Run A Pet Sitting Business Part Time

Got experience of caring for animals? Be a part time pet sitter.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that offering a pet sitting service is the same as house sitting. It’s not! To be credible pet sitter you need experience with pets and need to demonstrate a love for animals and a high level of common sense! Crucially being a pet sitter is an ideal part time business to bring in extra income. You can expect to earn between £6 and £10 per visit per day depending on the complexity of the needs of the animals you’re caring for. Many pet sitters start out by marking their services via veterinarians offices.

What tasks are involved in pet sitting?

As a pet sitter you will be responsible for caring for people’s much loved pets’ in their own homes. As an alternative to a cattery or kennel you are providing pet owners with peace of mind, knowing that their pets are being cared for while they are away. It’s well known that many cats and dogs (in particular) get upset if they have to stay at a kennel or cattery.
Some pet sitters specialise in particular pets i.e. offering a cat sitting service. Whether this appeals to you might depend on your own background of pet ownership. Other pet sitters offer additional services such as house sitting or grooming or shopping.

A pet sitting business can be very seasonal. However if you cultivate clients that travel all year round, perhaps for business, you can generate a regular part time income. It’s a feature of the pet sitting business that many clients are loyal to their pet sitter since good ones are hard to find.

Licensing and insurance

In the UK pet sitters do not need a license if they are caring for pets in the owner’s home. However some choose to be join organisations such as NarpsUK. If you are likely to pet sit for people outside your immediate friends and family circle you should investigate the different types of pet sitter insurance that are available to protect you if something goes wrong. Being CRB checked is important if you want potential customers to trust you.

Agency or go it alone?

Some pet sitters get all their work from agencies. However agencies may not be able to give you work close to home, making it a trickier option if you only plan to offer a pet sitting service part time.Don’t make the mistake of offering to keep other people’s pets in your own home as this requires a license from your local authority. Which you can apply for of course before you board any pets.

Finding customers

There are free marketing opportunities you shouldn’t miss out on such as leaving your business card at local vets and related businesses such as groomers. Everyone has to start somewhere so collect written references from your first customers. You don’t need a website to get up and running. This is a business where word-of-mouth is important and your first customers should lead to more. Pet sitting work is also done by people doing house sitting but you’d need to be based away from home and it can be hard finding paid work.

Resources

NarpsUK One of the UK’s leading Pet Sitting Membership organisations.
Pet Business Insurance Insurance for pet sitters
Animal Aunts One of the UK’s longest established pet sitter agencies
Well Established Pet Sitting Business Course One of a number of courses on setting up a pet sitting business