Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, dog ownership has skyrocketed. There are now over 13 million pet dogs living in the UK – an increase of at least 44% since 2019. With more dogs to care for, there’s a competitive market for services aimed at helping these pets and their owners.
If you’re considering starting a dog kennel business, you could be tapping into one of the most lucrative markets for 2023. With the right premises secured, there are a few crucial things to bear in mind.
Does the UK need more boarding kennels?
At least one in four UK adults owns a dog. However, the number of dog-friendly holiday destinations can’t accommodate the number of dog-owning families. Additionally, some couples and families prefer to go abroad and leave the dog behind with a trusted kennel or dogsitter, allowing them a little bit more flexibility and freedom.
As more of us are travelling abroad post-pandemic, it’s expected that there will be continued growth in the market for boarding kennels.
What does running dog boarding kennels involve?
To own and manage kennels successfully demands a lot of responsibility. You’ll need to be active and enthusiastic, willing to get stuck in with feeding and exercising the dogs from the early morning until the evening.
A kennel business might also offer day-care for working professionals, grooming services, and a contained outdoor exercise area for training and playtime. To get started, you’ll need to:
- Choose your target market
When you’re setting up a boarding facility, you’ll need to think about your local target market. Setting up on the outskirts of a town or city could be a sensible approach. From that point, you should consider the budget of your target market too.
- Create a sturdy business plan
When you set up a business, you’ll need to be as organised as possible. You’ll need to think about your setup and whether you’d like to provide standard kennels, luxury kennels, or a smaller ‘hotel’ setup in your own home.
Additionally, it might be worth thinking about taking out a business insurance policy. This type of cover could potentially protect you against unforeseen problems.
- Do your research
If you’ve been trusted to take responsibility for dogs, you’ll need to know how to provide quality care. Learning about common illnesses, including kennel cough, could help you to arrange the appropriate care if a dog falls ill while staying with you.
- Invest in security
Not all dogs have excellent recall training.
If you haven’t installed a tall fence or an alternative boundary for your kennel facility, the worst-case scenario event might occur. To prevent dogs from escaping or running away, you need to make sure that your kennels are secure.
CCTV cameras should help owners to feel more comfortable leaving their dog at your kennel.
Lastly, positive customer feedback is a significant factor in encouraging prospective customers to choose your business. Try to keep owners updated with cute photos throughout the stay, and once they come to collect their dog, be confident in asking for a review.