Yesterday, I got a dog. We named him “Peter’s Lucky Biscuit” and he is adorable. That’s him in the photo to the left. Biscuit is a pure bread labradoodle. We had to get a pure breed because we needed a hypoallergenic breed that would be more likely to be compatible with our son’s allergies.
We love our son and he has always wanted a dog. Indeed, he did all of the research on hypoallergenic breeds and made a very compelling case for getting either a doodle, a Portuguese Water Dog or, my favorite, a basenji. We loved every aspect of the labradoodles that we met, except the price tag. We met with two breeders and both told us the same price — $2500!
The breeders we met had one thing in common. Dog breeding was a “second job.” In each case, both the husband and wife had day jobs and the dogs were their second source of income. Both breeders also involved their children and turned breeding into a family activity — one that pays really well.
The breeder from whom we purchased our Biscuit has dogs who have had litters in each of March, April and May. She has already sold all of the puppies from the April and May litters — fourteen puppies at $2500 each. Admittedly there are some overhead costs for food, toys, veterinarian bills and stud fees, but a huge portion of that $2500 per animal is profit.
Our breeder told us that she and her husband sat down with their two daughters six years ago and had a family meeting. They considered whether this is something that they wanted to do together. They unanimously agreed that they did. They purchased two breeding doodles and did a lot of research. They have not looked back since. The younger daughter, now 13, is in charge of photography and the breeder’s website. The elder daughter, now 17, does a lot of the care giving for the puppies and she must do a good job of it — she just bought a new Volvo convertible with cash that she earned caring for puppies.
I’ve learned a lot about animals this month or two, some of it unpleasant, but most of it wonderful, and I have learned that there are a lot of ways to turn a love of animals, or at least an interest in them, into ways to make money. Here are a few animal businesses that you can operate from your home:
Become a Breeder
Whether you breed cats or dogs, there is money to be earned in raising healthy, pure breed animals. If you own your own home, you can certainly earn more than enough to pay your annual mortgage with one litter per year. Raising puppies can be a lot of work but it can also be amazingly rewarding. A window pet door and plenty of puppy potty training pads can be worthwhile investments as a breeder. Our breeder told us that the joy she gets from putting a puppy in a good home makes her feel wonderful for days, even though it is hard to see her “babies” leave her house.
Become a Groomer
In my community, there are several mobile pet groomers who will groom pets from a van in the owner’s driveway. She charges anywhere from $50 to $150 per hour depending on the services that are required. There are pet grooming schools in all 50 states. If you love animals and like to be out and about during the day, pet grooming is a great way to earn a living.
Become a Dog Walker
If you live in an urban area, many professionals do not have time to walk their dogs, especially on weekdays. Dog walkers can earn up to $30 per hour and sometimes even more. All you need is a means of traveling to the dogs and a way to advertise your services and you can set yourself up as a dog walker.
Become a Pet Sitter
When pet owners travel, they do not want to worry about their pets. Pet sitters will visit a pet regularly during the day, feed and water the animal, take the animal for walks, and generally look after the pet while the owner is unable to do so.
Become a Pet Chauffeur
Many pet owners, especially the elderly, are unable to take their pets to veterinary appointments or other appointments (and to be honest, I really cannot figure out what those “other” appointments might be). Pet chauffeurs are drivers who will take pets to those appointments so that the owner does not have to find a way to do so.
Are you an animal lover? Do you already work with animals? Do you have experience making money with animals?