How to Start a Pet Sitting Business

Dog Walking Business

If you’re an animal lover interested in making some extra money, a pet sitting business could be a lucrative and fulfilling opportunity for you. With the rise in dual-income households and more people than ever owning animals, there is a growing need for quality pet sitting services while the owners are at work, on vacation, or tending to other obligations.

Start your own home-based pet sitting business

Compared to other types of companies, it’s fairly simple to start a home-based pet sitting business. Start-up costs are minimal, and you can begin working as soon as you find clients who need your services.

The first step is deciding what type of pet sitting services you plan to offer. The typical pet sitter will work for a number of clients, visiting their homes during the day to feed, water, walk, and even play with their animals. Some visiting pet sitters also offer additional household services, such as bringing in the mail and putting out the trash. This means you’ll need reliable transportation, and perhaps a small stock of emergency supplies to get started.

Another type of pet sitting service is the in-home pet day care. In this case, clients bring their animals to the sitter’s home during the day while they’re at work. If you’re starting a pet day care, you’ll need to make sure your home is pet-proof, and that your own pets will be able to get along with other animals. You should have plenty of available space, in case you need to separate some of your guests.

In either case, strive to be as professional as possible when operating a pet sitting business. Above all, pet owners are looking for someone they can trust. While there is no licensing required for pet sitters, it’s a good idea to purchase pet sitter liability insurance from a company such as Pet Sitters Associates, LLC, which protects both you and your clients. You may also want to consider joining organizations such as the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters and/or Pet Sitters International.

There are many ways to find clients for your pet sitting services. If you have pets of your own, you may already have some contacts through social pet gathering venues, like dog parks. Networking and word of mouth are excellent ways to find clients, so don’t hesitate to ask people if they know anyone who needs help. You can also advertise your business with flyers and postcards, and set up a website and Facebook page so pet owners can find you online.

It’s fairly easy to open a pet sitting business—in fact, you could have your first client tomorrow. Why not get started now?