By Tim Falk
Published: 09/07/2022, edited: 09/07/2022
Wag! makes starting your own pet sitting business easy. Whether you’re sitting as a side hustle or looking to make a living as an in-home pet sitter, Wag! offers everything you need to turn your passion for pets into a source of income.
But getting started as a sitter can be a daunting task. With so many other 5-star Pet Caregivers on Wag!, how can you stand out from the crowd? What can you do to increase your appeal to Pet Parents searching for a “furbulous” dog sitter?
The good news is that there are plenty of simple things you can do to get more clients and boost your dog sitting biz. Keep reading to find out what they are.
The first step to attracting more dog sitting clients is to write a “pawsome” profile bio. So instead of just jotting down the first couple of sentences that come into your head, take some time to craft an interesting and informative bio.
Pet Parents need to be able to trust you to look after their fur-baby, and to welcome you into their home, so put some thought into it. Tell them who you are, what qualifications and skills you have, and why you’re the best person to pamper their pet.
It’s also a good idea to provide details of the services you offer to make every doggy sleepover extra special. Maybe you’re a belly rub expert, maybe you bake the best homemade dog treats, or maybe your active lifestyle makes you the “pawfect” match for high-energy dogs. Whatever your superpower is, don’t be shy about sharing it.
Find out more in our guide to writing a Wag! profile bio that wins clients.
Pet Parents want high-quality pet care, but they want it at an affordable price. When setting your dog sitting rate, it’s all about finding the sweet spot with a nightly rate that’s reasonable for the average Pet Parent, but that makes sitting worth your while at the same time.
The price you set will vary depending on factors like:
On average, dog sitters with Wag! set their rates in the $39–$59 range for an overnight stay for 1 dog. Research the top Pet Caregivers near you to find out how much they charge. For more information on setting your rates, check out our guide on how much you should charge for dog sitting services on Wag!.
Becoming a dog or cat sitter isn’t just about being a pet person; you also need to be a people person. In particular, you need to be a great communicator, both verbally and in written form.
So be polite and friendly, and be clear with Pet Parents so they know exactly what services you provide. It’s also important to provide detailed information about what pets get up to while staying with you, and send photo and video updates so Pet Parents can get their “cuteness fix” while they’re away from their pup.
Remember: good customer service also goes a long way toward becoming a successful sitter, so be prepared to focus on Pet Parents' needs as well as their dogs'.
Find more tips in our “ultimutt” guide to being a well-prepared dog sitter.
Growing your client base isn’t just a case of “build it and they will come.” Instead, you need to get out there and spread the word about your dog sitting services.
The good news is that there are myriad ways to promote your business. Start by promoting your Wag! profile on your social media channels — all you have to do is open the Wag! Pet Caregiver app, go to the main menu, tap “Profile”, and then “Promote”.
You can also create a Google My Business profile, print and hand out flyers in your neighborhood, or even look into online advertising. Even just chatting to other Pet Parents at your local dog park is an easy and effective way to get your name out there.
Check out our guide to promoting your business through Wag! for more great tips.
Put yourself in the shoes of a Pet Parent for a second: What would you look for in a pet sitter? What special skills could a sitter have that would make you feel more comfortable about leaving your fur-baby in their care?
For most of us, the health and wellbeing of our dogs and cats is paramount, so finding a sitter with pet first aid skills is a big plus. With this in mind, adding a pet first aid training qualification to your resume can only boost your appeal.
Of course, it’s far from the only qualification that will help you stand out from the crowd. From learning the basics of dog training or completing a course in safe animal handling, to logging hours volunteering at an animal shelter, there’s plenty you can do to boost your pet care knowledge.
Another simple way you can build a bigger client base is to add more strings to your bow. If you add more pet care services to your profile — like dog walking, training, drop-in visits, or boarding in your home — you’ll stand out to a much wider range of Pet Parents.
Not only will this keep your income ticking over, but it’ll also mean more 5-star reviews on your profile, more badges earned for services completed, and hopefully repeat clients who will seek you out when they need a sitter.
This might be the last item on our list of ways to get more dog sitting clients on Wag!, but it’s also the most important. Quite simply, the best way to become an in-demand sitter is to be great at what you do.
So go out of your way to offer 5-star care to pups of all shapes and sizes. That means offering lots of love and cuddles, and making sure all of your canine clients’ needs are met. When you treat a dog to a sensational sleepover, they’ll be sure to invite you back again.
Remember: a happy dog means a happy Pet Parent, a repeat client, and a 5-star review!
To find out more about what it takes to be a great dog sitter, meet 5 of the top pet sitters on the Wag! app and learn the secrets to their success.
Our 10 tips on what to take to a dog sitting session will also help you make a great first impression.
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