Apps for Dog Owners: Rover vs. Wag

Even when it comes to pet care, there’s an app for that. You’ll find a number of apps for dog owners available today. But how do you know which one is best and which will fit your needs?

A little research goes a long way when it comes to apps for dog owners. We’ve taken the time to review two popular apps, Wag and Rover, to help you make a decision between what to download and which app will best fit your needs for your furry friend.

What is the Best App for Dog Owners?

Two of my favorite apps for dog owners are Rover and Wag. Both apps are perfect for booking services for your dog, including walks and more. Both apps strive to connect service providers and dog owners.The apps have some similarities, but also many differences. Learn more about Wag and Rover to see which app is best for your needs.

Rover

Rover is an app for dog owners (and cat owners) that lets you book a variety of services for your four legged friend. Services available through Rover include:

  • Dog boarding
  • House sitting
  • Drop-in visits
  • Doggy day care
  • Dog walking

Services are provided by a wide range of individuals. Anyone can advertise their services on Rover, so it’s important to screen providers wisely.

I used Rover to book a day of doggy day care for Polar Bear. You’ll find service providers listed by zip code; I was able to find a provider in my neighborhood! According to her profile, she was a vet tech by profession. I was sure I’d chosen the right provider. We exchanged a few messages through Rover’s secure platform and decided to meet in person before the day of doggy day care to make sure she understood Polar Bear’s needs. We met at a dog park near our homes and it was a great fit. I’ll definitely book her services again through Rover when I need a hand with Polar Bear.

Each providers profile has in depth information. Many providers perform services in their home. The profile includes information about the type of home, other pets in the home, children in the home, house rules and more. It is wise to thoroughly read each provider’s profile to make sure they’re a fit for your dog.

Prices of services booked through Rover vary. Because the app relies on geo-location to connect pet parents and providers, the prices likely vary by location. I’m in Ocala, Florida, and prices here start at:

  • $25 for a night of dog boarding
  • $25 a day for house sitting
  • $12 for 30 minute drop-in visits
  • $25 for doggy day care
  • $12 for dog walking

Rover’s cancellation policies vary per provider. I needed a cancel a night of dog boarding booked through Rover, and I was only refunded 50 percent of the cost of services. Yes, I said refunded — you must pay for services when you book them.

I’ve had great experiences with Rover and will happily use it again to book services.

Wag

Wag is another app you can use to book services for your dog. While Rover has a bevy of service options available, Wag connects pet parents with dog walkers. You can choose between a 30-minute walk (which costs $20 in my area) and a 60-minute walk (which costs $30 in my area).  This dog walk app is currently running a promotion which allows dog owners to book their first walk for free.

With Wag, you can schedule your walk in advance or book an ASAP walk. From my experience swiping through the app, you don’t get to choose your provider. A credit card is required to book a walk and your card will be changed when the walk is complete.

If you won’t be home when you need a dog walker, you can choose a number of ways to let your walker into your home. You can hide a key or request a lock box from Wag. Wag will mail a lock box to your home at no charge. The lock box can be hung on your door knob and the code is shared with the dog walker through the secure app.

I could see myself using Wag to book a walk for Polar Bear on days I’m too busy to go home for lunch for a walk. It might also be a good option on days you’re ill or injured and not up for walking. Wag is a great way to help your dog get exercise when you’re unavailable.

4 Other Apps for Dog Owners

Rover and Wag aren’t the only options you’ll find in the app store for your pup. Everything from whistle apps to pet first aid apps are available.

Here are four other mobile apps dog lovers can download to enjoy with their pets:

  1. iClicker: Clicker training is a kind of positive reinforcement dog training. You can buy a clicker at a pet supply store, or you can download one. Search your app store for iClicker and train your dog with this happy sound.
  2. iKibble: Can your dog eat that? Instead of heading to Google for an answer, open up iKibble. This app will tell you which foods your dog can and cannot eat.
  3. Pet First Aid: You do your best to have a pet friendly home, but sometimes accidents happen. The American Red Cross has put together the Pet First Aid app to help pet owners when their furry friends are in need of care. You can also use the app to locate vets and emergency animal clinics.
  4. BringFido: There are all sorts of places you can take your dog, including many businesses that offer free stuff for dogs. Find dog friendly restaurants, hotels and destinations through the BringFido app and start planning your next outing!

What’s your favorite app to use with your pet? Drop a comment with your suggestion and Polar Bear and I will look forward to checking it out!

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