Dog walker “finds joy” with furry pets amid lockdown blues

One dog walker says he often walks about 25 dogs per day

By Ashraf Hendricks

22 January 2021

Dog walker Knowledge Nyamutowera says he walks as many as 25 dogs per day along the Sea Point promenade. Photo: Ashraf Hendricks

Knowledge Nyamutowera came to Cape Town from Zimbabwe almost three years ago. He has been walking dogs at Paw Pets in Sea Point for over a year and a half now.

“I’m just doing this for a living,” he says.

Nyamutowera works from 8am to 5pm on weekdays and two Saturdays a month from 9:30am - 2pm. Nyamutowera said that he and his older brother are supporting their parents and two sisters who live in Delft.

On any given day, he said, he walks about 25 dogs. He likes his job because he gets to interact with people from different walks of life … and dogs, he joked.

At Paw Pets, dog owners have the option to either drop their pets off for the day or staff can arrange to pick them up from their homes.

Another dog walker (volunteer) says it has been a struggle “finding joy in life” and “staying motivated” during the pandemic. But says she found joy spending time with the furry companions. “I go play with dogs in a doggy day care to bring me joy.”

This volunteer dog walker says it has helped her “find joy in life” during the pandemic. Photo: Ashraf Hendricks

She went on to say that it has helped her cope and gave some structure to her days.

Since the start of the lockdown, they have found that many dogs have become aggressive. “The dogs sometimes pick up on the anxiety of the owners”. To assist with this, the dog handlers often include basic obedience training in their sessions.

Nyamutower can regularly be found walking, leashes in hand with a bunch of dogs on the Sea Point promenade.