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How To Start and Operate a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business

These sessions of "How To Start and Operate a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business" will take you from the very beginning, when you're only thinking about starting this business, to organizing it and finally to the point where you will collect your fees in checks or credit card payments.
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How To Start and Operate a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business
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Now displaying: 2016
Dec 24, 2016

On this Christmas Day Eve, I want to send to all you dog walkers and pet sitters … those of you who are established in business and those of you who are still thinking about it … a very Merry Christmas and a Happy Hanukkah, a Merry Quansa and a joyous Festivus. If you celebrate some other holiday at this time of the year, my wishes to you as well.

If you’re already in business, you’ll surely be getting plenty of holiday gifts in the form of food and gift cards. Be sure to thank your customers. And for your customers who didn’t leave anything for you, send them a cheery holiday greeting as well.

For those of you who are still planning on getting into this business, it’s time to get off your butts and get this show moving! There’s nothing better than a New Year’s Resolution to take your destiny into your own hands.

Happy Holidays you wonderful, wonderful animal lovers!

Dec 15, 2016

In this session of “How To Start and Manage a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting

Business,” I’m going to talk to Mary Oberdier, the owner of Chase’n Tails Pet Care, LLC in Manatee County, Florida.

 

If you’d like to get in touch with Mary, you can email her at:

chasentails@yahoo.com

 

or go to her website:

www.chasentailspetcare.com/

 

Finally, you can also catch her on her Facebook page at:

www.facebook.com/ChasenTailsPetCareLlc

 

Chase’n Tails Pet Care’s business telephone number is:

941-447-9528

 

If you want to contact Mary, please be respectful of her time. She is a professional working hard at her business.

 

Drop me an email at dogwalkerpodcast@gmail.com and ask your questions, offer your comments OR tell me that you’d like to be interviewed by me on an upcoming session.

 

Nov 27, 2016

I’ve been collecting these Random Thoughts since I started this podcast over a year ago. I kept them in my notes with the idea of incorporating them into their own sessions but I soon learned that they don’t carry enough weight on their own to warrant full sessions by themselves. They are important enough, however to be aired somewhere. That somewhere is here.

Oct 25, 2016

 

Today I’ll be talking with two friends who over a period of time decided that they wanted to be in control of their own destinies. You’ll hear how Darrell Kelton and Javier Vega carefully planned their business, Leash Dog Care, how they then quit their regular jobs and how then jumped head first into this business without any regrets.

Business: Leash Dog Care

Owners: Darrell Kelton andJavier Vega

Location: Boston, MA

Bus Phone: 617-294-9455

Website: www.leashdogcare.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/leashdogcare

Twitter @leashdogcare

Instagram @leashdogcare

 

Sep 23, 2016

When it comes to money, making it is only part of the problem. Retaining as much as you can, is the other part of it. I think that we all know this, but what we often don’t realize in time is that there are a number of financial obligations that we have to pay, whether we want to or not. Often those bills come at the most inopportune time. 

That inopportune time when money is needed most for dog walkers and pet sitters is often during income tax time AND when our annual insurance and bonding payments are due. 

Until you get more experience with your expenditures, set aside 22% of everything that you make. That should keep you out of trouble.

Jul 31, 2016

In this session of “How To Start and Manage a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business,” I’ll talk to you about how you can adjust your business to accommodate a shifting customer base, especially during the summer when many customers order a temporary service stoppage.

Jul 8, 2016

In this session of “How To Start and Manage a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business,” I’ll introduce you to your first dog walking job.

Listen to how I suggest that you approach your first dog walking or pet sitting job.

I’ll walk you through your initial preparations through the time that you close the door and leave for your next job.

Comments, questions and critiques can be left at dogwalkerpodcast@gmail.com

May 12, 2016

In this session of “How To Start and Manage a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business,” I’m going to chat with Amanda Krom, the owner of Amanda’s Paw Pals in HIGGANUM, Connecticut.

 

Amanda’s Paw Pals at www.amandaspawpals.com

Also look for Amanda’s Paw Pals on Facebook

Apr 16, 2016

Listen to how Ally Mayer, the owner of The Waggly Tail started her business.

Great chat!

If you’d like to get in touch with Ally or learn more about The Waggly Tail, please visit her website at www.thewagglytail.com. For your daily dose of cute pet pics, follow her on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/thewagglytail) and Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/thewagglytailllc/).

Mar 21, 2016

Customer Relations is the process of keeping your customers happy and keeping them from fleeing to your competition.

Although Customer Relations is the third leg of the three-legged customer development process, after Marketing and Sales, in my opinion, it is THE most important leg.

My six Principles of Customer Relations:

  1. Do your job well
  2. Be accessible
  3. Query your customers about how you’re doing
  4. IMMEDIATELY address any problems and make them good
  5. Offer extra, free services that your customer did not expect
  6. Clean up after yourself

If you haven’t done so yet, please subscribe to this podcast and LIKE it.

To do so, go to iTunes and look for this podcast by searching for “How To Start and Operate a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business.

Once you find it, please LIKE the podcast.

Finally, would you like to talk to me about your plans or questions about this business? If so, please email me at dogwalkerpodcast@gmail.com. I’d like to talk to you over Skype and if you agree, put our talk on an upcoming session of “How To Start and Operate a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business.” I think it’ll be a blast for both of us. Don’t worry if you haven’t done anything to start your business yet. As long as you’re interested in it and you have some questions or comments, I’d like to talk to you.

Ray

Feb 21, 2016

This is a short, special call to action session where I’m going to ask you for a favor.

Whether you’ve been listening to this podcast with the possibility of one day starting this business, or whether you followed along and actually started your business, step by step, OR whether you’re already an established dog walker and pet sitter who’s looking to hear what another dog walker has to say, I’d love to hear from you.

Send an email to dogwalkerpodcast@gmail.com and let me know a little bit about yourself … whether you’re an established dog walker; whether you’re still thinking about it … whether you have specific questions. Let me know whether you have Skype or ooVoo.
Feb 17, 2016

Session 11 – Sales

 

Sales is the process of convincing those people who know about your business through your marketing, to hire you.

 

Sales Literature:

+ Who Am I – A brief description of yourself

+ Services Offered – Discussion of your services and their prices

+ FAQs – Facts about your services and your business

 

Closing a sale is the process of getting a Prospect to agree to pay for your services and become your Customer.

 

Sales Principles

Customers will always make decisions based on their self-interest.

Customers prefer a good deal over a fair deal.

 

When making your presentation, explain, educate and answer questions.

 

The Presumptive Sales Technique pushes the meeting closer to an agreement by having you talk to your prospect as if he was already your customer.

 

Another principle of Sales is that you have to CLOSE a prospect at least THREE times, meaning that you have to ask for the job at least THREE times before it registers with the prospect.

 

If the Presumptive Sales Technique fails, Close your prospect by Asking for the Job.

 

Don’t fear rejection … remember, it’s not personal if it comes; it’s just business, and even if you do your presentations correctly, you will loose a few jobs.

 

Advanced Sales Techniques:

+ MIRROR your prospect’s speech tempo; do NOT imitate your prospects dialect or accent.

+ Include both parties in your presentation.

+ Determine who the dominant person in the decision-making team is by placing your business card equidistant between both parties. The dominant person will pick up the card.

+ Determine if your prospect is an A-Type or B-Type Person and adjust your presentation accordingly

          ++ A-Type wants the Big Picture; just the facts, please

          ++ B-Type wants all the facts; detail oriented

 

Preparing for your Meet-And-Greet:

+ DO NOT BE LATE; arrive 3 to 5 minutes early

+ Memorize your prospect’s name as well as that of the pet

+ Dress appropriately; clean dog walking attire

+ Wear Clean Shoes

+ Pull the prospect towards you by stepping backwards as the door opens

+ Pay attention to the pet

+ Bring treats for the pet; ask first

+ Take notes

+ After the Meet-And-Greet, immediate email a Thank You note.

 

Good luck!

Jan 29, 2016

In this session of How To Start and Manage a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business, I’m going to introduce you to the very important topic of Marketing.
 
Marketing is the process of letting the buying public … potentially your customers … know that you’re in business as well as what your business is all about.

I recommend that you sign up with www.thumbtack.com.

Go to https://www.craigslist.org/about/sites#US and find the particular craigs list that is closest to you.

For quality printing at a reasonable price go to www.vistaprint.com

Start a free website with Blogger at www.blogger.com

Keep sending me your questions and comments to  dogwalkerpodcast@gmail.com or go to the dogwalkerpodcast facebook page at www.facebook.com/dogwalkerpodcast and leave your comments or questions there.

 

Jan 11, 2016

In this session of How To Start and Manage a Dog Walking and Pet Sitting Business, I'm going to talk to you about book keeping and accounting.

1. Daily Service Calls

Service Calendar

 

 

Monday, January 04, 2016

9:00 AM

Customer 1 (M-F)

 

9:45 AM

Customer 2 (M-F)

 

10:30 AM

Customer 3 (M, W, F)

 

11:15 AM

Customer 4 (M-F)

 

1:00 PM

Customer 5 (Tu, Th)

 

 

 

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

9:00 AM

Customer 1 (M-F)

 

9:45 AM

Customer 2 (M-F)

 

11:15 AM

Customer 4 (M-F)

 

1:00 PM

Customer 5 (Tu, Th)

 

 

 

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

9:00 AM

Customer 1 (M-F)

 

9:45 AM

Customer 2 (M-F)

 

10:30 AM

Customer 3 (M, W, F)

 

11:15 AM

Customer 4 (M-F)

 

 

 

Thursday, January 07, 2016

9:00 AM

Customer 1 (M-F)

 

9:45 AM

Customer 2 (M-F)

 

1:00 PM

Customer 5 (Tu, Th)

 

 

 

Friday, January 08, 2016

9:00 AM

Customer 1 (M-F)

 

9:45 AM

Customer 2 (M-F)

 

10:30 AM

Customer 3 (M, W, F)

 

11:15 AM

Customer 4 (M-F)

 

2. Customer Payments

 

Client

Rec'vd

Check #

Amount

Tot Earn

Jan

Customer 1

01/04/16

#2778

$100.00

$100.00

 

Customer 2

01/04/16

#2031

$100.00

$200.00

 

Customer 3

01/04/16

#154

$60.00

$260.00

 

Customer 4

01/04/16

#1713

$100.00

$360.00

 

Customer 5

01/04/16

#3654

$40.00

$400.00

 

 

Balance Forward

$0.00

 

 

 

Ch # 2778

$100.00

 

Fee

Customer 1 (M-F)

Total Credit

$100.00

 

$20.00

 

Monday, January 11, 2016

$80.00

$20.00

 

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

$60.00

$20.00

 

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

$40.00

 

$20.00

 

Thursday, January 14, 2016

$20.00

 

$20.00

 

Friday, January 15, 2016

$0.00

 

$20.00

 

3. Running Totals of Customer Payments

Client

2016 Cum

Customer 1

$100.00

Customer 2

$100.00

Customer 3

$60.00

Customer 4

$100.00

Customer 5

$40.00

 

Then next time Customer 1 pays you another $100 for the following week’s of walks, add that $100 to the existing $100 to make it $200 in the 2016 Cum (for Cumulative) column. Do that for every customer and you’ll see how much each one of your customers pays you over time.

 

4. Monthly Income

 

Jan (1)

Feb (2)

Mar (3)

Apr (4)

May (5)

Jun (6)

Sub-Total

2016

$400.00

 

 

 

 

 

$400.00

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jul (7)

Aug (8)

Sep (9)

Oct (10)

Nov (11)

Dec (12)

Total

2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

$400.00

 

Using our example of 5 customers who pay you a total of $400 per month, you can use this simple set-up to track your monthly income as well as your 6-month midpoint income as well as your annual income. As your business grows, your monthly income will grow along with it.

 

5. Running Total Income and Tax burden

Tot Earn

32% Taxes

Taxes

$100.00

$32.00

$32.00

$200.00

$32.00

$32.00

$260.00

$19.20

$51.20

$360.00

$32.00

$83.20

$400.00

$12.80

$96.00

 

These cells should be added at the end of the cells of 2. Customer Payments above. I’m using the formula that you will have to pay around 32% of your income to State and Federal tax agencies. This will allow you to set aside in your savings account the amount of money that you should pay quarterly. If you pay your taxes on April 15, the IRS will charge you an interest rate for not having paid your quarterly taxes on time. 6. Expenses by Category

 

Expenses

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Date

Vendor

Purpose

Account

Amount

Sls Tax

Totals

1/4/2016

Vendor 1

2 leashes

20b Equip

$25.00

$1.50

$26.50

1/6/2016

Vendor 2

Off Supplies

18 Off Supp

$43.64

$2.62

$46.26

In this example I’m noting that I’ve made two business expenditures. I’ve noted the actual amounts with a separate notation for the Sales Tax which you’ll be able to deduct from your income taxes. Note that I’ve used the IRS 1040, Schedule C designations in the Account column, namely 20b and 18. You can do this if you have a Schedule C in your files for a reference. This will make it easier at tax time to itemize your deductions. You’ll add up all of your #20b expenses and then your #18 expenses as well as all of your other expenses and include those sums in your Schedule C. It’s much simpler than it sounds, really! 

Internet sources cited in this session …

dogwalkerpodcast@gmail.com

www.facebook.com/dogwalkerpodcast

Google “free basic accounting and bookkeeping courses online

https://www.irs.gov/

http://www.gnucash.org/

www.turbotax.com/

 

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