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Sheltering Success: 10 Key Steps For Pet Boarders

You know that while your love for pets is strong, it can't run your business. Prime location secured, requirements researched, and extra training completed–you've got a plan. And hard work is no stranger to a pet boarder as dedicated as you. Mix in your all-star advisor team and you're sure to go far. But just how far could depend on whether you take time to pause, reflect, and react, before things get too busy.

Pet owners want assurance that their pet is in the next best hands to their own. And since every pet and circumstance will differ, dabbling in what-ifs is the perfect exercise. So before the first kennel door shuts, it's a good idea to have an open mind. You've got the professional bit worked out–let's tackle the rest.

Keys to Building Your Business

Let's be real: it's hard for pet owners to leave their babies. To be able to part with Precious, they'll need to take away a glowing first impression. How can you be a five-star pet hotel with repeat guests? We'll focus on 10 keys to maintaining success in your pet boarding business.

  1. Defined brand: Your company's ‘personality' and what it represents will impact every business decision–it can also help to attract your ideal clientele.
  2. Quality staff: Look for attentive folks with a great attitude and an eye focused on training–staff should have the skills needed to spot problems and act quickly.
  3. Local networking: Build working relationships with neighborhood groomers, veterinarians, and other pet-focused businesses–they are invaluable resources and their recommendations build trust.
  4. Clean surroundings: Keep sanitized, safe, and comfortable accommodations–pet health and safety must be the priority.
  5. Social media presence: Online interactions shine a light on your business and help to build relationships–those good feelings can translate into value and loyalty.
  6. Customer service focus: Attention focused on client needs pairs with a readiness to start the conversation–be generally available and ready to help.
  7. Certification: Additional schooling is great, certification ( is even better. Prove that you're committed to investing in client care–they'll see you as a professional and that's a point of value for everyone.
  8. Responsive communication: A myriad of options are out there–surveys, questionnaires, and follow-ups are a few. Pick what works for you and be ready to act on feedback.
  9. Solid insurance plan: Protecting your boarding business is top priority–all your hard work and planning are irreplaceable without it. Bonding could be another option to look into.
  10. Effective marketing: Show potential customers what sets you apart–why are you perfect for their pet?

Fine-tuned attention to detail helps in day-to-day operations, but also in noticing when a pet is uncomfortable or ill. This is key knowledge if you're boarding a good number of breeds and types. Besides knowing your stuff, adaptability is key. Yes you're the expert, but you're dealing with clients' family members–being flexible where possible will build rapport and show that you value their pets. And since you're the boss, you may need to make some hard rules about touchy topics, like pet vaccines.

Tours are an ideal time to showcase proud points and learn from client feedback–prove to pet parents that you're transparent in your operations. Potential clients might ask detailed questions on a facility tour so be gracious and informative.  Making pet products available–bedding, food, toys, etc.–can take the stress out of a first-time boarder's experience. And having an emergency evacuation plan is a good idea too–put clients' minds at ease.

Pet care is a fast-moving sector–with all the above in mind you can keep the pace and get noticed for the great things you do. With so many moving parts it will take time to fine-tune procedures. But with patience and a proactive approach you'll have a thriving business that's even more than you hoped for.

Here with You

These 10 keys to pet boarding success could have highlighted new points. Or maybe you were nodding while reading and thinking, “Yeah, I'm ready for this.” Regardless, we're happy you're with us. At we can't help but gush over our clients' passion and dedication. We know that entrepreneurship isn't easy–we've been there. So we understand how much work it takes to build a successful business. We also know that so much effort holds even more value–it deserves the best protection. That's where insurance saves the day. You can handle business without extra worry, knowing that crises will come and go–but you'll be safe. So drop a line to our pet care insurance gurus and get that fuzzy-slipper safety for yourself.

This blog post does not provide insurance advice and is intended for information purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional insurance advice from a licensed representative. Never ignore professional insurance advice because of something you have read in this blog post. Contact your licensed representative if you have any questions about your insurance policy.