With 38% of Australian homes having a dog as a pet, dog training services are all the range.
At one point or another, pet owners, law enforcement agencies, dog rescue centres and people with certain health conditions seek out dog training services.
If you love these furry friends and have a flair for business, you might be interested in running a dog training business.
Here is how to get started.
1. Master the In’s and Out’s
Having in-depth knowledge of your industry has many advantages.
Key among them is having access to connections that can support your business growth. Becoming a certified dog trainer is a great place to start.
Getting certification adds more credibility to your business. Again, as your business grows, you might have to hire a team of trainers to help with the workload.
Being a certified trainer will help you make better hiring decisions, troubleshoot problems and put you in a better position to lead your team.
2. Gain Experience
Formal training is important, but it never tramps hands-on skill acquisition.
Successful dog trainers have experience handling dogs in various capacities. This is useful because it gives you a firm understanding of dog behaviours which is pivotal in dog training.
Look for employment and apprenticeships with other dog training institutions, dog groomers, daycares, show handlers, and so on.
These hands-on skills, coupled with your certification, will eventually earn you your first client and many others after that.
3. Meet Required Stipulations
Thoroughly research on what you are required to do to set up a business in your jurisdiction.
This includes permits, insurance policies, business license, a business account, and so on.
Most small businesses are registered as sole-proprietorships, although you can also register as a Limited Liability Company (LLC) or a partnership.
Fortunately, this business has minimal capital requirements and overheads.
Most activities will be carried out in the dog owner’s homes. So getting a physical office space is often unnecessary.
4. Marketing and Networking
With everything in place, your focus will be getting your first client.
Think about how you intend to market your services and which platforms best target your potential customers.
Initially, this will call for some legwork, but ultimately, you will get a lot of referrals through word of mouth.
Come up with a business name and logo to print on your business card and fliers. You can begin by requesting referrals from dog sitters, vets and dog walkers in your locality.
Request all customers to refer you to their friends as well. Also, explore social media marketing to reach a large number of people simultaneously and at low costs.
5. Get Organised
Starting out, you will be required to fill different functions.
You will be the marketer, accountant, administrator and dog trainer. The success of your business in the early stages will be largely independent on how well you can carry out these functions.
Allocate time for social media marketing, meet new clients, time to review your books and for administrative tasks as well.
To help you out, look into getting an online planner that allows you to schedule appointments and other business-related activities.
6. Keep at It
Starting a business is hardly ever a smooth ride.
Find motivation in the fact that you are well on your way to building a business based on your passion.
Again, ask for help when you need it and take breaks when you get overwhelmed. In time, these actions will help you build the most reputable dog training business in your locality- and beyond.