Starting a dog walking business is a great way to make some extra money, and get lots of exercise.
You create happy and healthy dogs, and you get lots of fresh air.
If this is the type of business, you would feel comfortable doing, then you need to take inventory of yourself. Ask yourself these questions and follow these steps so that you are prepared for your new idea.
1. Are you physically fit? How big a pet can you handle on a walk? Are you willing to walk more than one at a time?
2. Once you have figured out, just how many dogs and what size of pooches, and got yourself a good pair of walking shoes, then you are ready for the next step.
3. Phone around and find out how much other dog walking businesses are charging. Find out the going rate. Is there a higher rate for one on one poochie walks, and a discounted rate if the dog is walked with other ones? Some don't like being walked with others, you may need to charge more for a special service. Yet other pets love being social. Get to know the dogs in your neighborhood.
4. Figure out your own schedule and when you would be available to walk dogs. Will you walk a few together, or one on one at different times.
5. Print yourself a business card with your phone number on it, and have an invoice book. This makes you look more professional.
Amazon Price: $19.95 $14.08 Buy Now
(price as of Mar 23, 2016)
Once you have followed the above steps, you will know exactly what you are willing to do for your business. You can then answer questions confidently when you are asked "when are you available" "what are your fees" , without hesitating and looking unprepared.
You have to remember. Pets are considered a member of the family, very much loved and protected for many families. So, you have to look confident and good natured and love their pet. If they are going to trust you with their dog, they have to feel confident that you know what you are doing.
After doing your preparation, you need to let people know that you are starting this business. You can start with your neighbors. If you own your own dog (even better), and your pooch is very friendly, then go to your neighbors with yours, and let them know that you are starting a business, and let them see your dog. This is a great way to get started. Hopefully you know your neighbors, and this gets you started..
If you are short of money, while trying to get this business, you could offer a "new dog discount", where if they pay for that first week in advance, you will give them a discount. Otherwise, work out a payment plan, whether they pay you per week, or per month, or just for the odd walk, keep track of your customers.
With everyone so busy with work and commuting farther and farther, dogs are left at home much longer and longer. Many dogs, get lonely and start creating havoc in the house while their owners are away. Many dog owners would welcome someone like you to start walking their dog. In this case, they may trust you with a key to their house, make sure and safeguard any keys you are given.
Or, the homeowners are just too tired to walk their dog when they get home, you can offer to do after work or after dinner walks. This all depends on your availability and your own working hours.
Amazon Price: Buy Now
(price as of Mar 23, 2016)
Many people have made this in to a full time job. One girl, didn't even have to leave her neighborhood! She has enough dogs, and makes her living this way. It is better if you don't have to go to far to find your customers, it makes it easier if they are part of your neighborhood. Chances are your neighbors have met you or know you, and will feel comfortable with the idea of your dog walking business.
Finding a need in the community, is a great way to start a business, and this type of business is a great niche. You could branch out into visiting other pets, such as cats, or letting dogs out when their owners are delayed or for emergencies, such as a neighbor not being able to make it home because of weather.
If you have given your card out to the neighborhood. Chances are, there are a few dogs amongst those neighbors. Even if they don't need your services as a dog walker, they may hang onto your card for emergencies. Your business will grow via word of mouth, and there will be a lot of happy and healthy dogs in your neighborhood, and you will be fit yourself!. This is a win win business!