Running your own pet sitting business puts you in the driving seat in a number of ways. You can decide where you will work, the breed and type of animals you are going to take on and what types of services you are willing to offer. However, one of the downsides of running a pet sitting business is earning an irregular income, especially when clients come and go. As a pet sitter, what can you do to drum up more trade when business is slow?
Speak to Existing Clients About Extra Work
One of the most obvious (but easily overlooked) ways of earning extra money as a pet sitter is by approaching existing clients and asking if they would like you to care for their cat or dog one or more extra days per week. If they cannot currently accommodate any extra pet-care costs into their budget, let them know you are available for occasional weekend care, house/pet sitting or other such services. Oftentimes, clients are surprised at the extra services you provide and will take you up on the offer whenever they need extra help with their pets.
Gaining extra work as a pet sitter can even come about by chance. With some previous clients, I started out by walking their dogs just a couple of times a week. But as their work/life balance became more hectic, I was in a position to step in by offering more dog walks each week. Not only did this increase my weekly income, but I was also able to help clients whose dogs required additional care.
Have you stopped posting advertisements in shop windows, on online forums or at vet practices because you are sometimes swamped with pet sitting jobs? If you stop advertising, then you could be in for a rude awakening when a client’s pet suddenly dies or a client moves away. Before you know it, you will be wishing you had kept advertising your pet sitting services. Continue to advertise. If you find that you are receiving responses from potential clients who live too far away, you can narrow down your catchment area so that you find clients who live in your town or within quick and easy commuting distance.
Pet sitting will have its occasional ups and downs, including weeks or months where you do not have a lot of clients on the books. Be persistent, patient and do not give up! Putting in the extra effort to ask for extra work from existing clients and advertising will boost your chances of replacing clients who have moved or no longer require your pet sitting services.
More from this contributor:
Pet Sitters: How Far Should You Travel?
Pet Sitters: What Kind of Records Should You Keep?
Pet Sitters: When and How to Increase Your Rates