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How to Get More Pet Time – Without Owning a Pet!

By Rover
published: July 13, 2018 - updated: August 17, 2021 • 3 min. read
get more pet time
get more pet time

If you’re a pet parent, or a pet lover, you probably already know that connecting and spending time with cats and dogs can reduce blood pressure, alleviate stress, and bring about a feeling of happiness and well-being.

But what if you can’t have pets in your apartment, or you travel too often for work and are unable to commit to having a dog or cat just yet? Well, there are plenty of solutions for animal lovers like yourself, some of which will even put some extra cash in your pockets:

  • Volunteer

Many rescue organizations need an extra hand – whether that is someone to come in and play with the dogs and cats (and rabbits and guinea pigs) in the afternoons, someone to walk the dogs, or even someone to perform general cleanup duties. To find a group with which to donate your time, start with your nearby shelters and work your way out. Don’t forget that the pets you’ll be helping out will be especially appreciative of your time!

  • Foster 

The next level of volunteering is being a foster pet parent! This is ideal for those who are allowed to have animals in their living spaces and are home at regular times. You’ll be required to care for the animal as if they were your own, so a normal routine is key. The overhead is minimal: depending on the organization, they will take care of all medical expenses and even food and accessories (leashes, beds). For any unreimbursed expenses for fostering a pet for a non-profit adoption organization, costs can be deducted for tax purposes. This includes food, supplies, vet bills and up to 14-cents per mile for trips made to further the shelter’s work.

Fostering is especially beneficial to those who already have pets who might be lonely – a foster friend can really brighten up the week while the rescue works to find them a forever home.

  • Be a Dog-Walker

What could be better than getting paid to hang out with dogs? While there is quite a bit of responsibility involved, walking dogs does have its fun advantages. If you’re experienced enough to care for all kinds of canines, signing up with a service like, the nation’s largest network of 5-star of pet sitters and walkers, not only lets you spend time with pups, but also gets you out moving and earning extra cash. It’s also a lucrative client-based career as well; most busy pet parents will tell you how important and beloved their dog walker is! If you haven’t already, check out and see what it means to be a Rover dog walker, and what you need to get started.

  • Be a Pet-Sitter

In addition to walking dogs, also allows pet lovers to sign up as sitters. Pet sitting is great for the pets involved as they are ultimately happier and less stressed than if they are housed in a kennel. Their routines are uninterrupted, and they aren’t exposed to outside illnesses or unknown animals if they remain in the home. It’s also great for the sitter: a break from your everyday life to care for dogs while you get paid. Learn more about pet sitting here.

  • Help a friend/family member out!

Got a friend with a cat or a dog who needs a break? Offer to play, walk or stay with their pets while they go out, run errands or even get away for the weekend. You’ll reap the benefits of hanging out with a furry friend, and your not-so-furry friend won’t worry as they tackle chores or trips.

When the time is right to go from pet lover to pet parent, start by learning the ins-and-outs of adoption – check with local organizations and rescues, and don’t forget to research pet insurance! Accidents and illnesses can surprise even the most experienced pet parent, and with Healthy Paws Pet Insurance, you can save up to 90% on vet bills. Start by getting a free quote.

This post is brought to you in partnership with Rover. Founded in 2011 with headquarters based in Seattle, WA, Rover is the nation’s largest network of 5-star pet sitters and dog walkers.

rover logo
By Rover

Rover is the nation’s largest network of 5-star pet sitters and dog walkers, based in Seattle, Wash. Rover believes everyone deserves the unconditional love of a pet, and it exists to make it easier to experience that love. The Rover app and website connect dog and cat parents with loving pet sitters and dog walkers in neighborhoods across the US, Canada, the UK, and Europe. Rover empowers a community of loving pet sitters and dog walkers to run their pet care businesses on Rover with the tools and security of our global company to back them. This includes access to a support team that’s available 24/7, the Rover Guarantee and sitter background checks to put their clients’ minds at ease, and photo updates so pet parents can keep up with their pets’ every adventure. Rover and Healthy Paws Pet Insurance have exchanged blog content.

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