Dream of working with animals for a living? You’re in luck, because there are all sorts of pet business ideas out there. Let’s take a look at 22 possible career paths you can pursue right away!
Is Starting a Pet Business Profitable?
First thing’s first: you need to know whether this endeavor will actually be worth your time. After all, if your efforts won’t lead to results (or a livable income), it could still make for a great passion project – but not so much a realistic, full-time job.
The good news is, you can absolutely make a great profit off of starting your very own pet business! The key is how much work you’re willing to put into it.
Like with starting any business, it’s important to keep in mind that it’ll take time to make the profit you’re looking for. When first launching your business, you’ll be an unknown name in the industry. This means it’ll be up to you to get it off the ground, promote yourself, gain in-field experience, and attract clientele.
Furthermore, you’ll need to be good at budgeting. There are many overhead costs that come with running your own business, and improper investments could wind up draining more money than you’re making. This is why, to give you the best chances of success, we strongly recommend getting some form of business training before you jump straight into opening up shop.
In a nutshell: if you’re someone who lacks motivation and self-discipline, these goals will be difficult to achieve. However, if you know that you’d be willing to do whatever it takes to make your dreams a reality, then starting a pet business is the perfect option for you… and it can definitely become extremely profitable!
22 Pet Business Ideas You Can Pursue
So, what possible career paths are out there for you? Let’s take a look!
1. Pet Grooming
As a professional groomer, you’ll help pets look their absolute best! You’ll be responsible for everything from clipping nails, to giving baths, to doing haircuts, to treating skin conditions, to deshedding and de-matting coats, and SO much more.
Moreover, there are tons of specializations and niches within this particular career path. For instance, you can:
- Work in a grooming salon;
- Own your own salon;
- Start a mobile grooming business;
- Work as a freelance groomer;
- Specialize in grooming for dogs, cats, etc.;
- Specialize in competition grooming;
- Target your grooming services for animals in need (i.e. at shelters);
- And more!
2. Dog Walking
When lockdowns were in full effect, dog owners had the privilege of being at home with their furry family members on a daily basis. But now that life is returning back to normal, more people are no longer working from home. As such, they need someone to help take their dogs out for walks while they’re gone.
This is where you can come in! As a professional dog walker, you can arrange the best days and times to come pick up your clients’ dogs, provide them with some exercise and socialization, and give them a much-needed potty break. This job can be extremely flexible (if you would prefer to only work certain days and/or between certain times), or you can book as often as you want.
There will always be dog owners who need this service, so the high demand will NEVER be going anywhere!
Pro Tip: Want to gain some experience first and/or build your clientele BEFORE starting an actual dog walking business? There are plenty of apps out there that can get you regular work in this field, such as Rover.
3. Pet Sitting
The nice thing about pet sitting services is that they can be as broad or as narrow as you want them to be. For instance, you could offer to watch your clients’ pets at your own home or within theirs. Additionally, you could strictly offer to sit during the day, on weekdays, or on weekends.
On the other hand, if you wanted to make this your full-time career, you could offer to pet sit 7 days a week, at any hour of the day, as well as overnight.
As a rule of thumb, the more options you can offer pet owners, the better your chances will be at getting bookings. But if this is something you’d rather do part-time, or paired with another pet business, the flexibility is also there to fit your sitting services within your preferred schedule.
4. Pet Photography
If you’re good with a camera, perhaps the perfect pet business ideas for you is to take pictures of animals for a living! There are all sorts of reasons why clients seek out pet photographers, such as:
- Holiday-themed photoshoots (i.e. Christmas cards);
- Animal marketing ads;
- Family portraits;
- Photos of shelter animals, to help increase their chances of adoption, etc.;
- End-of-life memories;
- Pet portraits for special occasions (i.e. a birthday present);
- And more!
5. Handmade Clothing and Accessories
When it comes to pet owners, there’s a market out there for everything – and that includes the demographic who like to dress up their pets! As a maker of homemade animal clothing, you can create anything from casual attire (e.g. shirts, pajamas, etc.) to holiday-specific clothing (e.g. Halloween costumes, Christmas clothes, etc.).
Moreover, you can choose to specialize in clothing for certain breeds and/or sizes, or tailor your services to any dog, regardless of size. Plus, if your business were to offer custom orders for clients, this could also be a major selling point!
6. Organic Pet Treats
These days, there are more pet treats out there than you could shake a stick at. But many contain unwanted additives and questionable ingredients. For owners who prefer to feed their pets organic, natural diets, these types of foods are therefore off limits.
This also means that these animal owners are likely on the lookout for a healthy, homemade alternative!
So, if you enjoy baking and working with food, why not use your skills to offer the yummiest, healthiest treats on the market? This blog article offers 7 ideas to get the ball rolling. From there, use your imagination and creativity to whip up the types of treats YOU would want to feed your own pet… and then offer them to the world!
7. Handmade Toys
Some people have a natural knack for DIY projects and handy work. If you fall into this category, then perhaps the perfect pet business idea for you is to handmake toys for a living!
This particular job path also provides ample room to get creative, as the toys you create can be of any size, shape, color, or theme you want them to be. Not to mention, if you make toys for different varieties of pets (i.e. dogs, cats, rabbits, ferrets, hamsters, rats, etc.), you’ll be able to cater to a much larger clientele.
Moreover, you can even take your business one step further by creating handmade toys for exotic pets, too. There are plenty of people with post-bellied pigs, sugar gliders, etc. who may find it trickier to shop for toys for their unique pet. Since the options are more limited, your business could be the very thing they’ve been looking for!
8. Dog Training
You’re probably familiar with the saying, “It’s never to late to teach an old dog new tricks”.
This train of thought can be applied to all dogs of any age. New dog owners may need some expert help with training their young puppy. Others may have adopted an older dog with behavioral issues that need correcting. Whatever the reason may be, this is a career path with a high demand and many different types of clientele.
If you’re patient, have good communication skills, and possess a way with dogs of all temperaments, starting your very own dog training business could be the most rewarding option out there for you.
Did you know that QC Pet Studies is releasing a self-paced, online Dog Training Course in the coming months? It’s true! Make sure to stay tuned for more details, so you can enroll in this certification course the moment it launches!
9. Pet Daycare
This career path is similar to pet sitting, with a few important changes. With pet sitting, you could be watching one animal at a time, or one client’s pets. When you have your own pet daycare, you’ll likely be babysitting multiple pets for multiple clients at the same time.
If you excel at multi-tasking, have ideas for how to fill the days and keep all these animals occupied, and would love nothing more than to be surrounded by dogs and/or cats every day, then this is DEFINITELY the pet business idea for you!
Pro Tip: If you don’t have any prior experience watching over a handful of animals at once, perhaps starting as a sitter would be the best choice. That would allow you to dip your toes in the water and hone your skills; preparing you to look after more animals once you progress to opening up your own daycare.
10. Pet Boarding
Kennels can be extremely expensive, especially if owners need to go out of town for an extended length of time. For those on a budget, this can make such an option unaffordable. By starting your own pet boarding business, you can corner this market and attract a LOT of interested clients!
This type of career endeavor would likely require an investment on your part, as you’d more than likely need to own your own facility in order to safely, properly, and legally board the animals. The one tricky thing to keep in mind is that there are zoning laws to consider.
If interested in this pet business idea our recommendation would be to first research your local laws and legislations. If zoning restrictions or bylaws that’ll prevent you from pursuing this career path, it’s better to know that sooner rather than later.
11. Animal Blogger/Writer
Do you love to write? If so, another pet business idea is to start your very own animal blog! You can take this one step further by also lending your writing skills and expert insights to other businesses’ blogs and publications.
Freelance writing can be an awesome way to make a decent income – especially since you can set your own rates. The more your work is published, the more clients you can secure going forward. On the other hand, if you’d prefer to write strictly for your own blog, this would be a idea best paired with an additional business service.
Not sure how to develop your own blog? This article will teach you everything you need to know to get started!
13. Pet Training for Film and Television
Earlier, we took a look at dog training services for pet owners. However, there’s another similar business you can start for yourself, which specializes in pet training for the media.
Off the top of your head, can you count how many times you’ve seen an animal in a movie, on TV, or in a commercial? Probably not, since it’s a pretty regular thing. Well, someone is responsible for training these animals for the big (and small) screen – and that someone could be YOU!
Again, this is the type of advanced job where previous experience would do you a world of good. So, maybe start your career as a professional trainer by working with pet owners, and then move higher up the ladder to work with all those furry movie stars.
14. Pet Product Tester
Before animal food, accessories, toys, grooming tools, etc. can be released to the general public, they first need to be tested. After all, how else will these brands know if their products are truly effective?
Your pet business can be geared entirely towards helping these other businesses iron out their merchandise before they hit the shelves. For obvious reasons, we encourage you to have your own pet if you want to pursue this career path. Just make sure that whatever you’re testing out on your animal doesn’t put them in harm’s way!
15. Open Your Own Pet Store
While there are all sorts of mega chains out there, many animal owners prefer to shop for their pet’s essentials a little more close to home. By that, I mean locally, with store owners they can meet and get to know face-to-face.
It goes without saying that in order to open your own pet store, you’ll need to be willing to invest in this endeavor. After all, you’ll need to secure a location and then stock it up with products. That said, if the demand is high where you live, and you strategically tailor your shop to meet the demographic’s needs, this could be a very fruitful prospect for you!
16. Pet Massage Therapy
Humans aren’t the only ones that need some R&R! Animals, too, can experience bone, muscle, and/or joint issues that could greatly benefit from professional massage therapy. You could even expand on this business by offering additional complementary services, such as hydrotherapy, acupuncture, and homeopathy therapy.
Obviously, this is the sort of career path that requires ample training and education first. If you’re already experienced in massage therapy (as well as any of the added services mentioned above) and have been looking for something new, this pet business idea might just be what you’ve been looking for. Otherwise, if you’re brand-new to the concept, you’ll need to put some time and money into your certification training first.
17. Poop Scooping
I know, it’s not the most luxurious of jobs – but it needs to be done! This is a pet business idea that can easily be paired with a dog walking career. That said, it doesn’t have to be either.
All you’ll need in order to operate a poop scooping business are shovels, gloves, waste containers, a vehicle (so you can transport the waste), and somewhere you’re allowed to legally dispose of the poop.
In terms of demand, you could offer your services to any of the following clientele:
- Pet owners who need their yards cleaned up;
- Dog walking clients;
- Dog parks;
- Veterinary clinics;
- Kennels/boarding facilities;
- Grooming salons;
- Pet daycares, etc.
18. Travel Agent for Pets
This one might sound a little silly, but hear me out. There are an abundance of reasons why an animal may need to be transported by plane, train, boat, or what-have-you. For instance, they may have been adopted and need to be shipped in from another country. Their owner(s) may be moving or going on vacation, and they’re coming along for the adventure.
This is where a pet travel agent comes in handy. You could help individual clients and organizations alike safely and legally get the animals from Point A to Point B. This could include handling the animal’s documentation, securing the method by which they’ll be traveling, schedule their departure and arrival, aid in making the journey as stress-free as possible, etc.
19. Social Media Manager for Pet Celebrities
Doug the Pug, Pudgy the Chihuahua, Juniper the Fox, Jill the Squirrel… These are just some of the countless animals that have gone viral and gained a mass following on social media. And while the social media accounts for a lot of these animals is run by their owners themselves, some are run by skilled social media professionals.
This is where you and your pet business can come in! If you know how to manage and run a thriving social media channel, your services could come in handy for owners who have a famous pet – but not as much time to spend online every day.
20. Social Media Personality and Pet Expert
Speaking of social media, another pet business idea is to make a big name for yourself online! As we discussed earlier, you could run your own blog – but there are tons of other things you can do to build on this, too.
For instance, you could start a YouTube channel and/or TikTok account. You could grow a huge following on Instagram, Twitter, and/or Facebook. You could even attract followers on platforms such as Pinterest, or start a podcast.
With the right strategies, persistence, and unique content, you could become the next big face in terms of popular pet personalities!
21. Pet Food
Earlier, we talked about how you could build a pet business around making homemade treats. But if you wanted to take this one step further, why not branch out and make homemade pet food in general?
There’s no shortage of people out there who prefer to feed their pets all-natural diets, from trusted sources. By keeping your homemade pet food organic, and containing only natural ingredients, you could make quite the name for yourself in this popular corner of the industry!
22. Open Your Own Cat Café
Seriously, is there anything better than enjoying a nice, hot coffee while being surrounded by adorable cats? Cat cafés have become wildly popular over the last decade or so, as many consider them to be the BEST hangout spots. Having been to several myself, I can confirm that this sentiment is 100% true.
Keep in mind that you’ll need to invest in a commercial property for your café’s location, as well as any applicable licenses your local area requires in order for you to run this establishment. However, once you have everything up and running, it won’t take long for your business to take off and start turning a nice profit!
Plus, this particular job path offers an incredible opportunity to make real change in these animals’ lives. Although you can work independently, you could also pair up with animal shelters as well. This way, the cats hanging around in your café are adoptable ones; provided with the special opportunity of finding their forever homes when they meet your clients.
Talk about a win-win situation!
What’s The Best Pet Business Idea to Start?
Ultimately, the pet business idea that speaks loudest to YOU will depend on your own passions and goals. Just remember that as we discussed earlier, it’s critical that you get yourself some business training, regardless of which plan you decide to pursue.
At QC Pet Studies, our self-paced, online Dog Grooming Course comes with an entire unit devoted to business training! So, if dog grooming is a career you’d be interested in, you can rest easy knowing that in addition to learning how to groom, you’ll also be taught everything you need to know to launch AND run a thriving business.
That said, the knowledge and skills taught in the business unit can be applied to ANY pet business idea you wish to pursue! For example, you’ll discover how to:
- Name your business and get it legally registered;
- Build your business’s brand;
- Develop your official website;
- Build your professional portfolio;
- Attract and retain clients;
- Implement proper marketing strategies;
- Provide exceptional customer service each and every time;
- And SO much more!
So, do you know what sort of pet business YOU want to open? Let us know in the comments below!