Dog-walking services have graduated from flyers on poles to full-fledged serious businesses. The final coming-of-age moment is the arrival of Pet Check Technology, a suite that brings QR codes, mobile apps, and GPS to the dog-walking experience.
For dog-walking entrepreneurs, Pet Check includes online tools for scheduling clients, billing, and tracking dog-walking employees. That's all well and good, but it's a lot more fun when you look at it from the customer's standpoint.
Customers can look to see exactly when Fido was taken out on a jaunt, where he went, and what time he got back. That can help with scheduling when you need to be home from work. Completed walk reports are stored for future reference.
Here's what goes on behind the scenes. The dog walker scans a QR code with the Pet Check mobile app for iOS or Android when arriving to pick up a pooch. GPS tracks the walk and another QR code scan signals the end of the stroll.
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Pet Check sends an e-mail alert each time the customer's QR code is scanned. The customer can then watch the walk happen on an online map. For people who don't have actual human children they can track with GPS, Pet Check gives the same peace of mind with a pooch--minus the thorny privacy issues.
Pet Check has just launched in California with plans to expand nationwide. The "Pet Check" name leaves this technology open to use for other species. It should, therefore, work just as well with otter-, elephant-, or robot-walking services.