20+ Common Dog Daycare & Sitter Pricing Questions & Answers
Last Updated: April 15, 2019
How much should I charge for house and dog sitting?Deciding on how much to charge for house and dog sitting can be a difficult question. First, you'll need to decide which services you're going to be including in your service. Is it simply watching someone's pet once they drop the pet off at your house, or are you providing your own food, a brush out, walks, training etc? Those are issues you'll need to figure out when you're creating your pricing guide. However, as a rule of thumb, charging between $15 and $20 per night is considered a reasonable rate. If you're taking two dogs from the same family, you might want to consider a discount like Woof in Boots in Denver does, but that's up to you and your business team to decide.
How much should I charge to dog sit for a week?Depending on your daily rate, you'll probably want to offer discounts for long-term boarding. This acts as a nice incentive for pet parents to leave their dogs while they take long vacations during the winter months, etc. If you're charing $50/night for overnight boarding, that means that you're looking at $750 for two weeks of boarding. That might be a bit too much for some people, depending on your location. Obviously $750 is not a much for a Manhattan dog owner as it is for a central Iowa pet owner. Now Boarding Pets in Minneapolis offers several different pricing packages, based on pet weight.
What is the hourly rate for dog sitting?Based on what we see from DoggieDashboard businesses, most pet daycares and sitters don't charge an hourly rate, but rather charge a full-day or half-day rate. It's much easier to simply say that you charge $20 for half-day sitting and $40 for full-day sitting, than to say that you charge $9/hour and then you'll have to invoice your clients hourly instead of daily. However, there are businesses that charge hourly. As You Wish Pet Sitters charges $28/hour for their pet nanny service.
How much should I charge for a 30 minute dog walk?Pricing your pet walking business is going to depend greatly on your geographic area. If you're a dog walker in San Francisco, you can charge anywhere from $25 to $50 for an hour long walk, whereas a dog walker in northern Wisconsin is only able to charge around $15-$20 for that same dog walk. Using your favorite search engine, do some research to figure out what the going rate is for dog walkers in your area. At the start, you're not going to be able to charge the most for walking since you're a new business, but as time goes on and your website testimonials grow, you can increase your rates.
How much money can a dog sitter and walker make?If you're a dog sitter and walker, there's a good chance that you're running your own business. That means that you're entirely in charge of how much you earn. Based on PayScale.com, if you're considering working as a dog walker for another business, you can expect around $12/hour for your time. However, if you're running the business yourself, you can earn easily twice or three times that much money. Let's do some simple math here to see how much you can make in a month as a decently successful dog walker and sitter. You have three dogs that are staying at your house for the entire week. Each pet owner pays $20/night for your sitter service. That's 3 pets x 5 nights x $20/night for $300. Add on top of that your daily walks for other clients. You do 5 one-hour($25) walks her day for a total of $125 per day. For the week, you'll have $300 from boarding and $625 from walking for a total of $925. We'll round down to $900 a week and if you do the same every week, we're at $3,600 a month. Not bad!
How much should I charge for horse sitting?We here at DoggieDashboard are used to working with dog, cat and critter boarders. A daily rate for a teacup poodle and the daily rate for a horse are going to most likely quite different. However, after doing a bit of research, we found that the Bar W Ranch in Montana charges only $25/night for their overnight horse boarding. Who knew it was so economic?!?
Do you need insurance to be a dog walker?Definitely! Having insurance is a great way to save yourself the headache of NOT having insurance when you need it. You never know when you're going to have a pet injury on the job. Maybe you're walking one of your clients and their dog gets off the leash and runs into the street and gets hit by a car and needs emergency medical assistance. This assistance can easily run into the thousands of dollars and if you don't have insurance, that is money that is going to be coming out of your pocket. Commercial liability insurance is a smart idea, so make sure to look into it.
Can you make money pet sitting?Of course! The pet care industry is absolutely gigantic right now. People have more money to spend and they're spending a good amount of it on taking care of their pets and offering them some luxuries, like fancy pet hotels. You can make a great living running a pet sitting business. If you're curious about the kind of profitability you'll be able to achieve, use this online pet daycare profit spreadsheet tool.
Do you need a license to be a pet sitter?For this question, you're going to need to do some research. In the United States of America, you're going to have to contact your local city hall and ask them about any necessary licenses or permits. Pet sitting tends to be something that is governed on a state/city level, rather than on a national level. There's a very good chance that even just doing home pet sitting, you're going to need to get an animal boarding license from your local city government. You might be able to get away with not having a license for awhile, but if someone turns you in for running a pet sitting business without a license, you might lose the chance to reopen as a legitimate business. As an example, Marinette Dog Nanny, a Wisconsin come-to-you pet sitting service states on their website that they are not allowed to brings pets inside their home since they don't have a kennel license, but they are allowed to come into the homes of others to take care of their pets.
How many a la carte pet services should I include in my services?Once again, this is something that you're going to have to talk about with your business team. Obviously, the more a la carte services that you offer, the higher your potential revenue will be. I would suggest at least covering the basics at the start. This would include basic brush outs and nail clipping. Almost every pet owner is going to expect your business to provide these services. Once you're set up with providing those services, you can think about offering anal gland services, as well as a variety of other a la carte services that are our there these days.
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