Thanks to apps like Uber, Bolt and supermarket deliveries Brits are used to being able to access goods and services at the touch of a button.

As our lives keep getting busier we require goods and services on demand in order to keep up with our busy schedules and Sonny D’Avola, the founder of the GoWalkies app, believes that professional dog walking is no different.

GoWalkies is an on-demand dog walking service that connects dog walkers with dog owners within their local area.

GoWalkies app is like Uber for dogs

Dudley News: Sonny served two tours in Afghanistan and one in Iraq with the British Army. (GoWalkies)Sonny served two tours in Afghanistan and one in Iraq with the British Army. (GoWalkies)

This is something of a career change for the London-based 33-year old.

Sonny, who served two tours in Afghanistan and one in Iraq with the British Army before leaving the military in 2012 told us: “I saw that the dog walking model in the UK was outdated and unregulated, I set out to fix and disrupt the model, creating a free app to download for dog walkers and dog owners alike”.

GoWalkies is the canine equivalent to Uber but instead of searching for taxi drivers it seeks out dog walkers within close proximity. Users tap on the app, access the mapping system and tap and find profiles of the dog walkers near them.

The app is different to other apps on the market as it allows dog walkers to keep 100% of their quote, making it fairer for the dog walkers, whilst other apps take as much as 40% of the total cut. 

GoWalkies also verifies the walker's identity and insurance details unlike other apps on the market. 

Sonny said “As a UK based app we understand the dog owning culture in this country. We also have that all important geographical upper hand with boots on the ground and a deep rooted association with dogs as part of our daily lives.

We have had a great launch and have had much interest in the GoWalkies app, hitting thousands of downloads in the first month of going live.  The demand for such an app is clearly there and we aim to provide the best service for those that choose to walk dogs as a professional career choice”.

How does the GoWalkies app work?

Dudley News: GoWalkies is quick and easy to use from both the walkers and owners perspective. (GoWalkies)GoWalkies is quick and easy to use from both the walkers and owners perspective. (GoWalkies)

We are a nation of dog lovers - there are over three million dog owners in London alone, more per capita than anywhere else in the world. 

The innovative new app was designed to be quick and easy to use from both the walkers and owners perspective.  Owners can choose any walkers they like and are sorted by distance, meaning you can book a walker within walking distance, enabling what Sonny calls on demand dog walks that can be booked in as little as five minutes.

This is especially helpful to those who may have an emergency and therefore require a dog walker to come to them immediately. Once the walker collects your dog you can track the walk in real time on your mobile within the GoWalkies app. 

The UK dog walking services is a huge market and GoWalkies aim to disrupt the current model making dog walking safer and fairer for all.

Since Covid, many individuals have been reassessing their career choices and GoWalkies have noticed that many people who have worked in an office previously are now opting into dog walking.

Reassurance is the key for dog owners who want to know their pet is in the safest hands if someone else is going to walk them. The rise in dog thefts in the past couple of years has also been a major worry for owners.

Reassurance is the crucial aspect, said Sonny. “I am a dog owner myself and I wouldn’t hand Delta over to any Tom, Dick or Harry. I need to know the dog walker is insured and if the walker has insurance, we verify their documents and this is shown clearly on their profile.

“Our app authenticates and ranks the professional dog walkers and that is what makes our business stand out from the crowd.

“People who want to join our app have to upload their insurance and we have very tight procedures on identity because this really is a trust-based business.

“We say it is exactly like a babysitting service. Your dog is part of your family. It is the same as far as we are concerned. Dog owners must have peace of mind.”

Bio-recognition technology ensures identity authentication so dog owners can be assured that the person who is coming to pick up your dog is the person on GoWalkies’ records.

Sonny added: “If anything untoward happens, we will work with the police in favour of the dog owner if there are any issues.” As any dog owner knows, relationships with dogs are special “They help us with our emotional and physical wellbeing.”

“They are members of the family.This is a skilled profession and is not for everyone. It is not something anyone can do.”

“We want professional walkers to download the app but equally, if you are a switched-on, good person with integrity and you have good experience with dogs we would be delighted for you to download the app today and amplify your client base.”

GoWalkies has linked up with Help for Heroes to give the military charity ten per cent of its annual fee income, which will go towards future plans in helping veterans with PTSD, to provide them with training and get back into work through professional dog walking.