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Rover Dog Walking Review: Is It The Best Side Gig?

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Do you love dogs? 

Does hanging out with a few new dogs a day sound like fun?

Would you probably dog walk for free but getting paid sounds even better?

If your answer is “yes,” Rover should be your new side gig.

What is Rover?

Rover is an app (and website) that connects dog owners with potential dog walkers and sitters. It's that simple!

If you have a dog, it's a great and safe way to find someone to help you care for you pet but if you're like me, and looking for a great new way to make money, you can offer your services as a dog sitter and/or walker and make some extra cash by caring for pups and exercising. That's a win-win for me!

I first starting dog walking with Rover a few months ago after returning back to the US after living in Vietnam for 3 years. My husband and I were pretty busy working on our van build but when I heard about Rover, I knew I needed to sign up. And let me go ahead and tell you, I am so happy I did- I’m only disappointed that I didn’t sign up as soon as I could!

One of my most playful dog sits!

Requirements for working with Rover:

  • Complete your profile on their website or app
  • Ask friends, family, or coworkers to provide testimonials for your profile
  • Ability to pass a background check
  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Pass a “dog safety” test
  • Be located in the US, Canada, UK, or other European countries

*Rover was a bit vague about which European countries exactly they work in so I suggest Googling Rover + your country to see if you’re eligible.

The profile isn’t too complicated to fill out. All you’ll need is a few pictures of you, ideally interacting with dogs or other animals, and a quick write-up about why you’ll be a great dog walker or sitter. 

For the testimonials, I’ve never worked with animals before on a professional level, but have always grown up around them and have dog sat for friends and family before so I asked them to write short reviews for me to be published on my profile. You just need their email and Rover will send them an easy template to you. This step is key to your profile looking complete and legitimate in the eyes of potential clients.

After this, you’ll need to wait a few days for your background check to go through and Rover to approve your profile. This only took 2 days of waiting. Once I was published, got my first booking only 1 day after completing my profile so it was quick to start earning with them, too!

I get paid with them via PayPal but they might have other options if you don’t have a PayPal account. Otherwise, creating one is quick and easy. Rover takes care of the fees so you’ll receive the amount that shows up on your Rover dashboard. 

Now that you know how quick and easy it is to sign up for Rover, here are 5 reasons why it’s the best side gig to have for all dog lovers

1. You don’t just have to dog walk

Meet Mya, one of my usual drop-in visits

Rover offers the following services:

  • Dog Walking
  • Drop-In Visits
  • Overnight Stays (at your house or their house)
  • Doggy daycare

Rover isn’t just for dog walking, although that might be the most popular service they offer. It’s all for drop-ins, meaning you pop into someone’s house and visit with their pet. This usually includes taking them outside to go to the bathroom, feeding them, and playing with them a bit in their home.

You can also opt to allow dogs over to your home for the day with “doggy daycare.” This is a popular service for people who work long hours and prefer their dogs to be around other people or other animals instead of alone at home all day.

The other service you could offer are overnight stays. I don’t have any experience with this as I was staying at my parent’s home while working with Rover. We already had a few dogs in the house so I didn’t want to bring another one in. I opted not to stay the night at anyone else’s home since I have a dog of my own to care for. This would be a great way to make even more cash while you sleep though!

When you create your profile, you decide which services you would like to offer. You’re able to update your settings at any time. 

2. You set your own rate

A rainy walk with this goof ball

Rover is great about suggesting prices for you if you don’t know how much you’d like to charge. You have the option to go higher or lower though. 

I decided to stay with what they recommended as a new sitter and decided I would up my prices after I built a good reputation on the app. 

You'll be paid via PayPal but perhaps their are other options as well. As a perk, you can request to get paid out at any time. You don't need to wait until the end of the month for your payment, just log into the app and request your payment whenever you want it.

Please note that Rover will take a cut of your pay so you will not receive 100% of your rate.

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3. You can deny any requests that you receive

Although, denying these cute faces can be tough!

When you create your profile, you’ll also set your calendar with your available working days and times. Even if you set yourself “available” for any given day or time, you’re still given the freedom to accept or deny any requests that you receive.

I enjoyed having this sort of freedom.

When I teach English online, if you open a time slot, you’re immediately booked, but with this you can still choose if you want it or not based on the time they request, how far the dog is from you, and if you get a good feeling from the owner. You’re never forced into anything you’re not comfortable with.

That being said, I never had a situation I didn’t feel comfortable being in. All the owners and dogs I’ve worked with have been wonderful. But, it’s always a good idea to trust your gut!

4. The bookings are flexible

This little puppy melted my heart from day 1

In my experience, Rover is a really flexible app. The owners also seem to be flexible about the exact time you care for their pets, so long as it is done around the time requested.

I really stressed my first few walks thinking I had to start my timer at the exact moment I was scheduled for. This isn’t always realistic when you add in traffic. 

I soon realized that Rover was lenient about what time you started your walk or drop-in so long as you and the owner were happy. 

I typically let people know when they requested my service if I would be there a few minutes late or preferred to come sooner in the day. I didn’t have any owners that had any problem with this but all of them appreciated the honesty with my schedule.

5. You get paid to play with dogs

Meet my dog, Bandido!

This is an obvious point, but in case you didn’t think too much about it, by working with Rover you get paid to walk and play with dogs. 

For a dog lover like me, this has been a dream come true. It’s a really great side gig to get me away from the computer during the day and gives me exercise along with loads of joy.

I was lucky enough to have a wide variety of dogs to keep me entertained. From drop-in visits a few times a week with a 3-month old Labradoodle to long walks with Huskies, German Shepherds, and Poodles, I’d squeeze in a few different pups a day. 

I’d highly recommend trying out Rover as your next side gig!

If you enjoyed this article, please use this link to sign up with Rover. It’s the same sign-up process for you but gives me a bonus for any successful referrals. Bonuses or not, Rover is fantastic!

The links used in this article are affiliate links, meaning if you make a purchase from one of the links, I make a small commission at no extra cost to you. Read our disclaimer & privacy policy here.

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