worth their weight in gold.

So, dog walkers, next time someone underestimates your job, just tell ’em you’re a key player in a near billion-dollar industry. Talk about the power of poop scooping!

The dog walking services industry in the US is projected to reach a revenue of $1.3 billion by the end of 2023.

Source: IBIS

The size and growth of the dog walking services industry in the US has been increasing steadily over the past five years and is projected to continue growing. 

The industry has benefited from the rising pet ownership rates, disposable income levels, urbanization trends, and consumer demand for premium and personalized pet care services.

The dog walking services industry in the US employs an average of 63,412 people in 2023 with 34,292 dog walking businesses.

Source: IBIS

No need to roll over and play dead in the job market – the dog walking industry in the US is on a hiring spree! We’re not just talking a small kennel here; we’re talking a big ol’ pack of 63,412 people working in 34,292 dog walking businesses across the nation in 2023. Looks like “must love dogs” is becoming quite the resume booster!

Dog walking services revenue has been increasing at a CAGR of 1.2% over the past five years.

Source: IBIS

Dog walking services revenue has featured a steady compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 1.2% over the last five years. Not exactly a greyhound pace, but more of a “slow and steady wins the race” kind of industry, it seems. And that steady and reliable growth is expected to continue!

The dog walking industry has a low barrier to entry and a high turnover rate, as many workers are part-time, seasonal, or independent contractors. Dog walkers also have a low wage level compared to other pet care industries, as most workers do not require formal education or certification. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t make big bucks walking dogs! You can earn higher wages by offering specialized or premium services, such as training, grooming, or pet sitting, in addition to the usual walk-around-the-block affair.

FAQ About Dog Walking Facts & Statistics

What is the average salary of a dog walker in the United States?

That can depend a lot on the region. The average pay for dog walkers is around $30,893, or $14.85 per hour. However, one report in Oregon showed that dog walkers there earn an average of $37,575. Not a bad gig, considering that Portland has tons of dog parks!

How long do most people typically walk their dogs?

Most folks seem to walk their dogs between 10-20 minutes. According to various research pieces, of those who walk their dogs, only 27% walk their dog at least 150 minutes per week. And, 90% of people who walk their dogs spend more than 10 minutes on their walks.

How many people actually walk their dogs?

Only around 60% of dog owners actually walk their dogs on a regular basis. That’s not great considering that the mental enrichment and physical exercise dogs get during walks is pretty essential for their happiness and wellbeing!

Do dog owners walk more than non-dog owners?

Absolutely! In fact, it’s estimated that dog owners walk an average of 22 minutes more per day than those without a four-legged friend. Who needs a gym membership when you’ve got a dog, right?

How much is the dog walking industry worth?

Fetch the calculator! The dog walking industry reached a staggering $979.2 million in 2022. It’s projected to hit a whopping $1.3 billion in revenue by the end of 2023. That’s a whole lot of walks around the block!

How many people work in the dog walking industry?

It’s estimated that the dog walking industry employs an average of 63,412 people across 34,292 businesses in the U.S in 2023.

You do give your dog walker awesome gifts from time to time, right?


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Written by

Meg Marrs

Meg Marrs is the Founder and Director of Marketing at K9 of Mine. She is a lifelong canine enthusiast and adores dogs of all shapes and sizes! She loves iced coffee, hammocks, and puppy-cuddling!

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