Photo Credit: Jaromir Chalabala / EyeEm / Getty Images

In a perfect world, you would be available to meet all of your dog’s needs. In reality, sometimes it takes a village to care for your fur baby. If you find yourself needing to outsource dog care, don’t worry; there are plenty of professional pet lovers out there who can help Fido thrive even when you’re busy busy busy. Among dog owners, two dog-walking apps seem to reign supreme: Wag! and Rover. We’re going to break down the differences between these dog-walking apps so you can make an informed decision about which app to use when you need a dog walker.

Wag! for Dog Owners

Wag! is considered the Uber of dog-walking apps. Before you can see dog walkers, however, you must create an account, including detailed information about your pup’s preferences, behavior, medications, and allergies. You will then be offered a free lockbox, which helps guarantee that your house key will never get lost by a dog walker again, and qualifies you for last-minute walks.

Then it’s off to the races…or rather, to pick a dog walker. You’ll be shown your nearby dog walker options. Depending on where you live, there will be too many to count, just a few, or somewhere in between. You’ll be able to see the dog walker’s rating, how many walks they’ve completed, whether they’ve passed a background check, and if they’re insured. Wag! offers scheduled walks (including one-time or recurring) as well as ASAP walks for those unforeseen emergencies (but you need to have a lockbox for ASAP walks).

This is where things get a little dicey with Wag! While it seems like you get to choose your walker on the app, Wag! actually auctions off your walk. So don’t get too attached to whomever you select on the app; you might get someone else entirely.

Finally, Wag! sets the price of the walk, not the walker, and we have to warn you: it’s on the higher end of the dog-walking fee scale.

But after jumping through all those hoops, your dog gets a walk, and you get a GPS map of your dog’s outing and a “report card” on all pee and poop activity. Don’t forget to rate your dog walker (and indicate if you want to prioritize this walker next time) and tip them, too!

Rover for Dog Owners

One of the big advantages of Rover is that you don’t need an account to browse dog walker profiles. If you’re unsure how you’d feel about someone else walking your precious fur baby, go ahead and visit the site, enter basic info about your dog-walking needs, and scroll through the dog walkers available in your area.

Dog walker profiles include a bio, photos, reviews, and the number of repeat customers each dog walker has, in addition to scheduling and fee information. Once you find someone you think you (and more importantly, your dog) will click with, create an account. Then click “contact” on your dog walker-to-be’s profile page and get the conversation going. Rover recommends that dog owners schedule a Meet & Greet to ensure the dog walker is a good match for your fur baby. Once that’s successfully completed, select “Book It Now” from your Rover conversation. The dog walker accepts, and your walk is scheduled. You can request that your dog walker send you text and photo updates during the walk.

While the initial getting-to-know-you period might take a little more time than Wag!, Rover definitely offers a more personalized experience.

Which Dog-Walking App Has the Upper Paw?

Dog owners seem to prefer Rover because they have the ability to really get to know their dog walker before handing over that leash. Dog owners who swear by Rover insist that the personal connection and open lines of communication make them feel more confident in using Rover for their dog-walking needs. While the free lockbox and ASAP walk option on Wag! are nice perks of the app, ultimately, dog owners just want to feel comfortable with the person spending that special time with their fur babies.

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