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Episode 163: How To Get Your Community To Know About Your Pet Sitting Business

Picture this… there’s a huge gala going on in your community. Everyone is dressed to the nines and it’s a very high ticket event. There are local celebrities there and while at dinner they’re talking about their pets, imagine if your company’s name came up.

Here’s another example, you’re in a local Facebook group and someone is about to go on vacation, but they forgot to book a pet sitter until the last minute. They were so focused on creating a great trip and their normal pet sitter isn’t available. They ask the group who they use for pet care, wouldn’t it be amazing if your company came up overwhelmingly in the comments?

What would you do if your entire community knew about your pet sitting or dog walking services? How would that change the face of your business? Today, I want to talk to you all about how to get your community to know about your business.

Biggest Takeaway You Don’t Want To Miss

Getting known has to do with getting clear on what you want to be known for. Often times this isn’t the facts or what you do, but it is how you do it that matters. There is no doubting the fact that our clients are on Facebook. Instagram is close behind. You want to be the thought leader or expert in your community, but if you have no unique presence online it’s going to be hard to accomplish. Each month you should be writing blogs, creating graphics and videos, sending emails, sharing IG stories, and more. That might seem overwhelming, but Better Marketing With Bella can actually provide those things for your business with your branding, ready to post each month.

Show Highlights

  • What is one of the biggest challenges for you and your business? [4:40]
  • What sets you apart from your competitors? [6:15]
  • How can you stand out on social media? [8:30]
  • What should you be posting each month? [11:40]
  • How can you use Better Marketing With Bella to help? [17:20]

 

Community

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    1. Click this link – Bella In Your Business
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Episode 161: Why Rover Is Beating The Professional Pet Sitter

I wanted to talk about something pretty controversial today. Our listeners are at a myriad of levels in the pet industry from buying multiple businesses all the way to people who are on Rover or Wag and wanting to start their own professional company. I want you to take this message to heart, no longer are we mom and pop companies plugging away. There is something very unique that is changing in this business. Specifically, I’m going to be talking about why Rover (or any other app or hobby sitter) is beating the professional pet sitter.

Biggest Takeaway You Don’t Want To Miss

The reason why Rover or Wag might get more sign-ups than a professional pet sitter is because they’re beating us at the automation game. Pet parents don’t even get to experience how great our services are because our entire intake ignores the user experience. The experience your customer has with your business before even meeting you is paramount. Speak exactly to your avatar on your website, if I can copy and paste your website onto someone else’s site, you are doing it wrong.

Show Highlights

  • Why do Rover sitters get more sign-ups? [2:55]
  • How can we avoid people from moving on to other sitters? [8:15]
  • What is the most important part of the sales process? [9:00]
  • How can the professional sitter win against Rover? [12:15]

Rover

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Share The Show

Did you enjoy the show? We would love it if you subscribed today and left us a 5-star review!

    1. Click this link – Bella In Your Business
    2. Click on the ‘Subscribe’ button below the artwork
    3. Go to the ‘Ratings and Reviews’ section
    4. Click on ‘Write a Review’

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is dog boarding in my home legal?

Is Dog Boarding In My Home Legal?

We have so many ways in this new instant economy to make money that businesses like dog boarding are sprouting up everywhere. To be honest and straightforward the answer to these questions isn’t a yes or a no.

The job of watching a pet while their parents are at work or out of town seems to be a job that anyone can do it. I have heard it all. Eight-year-old neighbor kids walking dogs, the person in between jobs, making some quick money to pay their electric bill by letting dogs come stay with her, and even some full blown businesses that have a bunch of hosts homes everywhere where the company sends the dogs to stay overnight.

prices on website

 

There Are Big Responsibilities When Considering Dog Boarding

In home dog boarding comes with some huge responsibilities both before they start their business and after. Although focusing on the cute and adorable dream of caring for the pets…sometimes it is neglected.  One of the biggest responsibilities is finding out if they are even allowed to have a dog boarding business in their own home. It is almost implied that if you can sign up for one of these easy to use websites like rover.com, care.com, dogvacay.com, etc that you very well can make money boarding dogs in your home.

But is it legal?

Think No One Will Find Out?

Sometimes I hear, “Aw, no one cares about me Bella. I am just making a little side money. What’s wrong with that?”

Ah! But people DO know. They find out through seeing different dogs and people come to and from your home. They find out by your website advertising and your facebook page that is posting pictures.

Your neighbors can hear the dogs, they can see the dogs, and sometimes… they can SMELL the dogs.

People know.

And what is worse, is some of the people who board dogs in their home might be building a business that isn’t sustainable.

All it takes is for one person to call the zoning board to have them come knocking on your door. They did this to Kristie Glazer in Philadelphia. A neighbor reported her and they literally knocked on her door ready to nail plyboard on her window frames and board up her home.

Can you believe that?!?!  You can hear the full story here

She had to stop that business and ultimately, made a huge dent in her families livelihood.

Facebook group

 

You Want To Do The Right Thing, Don’t You?

If you are going to go into business for yourself, don’t you want to know that you are doing the right thing? Don’t you want to go to bed at night knowing that you have proper training, insurance, structures, approvals, contingency plans?

If you don’t, something like what happened at Green Acres could happen and you could have 20+ dead dogs on your hands and criminal charges against you. Or what about these horrible cases that made the news:

  • Dog attacked at in home boarding
  • Dog Attacked and killed at in home dog boarding,no zoning.
  • Dog died sparked zoning investigation.zoning investigation.   The article states: “What we’re now discovering is all these boarding operations opening under the guise of pet-sitting,” said Animal Care and Control Director Dianne Sauve”

Yeah, this stuff is REAL.

You want to confidently tell your clients that your insurance covers you 100% for anything that happens.

You want to know how to properly introduce new dogs to your pack to avoid anyone getting bit in the face or have one of them injure another four legged client at your home. You want to know what happens if one gets out of an enclosure and damages your home or themselves while you are at the grocery store.

This is a very serious business.

Let’s Start With The First Check Mark You Need In Order To Be Up And Running:

Before you can even THINK of inviting dogs and cats into your home in exchange for money, you must look to see if it is even legal OR what you need to do to BE legal.

pet sitting employee manual

DO THIS: Contact City hall and ask if a special zoning license is needed to have a dog kennel in your residential house.

To show you what I mean, I took 30 minutes and googled for you. Here is what I came up with for some locations.

Los Angeles: You need a permit

San Diego –  7 or more pets

Ft Wayne Tx
Residential Kennel Permit $300
Commercial Kennel/Cattery Permit – (Requires Zoning Approval)
* 6-15 dogs/cats $150
* 16-25 dogs/cats $200
* 26 or more $250
* Omnibus Permit $200

Seattle/King County
4 + dogs or cats
Need permit

Minnesota Cities –Very long, you should read through it.

South Bend Indiana – Read Section 5-60

Maricopa County – $328 for a permit.

Utah – no more than 3 dogs in one home.

Louisville, KY – any boarding facility needs permit.

Fairfax County, VA – Depends on square footage

A great resource for looking up your local laws and ordinances is www.municode.com.

In the end, don’t you want to know that you are operating a legal business? Don’t you want to know that you have the proper insurance? That you won’t be fined? For some, it is a risk they are willing to take, but how moral is it to be operating (knowingly) and illegal business?

 

rover dogvacay insurance

No One Said It Is Easy.

In some places, you will do your best attempt and call City Hall but the person on the phone might not know. Or they might not have any laws. Some that do require laws and permits hardly ever have inspections so then all you see are the bad cases in the news when things go wrong.

As a professional pet care provider, let’s do all that we can to bring the integrity of our industry up by doing everything we need to do to operate legal businesses.

If you would like to help the integrity of this article and you locate the statute in your town or county, feel free to add it to the comments section and I will add it to the list above!

 

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make money rover dog sitter

Can I Make Money Working For Rover As A Dog Sitter?

With the popularity in a shared economy growing, the opportunity to make more money on the side has become increasingly popular. You can drive people around with Lyft and Uber, you can deliver for Amazon, you can clean people’s homes through Handy, and you can now be a pet sitter or board dogs in your home on apps like Rover, DogVacay, and Care.com But can you actually make money working for rover?

make money rover dog sitter

But Can You Make Money Working For Rover As A Dog Sitter?

The short answer, sure you can! Creating your profile takes about 15 minutes. Upload a few pictures, select the right price for your services and you are off to the races. According to the rover.com website, they take 15% of the fee that you charge and the rest of it is all yours!

Pretty neat if you love pets and want to make some money… yet not exactly have your own full blown company, right?

Maybe…

make money rover dog sitter

There Is A Lot Of Responsibility To Being A Pet Sitter

If you are considering making money working for rover as a dog sitter, or any of the other apps, then I encourage you to consider a few important details:

1. Is the liability insurance that comes with your membership to these sites enough to cover you? Think about what the coverage limits are and what the deductibles are. Will it have any influence on your home owner’s insurance?

2. What if you were to break up a dog fight that happened in your home and were so injured you couldn’t go to your day job? Who would pay for your lost wages?

3. What happens if one of the dogs you are watching destroys your property or the property in their home?

4. What are your city zoning laws? Are you even legally allowed to host dogs in your home for the exchange of money?

There is just so much that you, as an independent contractor, need to be aware of.

make money rover dog sitter

Look Before You Fall In Love

It is easy to fall into the romance of loving on pets all day and getting a paycheck. I mean, who wouldn’t want to? 🙂 It is a lovable, rewarding, and fun job. Truth be told, I made it my life for over 14 years when I had my company.

But in the end, we must remember that we are still caring for animals. They have an entirely different way of communicating than humans. 

 

Do You Know The Difference?

For example, did you know that if dogs approach nose to nose it is aggressive and if it is from the side it is friendly? I learned that a long time ago in one of the best Dog Behavior for Pet Sitter Manuals that are out on the market. The nuggets of info stored in there could be the difference between a calm day at the “home office” and a dog fight.

can-i-make-money-working-for-rover

So What Is the Final Answer?

In the end, the simple answer to your question, “Can I make money being a rover dog sitter?” is YES. You can. But equally important of a question is, “Do you fully understand the liability and risks you are assuming while doing so?”

Note: Where ever you see rover.com that can also mean dogvacay.com, care.com, Wag, etc.

 

rover dog sitter coaching

rover