Professional Pet Sitting
By Eric Hammer
It is a fact that the pet care industry in the United States
is a multibillion dollar industry which employs tens of thousands
of people. However, even if you don't own a pet store or run
a veterinary office, it's possible to get into this remarkable
growth industry by engaging in professional pet sitting. Yes,
you can take care of other people's pets when they go on vacation
and they'll actually pay you good money for doing it.
The fact is that people have dogs and cats that need to be
taken care of when they go out of town and they don't necessarily
want to leave their best friend in a kennel. Instead, they prefer
to engage someone either to stay in the house with the animal
or to take them into their home. In all cases, professional pet
sitting can pay very good money and the best part is that if
you love dogs or cats, you're generally qualified to do the job.
How Much Can You Make?
The amount you can make with professional pet sitting varies
widely depending on a range of factors. At the bare minimum,
some people in this industry charge $10-$20 each time they drop
by to walk a dog for half an hour and others will charge as much
as $50-$100 a day to keep an animal in their home. It really
depends on the amount of work you want to do and the amount of
money people in your market are willing to spend (i.e. in a place
like New York City, you'll make more than you would make in say
Ways to Make More | Related Opportunities
In addition to making money from professional pet sitting,
it's also possible to contract your services out as a dog walker.
In essence this means that people who need to leave for work
early in the morning will pay you to take their dog out for a
walk in the morning and sometimes in the evening. Some professional
dog walkers actually take as many as 5-6 dogs at a time for a
walk meaning that if you do this twice a day you could easily
make as much as $100-$200 a day for your trouble.
Remember that animals, especially dogs are social creatures.
This means that professional pet sitting means more than making
sure that food is put out for them and that the litter box is
emptied (for cats). You'll also be expected to spend time with
these animals so that they don't end up feeling neurotic when
their owners come home (in spite of what some people think about
them being "just animals," dogs and cats do have feelings
and can go crazy if they don't get any social contact).
You should also think carefully about how many animals you
can reasonably take care of at any given time. Cats for example
generally don't need to be walked, so you can potentially do
more cats than dogs because you simply need to drop by, make
sure their food is available and the litter box is cleaned out.
Dog owners on the other hand will often pay more because they
know that their animals need additional care.
Qualifications / Requirements
The great thing about professional pet sitting is that in
most states, you don't need a license to do it. You may need
to apply for a license if you plan to offer a full service kennel,
however in most cases, professional pet sitters simply work by
word of mouth and take on these jobs in much the same ways as
babysitters take on their jobs - with an informal arrangement.
Start by advertising your services to the local community
through flyers. Contact your friends and family as well and ask
them to recommend you. Consider offering to do the job for free
with someone before you take on a paid project.
Check out these helpful resources to learn more about professional
Asssociation of Professional Pet Sitters - A national organization
providing professional certification for pet sitters.
Pet Sitting and More - A good example of a website from someone
who works in the professional pet sitting industry.