My brief life as a professional dog walker

When I first moved to Seattle, I decided to take a day to explore the city. I figured it was a good way to get a feel for the place. I strolled from my apartment to downtown to see the sights.

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Seattle seemed pretty alright! Lots of coffee shops, fancy apartment complexes, and–

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–on the corner of Olive and 9th, the greatest sight of all.

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A doggy in the window! I love dogs. I never had one growing up, so I’ve always been extra fond of the fluffy buddies.

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What is this magical place I had happened upon?! There were dogs. A room full of dogs. Multiple rooms full of dogs!

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It was a doggy daycare. A DOGGY DAYCARE! Several rooms just full of adorable, fluffy, beautiful dogs, playing and napping and eating and MY GOD, JUST BEING SO FREAKING CUTE.

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It was puppy heaven, except for one thing: a pane of glass between me and those dogs.

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There were people working in this doggy daycare, hanging out in the dog rooms. Their job was to be surrounded by dogs! They could pet the dogs all they wanted! And get paid for it!

I was jealous.

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I whipped out my phone.

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And believe it or not, I found my answer… on Craigslist.

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That’s right: Craigslist is where I found my big break. I immediately submitted an application and sent in my most polished, up-to-date resume.

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I even wrote a cover letter. A COVER LETTER. TO WALK DOGS.

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My effort paid off! I got an interview.

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After two weeks of training and a background check, I was living my dream. Walking and playing with dogs. Every day! And getting paid for it!

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Well, OK. There’s more to the job than that.

Every dog has their own personality. You have to learn how to handle each one.

One dog, for example, liked to attack other dogs.

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Another dog liked to attack skateboards.

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One dog liked pulling on her leash. Really hard.

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I had one dog who was especially strong-willed. Unlike most dogs, this one hated going outside. Especially if it was chilly. Or raining. And in Seattle, it’s like that 9 out of 12 months of the year.

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Most dogs come running to the door to greet you. This dog, I had to drag out of bed.

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There was only one time that this dog greeted me happily when I came in.

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Nope. Turns out the dog had pooed in the apartment. And boy, was she happy about it.

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Until I took her on her walk anyway.

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Man, I loved that dog so much.

That’s not sarcasm. I loved ALL my dogs. I loved, loved, LOVED my job. I mean, imagine seeing these guys every day!

I absolutely love and adore all dogs. I thought this job would desensitize me to dogs and help me STOP gushing all over them. Nope. It made it worse.

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I showed off my clients every chance I got.

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Dog walking is, really, my dream job. I could walk dogs for the rest of my life and be totally fine with it. Unfortunately, though, it’s not something you can make a career out of.

Computer science, on the other hand, is something that can turn into a full-time job. And I needed to focus on school.

I had to prioritize.

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So, after weeks of agonizing, I made my decision. I met up with my boss. My boss is a great guy, and was very understanding.

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Ok, ok. School is important. Building my career is important. BUT I WAS STILL REALLY DEVASTATED OVER LOSING MY BABIES.

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For WEEKS I had withdrawal. Is that even possible? Withdrawal from your daily dose of happy, fluffy, unconditionally loving cuteness? LET ME TELL YOU: IT’S POSSIBLE.

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And to this day, I’m still obsessed with dogs.

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To those who own dogs: WANT TO BE FRIENDS AND HANG OUT LIKE ALL THE TIME?

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