Becoming a pet sitter: how to determine your rates

Becoming a pet sitter: how to determine your rates

16/12/2015

Perhaps you are considering becoming a pet sitter, or you might already have a profile on Pawhshake. You can decide for yourself which services you would like to offer: Dog walking, doggy day care, home visits or boarding. You determine yourself how much you want to charge for each service. But are you unsure how to decide on a rate for your services and what is reasonable?

Photo: Bill Young

You are completely free in setting your rates, but it's worth putting some thought into it. When filling in your rate on the dashboard, we provide you with an example rate which you can use - or you can choose your own. Consider the following when deciding on your rate:

Your motivation
Pet sitters on Pawshake offer their services out of love for animals. Earning some extra money is nice, but most Pawshakers start offering their pet sitting services because they have a passion for animals and being able to supplement their income is a bonus. They are passionate about animals and love helping out in their neighbourhood. So don't just consider the money, but also your own motivation.

How much time does it take?
A home visit requires a commute. During the visit you will most likely stay for a while,  play with the pet, clean an enclosure or cat litter box, collect the mail, etc. And as a dog walker, do you go for a 30-minute tour around the block, or do you go on a 1.5-hour hike with the dog? Depending on how much time your pet sitting service takes, you can raise or lower your rate.

Do you have any costs?
Think for example of the travelling costs that you have when you're offering home visits. Do you offer home boarding? Perhaps you have had to make some adjustments to your home to make it dog or cat 'proof'.

Do you have any particular skills like grooming or nail care?

Do you have any particular skills?
... because your know-how is worth something! Have you got professional grooming experience? Have you worked at a shelter? Do you know about training techniques, nail or dental care? Or have you perhaps participated in dog-related workshops or are you a veterinary student? In short: Consider your skills and knowledge and take them into account when setting a rate.

Do you get few or lots of requests?
Are you being flooded with requests and you can't take all of them? Or are things rather quiet and the  "competition" in the area is getting all the pet sitting jobs? If you aren't getting any requests, perhaps your rates are too high compared to other pet sitters, or the other way around. To get an idea of the rates your colleagues charge, you can always have a peek at their profiles.

Take the Pawshake contribution into account
In order to be able to maintain and develop the website and to pay for the Pawshake Guarantee and our team, we are charging a small contribution. That's why 19% of the amount for every booking will automatically be deducted before we pay you out. There are no further costs, and creating a profile is entirely free for both pet sitters and pet owners.

You can of course adjust your rates any time, so log in regularly in order to keep your profile up to date. What factors do you take into account when determining your rates? Have fun pawshaking!