We are committed to providing our clients with the best possible care for their pets, with a premium on communication and flexibility.
We enjoy our job, take pride in our work, and hope that our service speaks for itself.
— Meet our dog walkers —
To us, Brighter Days means moving past armchair platitudes about the value of democracy and practicing it every day in our work. It means six weeks of paid vacation every year and the opportunity to join a group health plan. It means making a living without compromising our ideals or having to neglect personal pursuits.
It means learning more about business ownership and encouraging others to experiment with egalitarian models. And it means caring for animals and getting paid to exercise. Could be worse!
Brighter Days is an employee-owned cooperative
We all walk dogs, and we all pitch in to keep the administrative side of the business running. No bosses–or all bosses, depending on how you look at it. We share in the successes while laying the failures at the feet of whoever isn’t at that week’s meeting (just kidding…we share the failures too).
Through the extremes of District summers and winters; the weird hours; and the occasional, devastatingly compromised poop bag; the reward is ownership of our labor–an experience we share with far too few people around the globe.
What shared ownership means for Brighter Days staff
The nature of our business model requires communication and coordination with each other on a daily, sometimes hourly, basis. Sharing information and planning ahead are essential.
The result is that each of us has a broad understanding of all aspects of the job; and while every collective member possesses a unique set of skills and interests, all of us function as both owners and workers.
So when one of us decides to avail him- or herself of a slice of our generous annual paid vacation, that person can confidently and honestly vouch for whichever coworker is shouldering his or her workload during that time.
How shared ownership benefits our dog-walking clients
First, and most importantly, our model establishes a direct relationship between client and walker (or sitter).
You provide instructions and request scheduling changes with that person, who in turn will keep you updated on your pet’s status (upset stomach, burgeoning superiority complex, etc.).
On days when your primary walker can’t walk your dog, you can rest assured that the walker covering has an ownership stake in the company.
Additionally, our clients can take comfort in the knowledge that we do what we can to make the seemingly innocuous task of dog walking a socially meaningful endeavor.
We bike instead of drive. We give financial support to local organizations working on the front lines of progressive change. And–maybe; hopefully–we offer an example of workplace democracy that encourages others to take control of their livelihoods.