Podcast Episode 201: Adding Products to your Dog Walking Business with Liz Williams of High Tail Hikes

In this episode I’m talking to Liz Williams who has had a dog hiking business in the Bay Area since 2015. In early 2020, sparked by pandemic shut downs, she started selling the biothane leashes she’d been making for herself and her clients at High Tail Hikes. Her initial audience was other local pet professionals. In the last year and a half, she’s expanded the product business to offer more variety and reach dog lovers across the country. It turns out, pet parents love buying products created by a professional dog hiker!

She shared with me some of the keys to starting and growing a product business while simultaneously continuing to operate the dog hike services. It has a lot to do with hiring help and building trust with your team so you can learn to let go.

Should you offer products to your clients, local community or pet lovers around the country? Come brainstorm about it in the Wear Wag Repeat Labs Facebook group. There are other petpreneurs in there who juggle multiple businesses, too!

Dog Products Created by a Professional Dog Hiker

Liz Williams is the owner of High Tail Hikes, a professional dog walking company and product business based in Oakland, California since 2015. High Tail Hikes specializes in off leash group trail hikes for dogs, with a focus on safety, enrichment, and meeting the unique needs of each individual dog.

High Tail Hikes also sells high quality products created with the expertise of a professional dog hiker! Their handmade leashes, long lines, collars, and accessories that are waterproof, odor proof, antimicrobial, fully customizable, and come in a variety of colors and styles. Through both her service and product businesses, Liz advocates for the use of positive reinforcement training techniques to teach, motivate, and better understand the dogs we share our lives with. Liz lives in Oakland with her husband, 10 year old corgi mix Charlie, and 2.5 year old son.

Overview of this Episode:

  • Why Liz wanted to offering a hiking-specific dog walking business
  • Why leash products were introduced as an additional offering of the business
  • How Liz structures her time to balance her different services
  • Advice for how to help make your team members successful
  • How to build trust with your audience
  • Why you should or shouldn’t sell products in your service business

Resources:

Where to find Liz:

You will also hear me mention a feature I had in Pretty Fluffy back in the day. That post shows a very young Lucy and my previous dog Lola with photos by Jenny Karlsson.

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You can listen to the Wear Wag Repeat Podcast through Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play and many other podcast players. Subscribe so you don’t miss a single dog-inspired episode!

If you love what you hear and want to support my efforts to shine a light on more women making it work in the pet industry, please leave a review for my show on iTunes. More reviews help more people discover the show and hear our stories! Reviewing Tip: If you’re on a computer, open the link then click “Listen on Apple Podcasts” and scroll to the bottom to write a review.

You can also see all the episodes on the Podcast page of my site.

Spend Less Time Working, and More Time with Your Dog

The Wear Wag Repeat Resource Guide has over 160 apps, tools and resources recommended by my podcast guests that will help you run an efficient and successful pet industry business!

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