Q&A: Does Barking Mad Franchise in the UK?

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Barking Mad franchise information

If you’ve always dreamed of working with animals, why not start a pet business? Dog daycare companies are just one of your options, offering flexible working hours and an active lifestyle. Here, we’re looking at one particular business; does Barking Mad franchise?


Barking Mad offers luxury pet care, but rather than providing dog kennels, it works with individuals who open up their home to animals from one household at a time. This approach helps make sure dogs get all the love and attention they deserve and never feel overwhelmed. 

Does Barking Mad franchise? 

Yes! If you’re interested in working with dogs and earning a stable income, Barking Mad could be the perfect franchise for you. 

History of Barking Mad

The Barking Mad story began back in 1999, when its founder, Lee Dancy, became the owner of a dalmatian called Bronte. When she started looking into dog daycare services, she realised there was a noticeable lack of alternatives to traditional kennels. 

The following year, Lee founded Barking Mad in Kirkby Lonsdale, Cumbria, and it quickly became popular among locals. Within 12 months, she was exploring the franchise model as a means of expansion, and after another year and a half, her Barking Mad franchise opportunity was ready for launch. 

Now, the franchise has completed more than 80,000 successful dog-sitting holidays and been recognised in several high-profile marketing slots, including interviews with Chris Evans, News Night and The Guardian. 


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Pet owners can be sure their dog is properly cared for when they use the Barking Mad home boarding service. They can enjoy their time away, safe in the knowledge their canine companion is having its very own holiday in the comfort of a dog-lover’s home. Hosts are on-call 24 hours a day, and ready to take dogs to their usual vet if they need specialist attention. 

In the UK, there are around nine million dogs, and 24 percent of all households now own one, according to the latest PFMA statistics. As a result, there’s a huge marketplace for Barking Mad franchisees, with a high number of potential customers in any region. 

We’ve seen lives change beyond all recognition for those who’ve joined our business to become Barking Mad franchise owners. The support team at our head office has grown beyond all recognition and we were delighted to become part of the Franchise Brands group plc in 2016, which is taking Barking Mad to bigger and better places.
‒ Lee Dancy, Founder

Starting your own Barking Mad franchise unit

Barking Mad is a ‘cash flow positive’ business, as customers pay in advance, and you’ll be able to work from home to minimise overheads. There’s no such thing as a ‘typical franchisee’ or a ‘typical day’, so life is never boring at Barking Mad. 

If you have a passion for working with animals, great communication skills and the ambition to develop a successful business, Barking Mad wants to hear from you. 

Becoming a Barking Mad franchisee: 

To start the process of joining the Barking Mad franchise, you can register your interest at Point Franchise or on the business’s own website. Once you’ve taken this first step, you’ll receive a franchise prospectus with additional information. 

Then, you can arrange a time to meet the Barking Mad franchise team at their headquarters, where you’ll be taken through the business model. You’ll have the chance to ask any questions you may have and learn more about the benefits of becoming a franchisee.  

Barking Mad is a national franchise, so you should be able to get in touch with a franchisee nearby to find out more about the lifestyle you can expect to enjoy once you invest. 

Before you can get up and running, you’ll need to buy a silver-grey vehicle. It should be less than five years old and able to transport dogs safely. The vehicle will display the Barking Mad brand, local phone number and web address, so you’ll always be promoting your franchise business. A home office complete with a telephone line and computer is also essential.

How much you need to invest: 

You should be prepared to invest a total of £14,995 to set up your Barking Mad franchise unit. This payment includes the franchise licence fee, a training programme and bespoke FIDO software. It also covers your equipment, corporate apparel valued at £182, marketing material worth £800 and £75 worth of dog tags. 

On top of this fee, you may need to pay £410 for vehicle livery, and annual business insurance premiums of £350, payable in monthly instalments.

Instead of projections, Barking Mad provides prospective investors with detailed financial information based on up-to-date trading performance, so you can create a solid budget and plan. 

What you get for your investment:

Once you’re ready to become a Barking Mad franchise owner, you’ll attend a five-day training programme covering everything from dog behaviour to financial accounts. After your initial coaching, the franchise guides you through the first six months of your business operations and delivers ongoing support. 

Barking Mad promotes your business on your behalf for the first few weeks, and the franchise team will even send out marketing materials to your local press. Once you’re up and running, you’ll never have to miss a call if you’re just about to leave the office or out and about. The franchise has a dedicated team to deal with inbound calls for you, 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday.


Join a dog daycare franchise

Running your own business doesn’t have to be a distant dream if you join forces with a franchise. The existing company will support you as you launch your unit, helping you sidestep common issues and establish a loyal customer base. 

Browse our current franchise opportunities in the dog daycare sector, or browse our complete list of pet businesses looking for new franchisees

>> Read more articles on the Dog Day Care sector

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