Written by. These include choosing the proper business entity, dealing with licenses and zoning, complying with relevant health and safety … Also, definitely make sure to create your free busisness profile on Local Pet Care, a new resource created by Time To Pet to connect pet parents with local pet care pros! Starting a Dog Walking Business for Fun and Profit I'm a huge dog lover. Not only does it impress your clients, but it makes managing your growing business much easier. Accidents happen and dogs will occasionally damage property or even injure themselves or others. A former writer for Investor's Business Daily (IBD) and NerdWallet, Robyn is also the founder and director of Pretzel Kids, a children's fitness brand and online kids' yoga teacher training school. Register your business with your state's Department of Commerce and get a federal tax identification number. Starting a dog walking business doesn’t require much, making it an easy entry into entrepreneurship. She started with a google search: sole proprietorship vs LLC which didn’t take her too far. How to start a dog walking business Business name search.. Before she started her business, Tice had some ideas for her company name. Build a website, logo and social media presence Find … Time To Pet uses cookies to provide a more tailored experience to you based on your browsing and If you are more tech-savvy—you can acquire your domain name (about $10) and create a free pet sitting website using Wordpress and only pay for your hosting (around $5/month). How to Start a Dog Walking Business. If she could successfully hit on these two goals, Tice felt everyone would know her name. We met with her to learn all about the challenges to start a business, to operate a business, and ultimately to grow her dog walking business. Pet Sitter. Subscribe to Fundbox Forward for expert insights and tips every week so you can grow. Choosing the right small business structure can determine how easy or hard it is to grow a small business. For starters, set up social media pages on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. You can put these giant magnets on both sides of your car and you’ll become a moving advertisement. One of the easiest ways to market your new business is with business cards. How to start a dog walking business: step-by-step Write a dog walking business plan. The most common business … Tice was determined to create a top-quality dog care business that would serve a fun community of dog lovers. It's a great idea to have a separate bank account for your business. NerdWallet can help you find some truly free checking accounts. If you’re holding a dog owner… An LLC will cost more, but it offers more protection. Before launching her business, Tice researched potential customers, neighborhoods, and competitors. Becoming a dog walker and starting your own dog-walking business can be a good gig - there's no doubt about it. Costs of owning a dog walking business. Check out Time To Pet on a 14-day free trial to see how it can help your business. Doll... 2. Fundbox makes capital available to businesses through business loans and lines of credit made by First Electronic Bank, a Utah chartered Industrial Bank, member FDIC, in addition to invoice-clearing advances, business loans and lines of credit made directly by Fundbox. National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS), Definitive Guide To Pet Sitting Insurance, Pet First Aid for Dog Walkers and Pet Sitters. You don't need to go crazy with supplies when you are just starting out. One of the first steps to becoming a business is choosing your legal structure. It's entirely possible to start a dog walking or pet sitting business with nothing more than a cell phone, computer, printer, and some poop bags! This way you can make sure your services are priced right. Good luck! Attending a Pet First Aid Class is an excellent idea for a new pet care business owner. All these things are essential to attract customers initially. A business set up as a sole practitioner is where the owner of the business makes all decisions and is responsible … You can then post these at your local library, coffee shops and pet stores. Here are some of the steps you can take to start getting clients in the door as soon as you launch your business. these two types of small business structures. ©2020 Fundbox, Inc. All rights reserved. Expose yourself to multiple breeds to discover if there are any that you aren’t... 3. Security is our top priority. You can hand them out to friends and family and give a few to new clients to share with their neighbors. Vistaprint is very well known and has lots of templates to use too. “Besides online sites, a little grassroots advertising can go a long way”, Tice says. Before she started her business, Tice had some ideas for her company name. To be effective at market your dog walking business, you need to have a carefully thought out marketing plan. Two of the most common structures are a DBA … In order to succeed, you’ve got to attract customers to your business. The Time To Pet Academy is a great place to access free lessons on how you can start, grow, and ultimately manage your business. in-depth guide with all the resources you need to start your dog walking business! You've decided to turn your love of pet care into a career, but it can be easy to get lost in the dream of being your own boss, growing your company, and having the financial freedom you've always wanted. Starting a Dog Walking Company from Scratch Vs Buying a Franchise It is a wonderful idea to start your dog walking business from the scratch, but there are times when you just want to ride on the back of successful dog services brands. Learn how to handle all kinds of … Building a successful dog walking business can be tough. Especially when you first start out in your business, you may be tempted to fall into these dog walking traps: Accepting any job at any time without considering the long-term impact. Pet sitters are typically available during normal business … Dog sitting and dog walking are real businesses. Tice launched her dog walking business, Boston for the Dogs, four years ago. Plus, it's always better to start with software than to try and switch after your business is already big! Can we store these personalization cookies and provide you the best experience? Dog walks are usually Monday through Friday in the middle of the day. As … Who Should Start a Dog Walking Business. Check out my guide on how to start a dog walking business too, it talks about some of the topics covered here but goes into much more depth overall. Becoming a dog walker is natural career path for animal lovers. If you need a little more help—there are lots of great tools like Wix and Squarespace that will cost you anywhere from $5 to $50/month. “Sometimes dogs need more than just a neighborhood walk. If you’re starting any kind of dog walking business, … Three months ago, he turned his dream into reality by starting up his very own dog walking business, Officially Canine. It not only protects you but also can protect your clients. For example, Tice is involved with dog rescue groups. While totally optional, the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS) and Pet Sitters International (PSI) can be great resources for a new pet sitter. “I’ve got two dogs at the … A clear plan is essential for success as an entrepreneur. You can follow her on Twitter at @RobynParets and keep up with her musings on her blog Away From Om. She was aiming for a playful, catchy name. You can pick up all of these supplies from your local pet store. Stories, Bluewave While you may not need pet sitting software just as you are starting your business— getting up and running with a great system early can most certainly help. One of the first steps to becoming a business is choosing your legal structure. For more info on pet first aid, take a look at our blog post, Pet First Aid for Dog Walkers and Pet Sitters. Many people who enjoy being around dogs, but can’t commit to owning one, find this is a great middle ground. “Really, the barriers to dog walking are quite low,” Flynn said. Luckily, starting a pet care company can be relatively inexpensive compared to starting any other small business—no need to rent retail space or buy restaurant equipment! Starting a new pet sitting or dog walking business is an incredibly exciting time! A love of animals, along with trustworthiness and consistent availability, can be a sign that you could be successful in starting a pet-sitting business. Not only will you learn lots of valuable lessons, but your new clients will really appreciate the fact that you are Pet First Aid and CPR Certified. Pet Tech is a great resource, and you can also find a class near you too. Identifying the customer base and competition around your location will help inform your business … STEP 2: Form a legal entity. After that, the rest is up to you. No wonder so many people are starting pet care companies! Robyn is a journalist and business writer based in Boston. Learn about dogs. I can't remember a time in my life where there wasn't a furry, canine family member. Starting a dog walking business, like any business, takes time, patience and lots of hard work. And one of the very first steps you should consider when starting your pet sitting or dog walking business is figuring out how much it will cost. And we've owned all … Plus, we get to enjoy wild spaces right here in Boston.”. Pet Sitting Insurance is essential for a new business. For these reasons, it’s important that you insure yourself and your business. Starting a dog walking business isn’t hard, the hard part is growing your venture to profitability. Know your limits and set boundaries. Make sure you have a customer base big enough to sustain your business. Most new business owners can start their company with less than $500. According to data from Mintel, U.S. pet owners are spending $86 billion … In Tice’s case, she hit the jackpot with her $35 pack hikes – her most popular service. Professional Pet Sitter, Pet Every client will have a different routine, and every dog … Pet Sitting Software — 14 Day Free Trial. They also have other marketing materials like magnets, flyers, pens, and more. If starting a dog walking business is calling to you, you need to appear professional. While this can vary significantly from state to state and even from city to city—we've put together a "ruff" guide of the average costs. Two of the most common structures are a DBA (operating as a sole proprietor or a partnership) or an LLC. Tice recommends setting aside one day a week to do office work, including sending invoices. Follow these expert steps on how to do it 1. The Small Business Administration can help you understand what licenses are needed in your area. We use industry best practice security protocols. preferences. She was aiming for a... Small business structure.. After choosing a name, Tice had to decide on the best structure for her company. Form Your Dog Walking Business. Starting a dog walking business has its own set of legal considerations. Licensing requirements, … While that's all possible — it's important to take it one step at a time. Sitter Plus, Power Not many people will need a dog walker from 9­ to 5; instead, the hours will typically be in the middle of the day, when most people are at work. Dog walking can however be a rewarding and fulfilling way to earn a living – many people would love a job … Most jurisdictions don’t require dog walkers to get a license specific to dog walking, but many states do require business owners to get a general business license. You can find designers at fabulous rates on … If you plan to offer services that your competitors don’t have, you’ll have to come up with fair pricing that your customers can afford. Gaining Knowledge and Experience 1. Starting a pet sitting or dog walking company most certainly can give you the lifestyle and financial freedom you are dreaming of. It worked. You could start a dog walking business … You can read more about these two types of small business structures. Which means there’s a lot of heavy legal implications working behind the scenes. Tice posts pictures of her doggie clients all day long and this helps engage her community plus attract new human clients. You may also want to consider disability and life insurance. Make sure to check out our Time To Pet Academy and Blog for more great resources. What follows are a few basics that every pet car provider will need. We help pet care professionals start, grow and manage their businesses. Time To Pet is modern pet sitting software trusted by over 1,500 of the world’s most successful pet sitting and dog walking companies. You can also find a lot of great info on the Time To Pet Blog. Customer In this guest post, first-time entrepreneur and Fundbox customer Marsha Kelly shares how she grew her beauty product business, eventually …, We all know the importance of establishing a good personal credit score, but if you run a business it’s equally …, Back in the day, it was perfectly normal for a small business owner to invoice for services rendered at the …, Do you have enough money to pay your bills next month or next quarter? Before you start your dog walking business, you need to make a business plan. After choosing a name, Tice had to decide on the best structure for her company. Our monthly newsletter is full of free resources, pet care industry news, and much more! Try creating pull-tab flyers with your company information. They cost a little more, but they very user-friendly, providing drag and drop website builders. NAPPS offers a 10-day sneak peek and costs $149 for a year membership. Setting up an LLC for your business can be done via websites like... 3. And there are a lot of benefits to starting a dog walking business… Do some research to decide which is best for you. Writing a business plan before you start out helps you identify the opportunity, your... Get all the right checks. Having a different bank account for your business will make tracking expenses and taxes much more manageable. Another piece of advice from Tice: tap into local networking groups. “They gave me the best pulse on local dog walking companies and the need for dog walkers in my area”. Several providers offer Pet Sitting Insurance in the United States, but the four major providers are: Building a website is essential for your pet sitting or dog walking business. In the dog services trade… Acquire an LLC or, at the very least, a DBA filing The costs can vary based on the structure you choose and the state you live in. Legalzoom provides lots of helpful information about both types and can also help you set up your legal structure too. Start a dog walking business by following these 9 steps: STEP 1: Plan your Business. For example, if you’re starting a dog walking or grooming business, make sure it’s located near plenty of pet-friendly housing. Tice started by doing an Internet search for local dog walking companies. You need to do some research first, including the expenses and income you would need to consider for the first year. She started... Understanding … She talked to these groups about Boston for the Dogs in its early stages and those very same rescues hired her to walk their dogs. Costs to start a pet care business: LLC or DBA— $10 to $500+. This strategy has been so successful that more than 70% of new clients at Boston for the Dogs are a result of social media views, shares and tags generated by its 6,400 followers. Have a professional logo designed that will stand the test of time. Since dog walking and running services are typically repeat business… Here’s another tip: invest in a magnetic car sign emblazoned with your company name and logo. Then it’s time to …. Word about Tice quickly spread and Boston for the Dogs grew from there. The hikes engage them physically and mentally. A lot of clients will ask if you have insurance as well. To start a business is not an easy walk in the park. It is free to register for an EIN, just go to this IRS Website and follow the instructions. Next up is supplies. If you'd like to take an online course — check out PetProHero too! Professional Organizations — $0 to $304. “I love dogs and have always had them,” says Lachlan. Eventually, she talked to an accountant who helped her come up with the right structure. Volunteer … It's always a smart idea to have poop bags, a spare leash, a collapsible water bowl, and maybe a couple of dog treats. Clients look for pet sitting services online, and they expect to be able to review your website before deciding on your services. She was looking for a name of business that reflects these qualities. We have great lessons on how to track and manage your expenses, how to create a win-win referral program, how to track revenue and cash flow, and many more. Here are some tips to help you start a dog walking business. Hannalore Tice knows all about how to start a business. There is usually a ready supply of dog walking customers in any type of residential neighborhood and almost anyone can do this type of work with minimal dog handling experience. Most … Once you spend some time in the field, you will quickly find out what additional supplies you need! To apply for a business license, you will need an Employer Identification Number (EIN). Challenges of Starting a Dog Walking Business. She used Rover.com, the nation’s largest network of dog walkers and talked to pet groomers and employees at local pet stores. In a dog walking business, you’re going to be doing the same thing at the same time on the same days, consistently. Read books and articles online about different dog breeds so that you can understand and properly... 2. Now she manages a team of four walkers. PSI membership is $145 a year, with a $10 application fee for your first year only. Here is some information about opening a business bank account from the Small Business Administration. For starters, create a website to toot your own horn and post your business on online directories. Sending invoices to clients is never fun, yet it’s necessary if you want to get paid. Consider offering pet sitting as well as dog walking – pet sitting was one of our top business ideas to start in 2015. This varies based on the state you live in, and you may not be required to obtain a business license at all. But really, it’s always a good idea to talk to an accountant. Check out our Definitive Guide To Pet Sitting Insurance for a full breakdown on what Pet Sitting Insurance includes and a link to some providers. Not sure? Much like babysitting, you’ll mind your client’s pets at their home while they are away, as well … Dog walking isn’t all fun and games. To do this effectively, you’ll first have to find out what your competitors charge and offer. Dog Walking Marketing. 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