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6 Best Pet Business Ideas To Explore If You Are An Animal Lover

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Being an animal lover, have you ever thought about turning your love for pets and companionship into a fulfilling career? If you have, then this article is for you! Yes, we are talking about lucrative pet business ideas that you can explore and maybe even start in 2024.

While there are so many pet business ideas to choose from, we have picked out six of the best ones that are not just unique but also super exciting and in demand. In this blog post, we will also explore the profitability of pet businesses and, most importantly, the steps to kickstart your own venture. So, let's begin!

How Profitable Is a Pet Business?

Is a pet business profitable?

Source: iStock

Picture this: A $500B market and you can start this business with little to no initial investment.

That's how big the pet business market is expected to hit globally by 2030, with the US being the most significant market amongst other countries. The reasons for this boom are many, including

  • Improved pet ownership as more and more people are welcoming pet companions into their homes. This, in turn, expands the need and demand for pet-related products and services.
  • Pets are the pampered loved members of families right now. This means personalized care, premium food, accessories, and many more.
  • Busy pet owners are always on the lookout for paid services that will make their lives easier by helping them take care of their pets. Some of the most common services pet parents look at are dog walking, dog boarding, and delivery of pet supplies.

From a bigger angle, the pet business is indeed a profitable business. In order to ensure even your pet business runs successfully, driving you ample profits, you need to keep in mind a few things.

  • Firstly, don't be hasty. Starting any business and making it profitable takes time. On average, some businesses take 2-3 years to become profitable. If you are earning more than your expenses, it means your business is profitable. So, don't be afraid to give it time.
  • Do marketing. Explore social media and all other methods of online marketing. Pet businesses work efficiently both locally and globally if you are planning to sell pet supplies and food. You will only get customers once you get your brand out there. Market to your target audience repeatedly and highlight your USPs clearly.
  • Never compromise on what you are offering. Word-of-mouth marketing plays a big role in this type of business. More and more customers will get to know your brand positively only if you are able to render quality products and services to your existing customers. Happy customers mean not only repeated customers but also referrals!

If you are starting your pet business online, then your initial capital or investment is significantly less compared to putting up a physical store where you will have building costs, labor, material costs, etc., to begin with. However, pet stores, in general, are able to drive a decent income annually.

How to Start a Pet Business?

How to start a pet business

Source: Canva

Here are the eight must-know steps to starting your very own pet business.

Read more: Easy Dog Business Ideas You Can Start At Home

#1 - Do Your Research

Like we discussed above, the pet business is a multi-billion dollar industry. The bigger the industry, the bigger the competition. So, before you begin your journey of starting a pet business, do in-depth research on the market and your target audience. Ask and find the answers to the following questions:

  • What are people buying for their pets?
  • What are the latest and greatest products and services?
  • What makes your business unique?
  • Will you specialize in a certain type of pet, offer a particular service, or cater to a niche market like organic pet food or luxury accessories?
  • Who are your main competitors?
  • What are your competitors doing well?
  • What can you do better?

#2 - Develop a Foolproof Business Plan

Your business plan is your blueprint for a profitable business. When preparing your business plan, you should include your business's mission, target market, marketing strategies you want to adopt, capital investment and other financial projections, and finally, an exit strategy.

#3 - Have a Business Structure in Place

Even if you are thinking of starting your pet business on a small scale or as a small business, you need to choose from the relevant business structures available in your country. You can choose from sole proprietorship, partnership, or limited liability company (LLC). Each has its own advantages and disadvantages, so you'll need to choose the one that's right for you.

#4 - Apply and Get the Licenses and Permits

The specific licenses and permits you'll need will vary depending on your location and the type of business you're starting. However, some common licenses and permits include

  • Business licenses
  • Zoning permit
  • Health department permits
  • Pet-related licenses (e.g., dog walking licenses and pet boarding licenses)

#5 - Acquire Necessary Funding

Certain types of pet businesses need larger amounts of funding. If you have such requirements for your business, you can explore the following options:

  • Bootstrapping (using your own money)
  • Getting a loan from a bank or credit union
  • Raising money from investors

#6 - Set Up Your Business In An Appropriate Location

If you're going to set up a brick-and-mortar pet store, you'll need to find a suitable location with plenty of foot traffic. If you're starting an online business, you'll need to choose an appropriate platform like Shopify. Starting an online business gives you access to a much larger business base, which is definitely a benefit you need to consider.

You can sign up for a free 3-day trial period on Shopify, and the best part is that you can get Shopify's paid plan at $1/month for three months. You can access it here.

#7 - Make Marketing Your Bread and Butter

Once you're up and running, you need to start marketing your business. This includes things like:

  • Creating a website and social media presence
  • Running online and offline ads
  • Participating in pet-related events and trade shows
  • Networking with other pet businesses

Ensure you explore even your competitor's favorite marketing channels, as these channels would also have your target customer base present.

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#8 - Offer Excellent Customer Service All the Way

One of the most important things you can do to ensure the success of your pet business is to provide excellent customer service. This means being friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable about your products and services from the beginning till the end.

6 Unique Animal Business Ideas for Pet Lovers

  • Pet Photography

Pet photography is a lucrative pet business idea.

Source: Instagram

Love cameras or capturing those one-of-a-kind moments of your pets? Then why not convert it into a business? Pet owners love hiring pet photographers as they capture those playful moments and silly and goofy expressions that can last for a lifetime. At the same time, a professional pet photographer would also ensure the pets feel relaxed and comfortable during the photo session for the best results. So, if you have got the knack, this one is for you! In fact, according to the American Pet Products Association, over $10.3 billion was spent on pet services in 2019, with the majority of the services rendered being pet photography. And the trend still continues.

Pros:

  • They are popular.
  • Camera and photography equipment, along with basic editing software and a knack for animal behavior, are all you need, hence low startup costs.
  • Immense creative freedom to experiment with lighting, angles, and themes.

Cons:

  • Photography and editing expertise are absolutely essential.
  • It might take time to get a good clientele base.
  • Dealing with energetic animals that you haven't worked with previously can be challenging.
Pro Tip: Consider offering themed photo shoots, mini-sessions, and package deals for different occasions.

    Ronan Nind, an award-winning pet photographer, captures stunning portraits of dogs and cats in their natural environments.  His page on Instagram is totally worth checking out!

    Quick read: 10 Ideas To Bring Your Shopify Pet Store Dream Into A Reality

    • Pet Bakery

    Pet bakery

    Source: The Pawfect Patisserie

    A pet bakery focuses on making and selling a variety of treats, snacks, and baked goods exclusively designed for pets (most commonly for house pets like dogs and cats). Pet owners love giving their lovely pet companions a safe and healthy treat. This is the reason why pet bakeries love pet foods from bakeries, as they can purchase high-quality, pet-friendly, and delicious-looking treats. According to Google Trends, people worldwide have been searching actively for pet bakeries since 2018.

    Google Trends graph showing the search demand for pet bakeries worldwide.

    Source: Google Trends

    The Pawfect Patisserie, a Shopify pet bakery store just does that with their scrumptious dog and cat baked treats.

    Pros:

    • Demand for natural and healthy pet treats is booming.
    • You can play with flavors and ingredients to create unique and delicious treats.
    • Unique recipes with specific ingredients can command premium prices.

    Cons:

    • Understanding animal nutrition and safety regulations is crucial.
    • There could be other established brands that you have to compete with.
    • Maintaining freshness and ensuring product safety requires careful planning.

    Pro Tip: Offer personalized treats for birthdays, holidays, and special occasions.

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      • Dog Treats

      Forthglade is a popular dog food brand.

      Source: Forthlade

      Dog treats are a fun and profitable pet business idea to look into. In this business, you can sell healthy dog treats of different kinds. This includes jerky and freeze-dried treats, dog biscuits, hypoallergenic treats, and other homemade treats made with fine ingredients, and it is aimed to improve the health of the canine friends. Forthglade, a leading Shopify pet store is a popular online pet business specializing in pet food that sells a wide range of delicious products for dogs.

      Pros:

      • Increased pet ownership means increased focus on pet health and healthy dog treats.
      • You can experiment with flavors, ingredients, and forms (biscuits, jerky, frozen treats).
      • Unique and delicious homemade treats can be sold at premium prices due to the high-quality ingredients used.

      Cons:

      • As there are many well-known dog treat businesses available locally and globally, you could face some fierce competition.
      • Understanding canine nutrition and safety regulations to produce healthy treats is important.
      Pro Tip: Focus on a specific niche (e.g., organic, allergy-friendly, gourmet) to stand out from the competition.
        • Pet Boarding

        Pet boarding or dog boarding can be coupled with additional services.

        Source: The Dog Kennel Collection

        The global pet boarding market is on the rise and is projected to reach $35.8 billion by 2031. This is your chance to utilize the opportunity it brings to your advantage. Owning a pet boarding business involves providing a safe and comfortable space for pets when their owners are away. This pet business idea helps tap[ing into the increasing demand for reliable and caring pet care services. You are essentially offering peace of mind to pet owners, which is precisely your USP. If you are looking to work as an individual. In that case, you can even sign up for pet-sitting communities like Pawshake or create a platform like this and have local pet sitters or boarding places sign up to your platforms so pet owners can easily find suitable people to board their pets.

        Pros:

        • This pet business idea can drive repeat business from satisfied clients.
        • Reliable and caring boarding facilities are always in demand.
        • You can also offer add-on services for additional revenue through pet grooming, training, and playtime.

        Cons:

        • This business requires adequate space and equipment, and insurance can be expensive.
        • Licensing and permits also vary by location, so you might need to plan this well.
        • Handling multiple pets with different needs can be challenging, and you might have to hire more pet caretakers for the same.
        Pro Tip: Partner with local veterinarians or offer pick-up and drop-off services for added convenience.
          • Animal Blogging/Vlogging

          Animal vlogging and blogging lets you merge your love for pets with the digital world.

          Source: Canva

          Got a furry friend who steals the show wherever they go? Then grab your camera and microphone because it's time to share your awesome personality with the world! Animal blogging and vlogging offer a perfect way to connect with other pet lovers and can even turn this into a money-making business idea. You can share care tips for new pet owners, vlog or blog on aspects of pet health, etc., by creating a YouTube channel or a blog and maybe even collaborate with other pet owners.

          The Pet Collective is an online pet-oriented vlogging channel.

          Source: The Pet Collective

          The Pet Collective is one such pet vlogging channel that shares essential tips, DIY content, and much more for pet owners.

          Pros:

          • You can share your love for animals and connect with a like-minded community.
          • Minimal equipment is needed, such as a phone camera or a laptop, which is sufficient to start blogging and vlogging.
          • You can also explore sponsorships, affiliate marketing, and ad revenue.
          • You can work on your terms and create content at your own pace.

          Cons:

          • Gaining a substantial following online requires patience and consistent effort.
          • Generating a stable income will also take time.
          • The market is crowded; hence, creating content that grabs attention and stands out may be difficult.
          Pro Tip: Engage pet owners actively. Respond promptly to queries, share behind-the-scenes glimpses, and encourage user-generated content.
            • Animal Trainer

            An animal trainer helps improve your pets with behavior, skills, and discipline.

            Source: Pexels

            Animal training as a pet business idea involves:

            • Offering professional training services to pet owners.
            • Helping them address behavioral issues.
            • Obedience training.
            • Enhancing the overall relationship between pets and their owners.

            As a trainer, you have to use positive reinforcement techniques to teach commands and correct behavior and ensure a harmonious coexistence between animals and their human companions.

            Pros:

            • Training animals and pets is a rewarding experience as you will be able to see a positive transformation in them.
            • Pet training is an important part of the pet industry, and more people are increasingly learning about this to have their pets disciplined and well-behaved at all times.
            • You can offer obedience, behavior, and specialty training services, depending on your expertise.

            Cons:

            • You will need special certifications and ample experience to enter this field and acquire clients.
            • This pet business may fluctuate seasonally or due to economic factors.
            Pro Tip: Clearly communicate training goals, progress, and expectations with pet owners. Create a website with your offerings clearly stated, similar to Dan Perata’s dog training website.

              Perfect Name for a Pet Shop - Kickstarting Your Pet Business Journey

              How to choose the perfect name for your pet business?

              Source: Canva

              So, you are all set to turn these pet business ideas into a reality. You know how to start and what business to start. But wait. What about the name?

              A business is known by its name, and picking the right name is needed to establish a strong brand identity. A good business name attracts potential customers to your business and also sets the tone. You can name your business a unique pet-friendly name or your own name if you would like the business to be known by your name.

              Remember:

              • Your pet store name is often the first thing customers encounter. A catchy and relevant name creates a positive and memorable first impression.
              • An appealing name attracts customers, and a memorable one ensures they come back.

              You can use Shop Name Ideas by PageFly to generate creative and relevant shop name ideas. Utilize this tool to brainstorm and find a name that resonates with your pet business vision.

              Wrapping Up

              So there you have it! Six exciting pet business ideas to fuel your entrepreneurial spirit and turn your love for animals into a thriving venture. Whether you're a natural-born trainer, a baking extraordinaire, or a tech-savvy pet photographer, there's a niche waiting for your unique talents.

              Remember, the pet industry is booming, driven by a world full of passionate animal lovers just like you. So, don't wait too long! Start your pet business journey today!

              Explore more, check out: How to Start A Cat Business: A Comprehensive Guide for Beginners

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