Is there a right or wrong vehicle to buy if you are a dog walker?
I bet every dog walker has asked this question when setting up their business… I certainly did and as a matter of fact, I must have viewed at least what I thought at the time were 10 suitable options. These included the VW Touran, VW Sharan, Peugeot Rifter, VW Caddy, Renault Kangoo, Peugeot Partner Tepee, Ford Connect . ..and believe you me, these were only a few of the ones I viewed and thoroughly researched!
From the list, it became quite apparent very quickly what I didn’t want was a van. Yes, there are some pros when it comes to vans. They are often cheaper to buy new. As a used option however vans purchased from a dealer attracts VAT, a car doesn’t. You don’t have a doggy smell in the cabin of the vehicle as most vans have full bulkheads. The lack of windows means more space for sign writing. Having no windows also means people can’t see in….however don’t forget, as dog walkers we should not be leaving clients dogs in vehicles unattended!
What I felt however as a pet owner for over 30 years, I would not want my precious pet hoisted into a metal tube with the door vibrating loudly as it shut. Vans tend to be exceptionally light and tinny and as a result they are very noisy when opening and closing doors and in addition they rattle a lot! I felt this had to be a frightening experience for any animal, never mind ones which have had a bit of a rough start in life and require additional tlc. After all at the start a dog walker is a total stranger to the dog!
Dog Walking Vehicle – My Ultimate Choice
From the opening few paragraphs of this blog you will be in no doubt what my personal preference was after my thorough research. Yes, cars won hands down for me. My eventual choice (much as I was desperate for something fancy with lots of bells and whistles, like the Volkswagen Sharan) ended up being the bob basic Citroen Berlingo. I was somewhat surprised by my choice as my previous vehicle was a Lexus RC Sport car. However as a dedicated dog walking vehicle the Berlingo has much to recommend it.
So why did I rate the Berlingo so high….. in a nutshell, its flexibility and the fact it did everything it said it did on the tin! It is exceptionally spacious, the back seats fold, split and can be removed altogether. It is cost effective to run in terms of insurance, tax, fuel and repairs. It has a lot of head space and as a result you can fit good sized dog cages in the back. Also importantly the vehicle doesn’t narrow towards the roof so you maximise the space when fitting flat sided cages. Also the tailgate lifts up so on wet days you do not get soaked loading and unloading dogs. Finally and most important of all, it is reliable…. how many taxi drivers do you see now driving around in a Citroen Berlingo…say no more!
To sum it up, I think it is fair to say, I am truly converted… I love my Woof Wagon and WOULD’NT change anything about it!
Are you a dog walker? If so why not leave a comment saying what dog walking vehicle you bought and why.