Start A Pet Franchise

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Start A Pet Franchise

Gone are the days when pets are banished to the dog house. Animal-loving Brits are gradually evolving the relationship with their pets, depending on them for friendship and a sense of satisfaction from being loved unconditionally. People want their pets to feel loved, contented and mentally stimulated. This has led to a demand in products that add more value than your standard squeaky toy. Pet owners are prepared to pay for a range of grooming products, accessories and treats for their furry friends. With 8.5 million dogs and 7.5 million cats in the UK, being able to meet this demand offers the opportunity for success and profit.

We tend to pamper our pets, too. Theyre part of the family, so that means they gobble up a share of our income in food, vets bills, treats and a whole range of additional extras. Brits spend an estimated average of approximately £1,150-1,200 a year on their pets that breaks down to around £100 a month. Of that annual amount, owners spend nearly £200 on clothes, with 66% of owners admitting to buying accessories for their furry friends. Of the two most common pets, the UK spends £10billion (yes, billion) a year on the nations dogs, and £8billion a year on our cats. On top of those number, you need to factor in every other type of pet, including rabbits, pet rats, fish, reptiles, and even the occasional llama.

Its not just treats, presents, and even anniversary gifts that were indulging our animals with, either. A surprising 27% of dog owners questioned in a 2015 One Poll said that they get their hounds spa-style treatments. While daily grooming is an essential part of looking after any pet, it sounds like some of the nations dogs are getting more spa days than most humans!

Brushing your cares away

Lets consider one of the most popular luxury services that animal owners spend their money on pet grooming. With many households living busy lives, grooming pets are one task that some owners just dont have the time, or ability, to be able to do it themselves. This provides a fantastic business opportunity for animal-loving entrepreneurs to start a pet grooming franchise.

The popularity of long-haired breeds and dogs that need a little more TLC than your average mutt has helped the dog-grooming sector grow exponentially over the past few years. Even feisty little terriers and adorable dachshunds appreciate a spot of pampering now and then. Grooming cats can be a little more, shall we say, challenging, but the massive popularity in long-haired breeds such as Maine Coons and Norwegian Forest cats makes the feline market a growing one.

Grooming isnt just an aesthetic exercise, either. It is part of the essential care for any pet, ensuring that they dont end up with matted or contaminated fur which can lead to serious skin conditions such as mange. Good grooming is a sign that you care for your pet, and in our cash-rich/time-poor lifestyle, busy owners often prefer a professional pet grooming service to take care of their pets while they get on with their day.

What are the advantages of starting a pet grooming franchise?

The flexible nature of the business will allow you to choose where you work from. You can decide whether to be home-based, offer a mobile service, or work from a fixed premise with a store front.

Set up costs and ongoing expenses are low, especially for a home-based or mobile business. You will need to invest a certain amount in equipment such as grooming benches, specialist brushes and combs, and even a portable washer, but the nature of setting up a pet grooming franchise means you can spend as much or as little as you need to get you up and moving. As with any franchise, the majority of your expenditure will be in advertising, including both on and offline promotion.

Low investment offers the potential to make a big profit, quickly

Setting up your own pet grooming business gives you far more flexibility a great attraction if you want to break free of the usual 9-5 office routine. As the boss, you can decide on the hours you work so that you can fit your business around other commitments that you have, achieving the ultimate work/life balance. This is what makes pet grooming franchises so attractive, especially if you have a busy family life and need a job that will fit around everyday challenges such as school times and family meals. It also helps if youre passionate about pets!

One of the main reasons cited for people taking on a pet grooming franchise isnt just the flexibility or the chance to develop a successful and profitable business its the chance to work with animals on a daily basis. Pet grooming is a very tactile occupation; its quite literally a hands-on business model that appeals to those who have a real connection with animals.

Perfect for solo operators

A pet grooming franchise lends itself perfectly to a solo operation if youre looking for a business opportunity to start on your own. You can always choose to expand when you become more established by purchasing more mobile units, hiring staff or buying a store to be based from.

Alternatively, you can keep it small and mobile if you prefer, or if youre running your business from your own home, you can manage the size of the operation so that you can control the rate at which your business grows. The beauty of a pet grooming franchise is its flexibility, and once you have a loyal base of customers who all want you to look after their animal for you, youll find that your reputation grows quickly and more clients will seek you out.


As well as having the option to expand the business, you can also consider diversifying the services you offer, like pet sitting and dog walking, to give you an edge over your competitors.

Pet sitting is growing in popularity as people prefer to leave their pets at home rather than put them into kennels if they go on holiday. Kennels can be incredibly expensive, even if your pet is only staying for a few days, and pet owners often worry about the health and welfare of their pet during a stay in such proximity to other animals. By offering a pet sitting service, you can reassure owners that their pet will be comfortable at home and well looked after while they go on holiday. Pet sitting also tends to be more affordable than kennel fees, making it even more attractive to potential customers.

The same principles apply to dog walking services. This is particularly popular with older or infirm pet owners who may have difficulty getting out and about. A daily walk is essential for good health for any dog, so rather than having to give up their beloved pets, many owners now choose to ask a professional dog walker to take their pup for their daily run around the park. Its easy, its a great way to get fit and stay active, and you are getting paid for walkies!

There are other ways of diversifying your pet franchise, all of which come with their own benefits. Here are just a few for you to consider:

Pet food franchises

Its a great time to enter the pet food industry. According to the pfma, the pet food industry is worth £3 billion to the UK economy, and with 44% of households having at least one pet, its a sector thats likely to grow. And research by found that dog owners can spend up to a whopping £19,200 on mans best friend during their lifetime, with cat owners spending £12,300 on their feline friend. Considering that most of this expense is on the provision of pet food; the industry is a lucrative one worth investing in.

In 2018, one of the significant trends in pet food was personalised food everything from dried kibbles to wet food thats specifically tailored to meet the nutritional demands of the individual. Customers give the provider information about the breed, age, dietary requirements, and overall health of their animal, and the provider mixes up a tailor-made mix that offers balanced nutrition and is tasty too. We predict this trend to continue in 2019, as owners question more and more whats in the tin and move towards more premium quality pet food products.

Husee is a pet food franchise that offers an extensive range of 350 products designed for dogs, cats and horses which are conveniently delivered to the customers door. As well as pet food, health and hygiene products are available, along with pet supplies and accessories. Starting a pet food franchise with Husee will give you the chance to work within your local community so that travel and long commutes to work no longer need to exist in your quest to earn a living.

As well as being flexible, this opportunity can be very profitable too thanks to the high margins on the product range. Youll only need a £4,900 initial investment, so its very affordable for those new to the world of franchises. Total investment costs are around £20,000. The company also invests in its franchisees with one-to-one mentoring available in all aspects of the business, including sales, marketing and product knowledge.

With a similar business model, Oscar is also a pet food franchise that takes the hassle out of buying bulky food items for their customers beloved pets. The company takes a modular approach to the franchise package, meaning that franchisees have the option to start small to suit their budget. The standard package available has a very affordable investment price tag of just £8,995 all in and includes all the essential elements to launch your business. The initial franchise package includes branding for your vehicle, clothing and equipment, training and exclusive territory rights. The option is available to upgrade the package with stock or business extras to add finishing touches and personalisation to your franchise if desired.

Pet sitting franchises

In a recent study commissioned by Co-op Insurance, a massive 47% of pet owners in the UK say they feel guilty about leaving their pets when they go away. 15% wont even go on holiday without their pets, while 31% of those who do go, spend their holiday worrying about their pets. So, to avoid pet owners having to make the heart-wrenching decision to place their dogs into a kennel facility, popularity in pet sitting services is on the rise.

Businesses, like the leading UK pet franchise, Barking Mad, offer an alternative to traditional kennels giving pet owners peace of mind while theyre on holiday. As a franchisee, youll meet with customers within your community and organise home-from-home dog sitting services in local private residences. You dont need to be a dog lover, but it helps! Your day will consist of meeting new customers, taking photos and videos of dogs on holiday to share with their owners and performing admin tasks such as invoicing. Depending on the size of your ambition you can choose to establish your business from home at the start with the option to grow into an office-based facility managing a team of employees. The minimum investment is £14,957 with no other fees or costs to pay. Finance is available from lenders who recognise the potential of this top-rated franchise.


Whether you decide to run a pet food franchise or a pet grooming franchise, you can be sure that you will enjoy a rewarding career with longevity thanks to the incredible bond that Brits have with their pets. If you want to find out more about pet franchises, why not take a look at our Top 5 Pet Franchises article or our in-depth Are You an Animal Lover? article for lots more information.

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