Yes, you require a license to start a dog walking business. Most cities have a written ordinance or city code that defines the types of dog owners that can operate dog walking businesses. Most importantly, you’ll need a dog-walker license to be able to own, walk or own a pet dog. Many localities also require a dog-walking license for the owner of any cats or other pets. Read the ordinances carefully! There are numerous city regulations pertaining to keeping dogs on public property, which may prohibit dog walking businesses. Check the city’s website (http://www.doe.ca.us/CityServices/Animals/Housing/Pets/Dog%20Walk%20Regulations) to find out if your municipality has a specific ordinance against dog walking businesses. You may also need to purchase a city license for any other pets you are holding on public property. Dogs must be supervised when they are on public property and must stay on lead while walking in areas where they may frighten horses and other animals.
Do I have to get a permit to start a dog walking business?
No, dog owners are allowed to own and walk dogs on private property in many cities throughout the state. In other cities, however, a dog owner is not allowed to own or walk a dog on a sidewalk even if they have a dog permit for that specific sidewalk. In some cases, it would be possible to have a dog on a sidewalk that was not on a public sidewalk or crosswalk. However, this usually requires that you have a special permit and meet certain requirements to do so. Also, in some cases, a dog may only be on public property if the owner has a “no leash” sign in the area. In most municipalities, businesses are required to obtain a permit to operate a dog walking business when dog owners walk dogs and do not have a dog permit. Visit your city’s website for more information.
What should I do if my city or town has a dog walking ordinance that prohibits me from doing dog walking on public property?
In most cases, the ordinance that bans your dog walking business is not applicable to you. Please contact the city or town’s public works department (e.g., Department of Public Works) to find out which ordinance is in effect in your municipality. Sometimes the city or town ordinance will not only prevent you from operating a dog walking business but also prohibit it when the owner (owner’s representative) is out of town. You must contact the city or