Business plan for dog walking service
Are you planning to start a dog walking business? Well, dogs are the most popular pet in the world especially in the United States where 89.7 million dogs were owned as pets in 2017. According to a recent survey, these dog owners need the services of dog walkers which can take their beloved dogs on the very much needed walk when they are not around.
The people of the United States spend extravagantly on their pets, the majority of which are dogs. So, if you are thinking about starting this venture you should know that you can earn some serious cash provided you plan your business efficiently.
The first thing before making any move towards this business is to write a comprehensive plan which will establish the basis of your company’s future operations and decisions. Although dog walking business is relatively simpler and much easier to start as compared to other businesses yet you will need an in-depth business plan to determine the course of your actions.
So, if you are wondering how to write an effective business plan then here we are providing you the business plan for a dog walking startup named ‘PupWalk’.
2.1 The Business
PupWalk will be located in the New York City at a fifteen-minute drive from the Chelsea neighborhood. The company will be licensed by American Pet Association and equipped with all resources to provide the highest quality of services possible.
The business will be owned and operated by Ted Mills, a renowned dog trainer of the United States. Mills has been serving in various executive positions in major dog training centers of the United States. That’s why he perfectly knows how to start a dog walking business and yield profit even in the first year of launch.
Starting even a simple business, like a dog walking business, has its own demands. You’d probably think, ‘before starting a dog walking business what do I need?’ Well, the most important thing that you will need for your business is a good management. Mills will manage the overall operations of the company and will hire only a few people in the initial phase. He will be assisted by his niece, Lisa Mills- a financial expert, for managing the finance of the company.
The company aims to serve one of the richest and the busiest cities in the United States. The community living in the region has the annual mean household income of over $400,000 and is most of the time stuck up in its busy routine. That’s why we are there for them to offer our quality services of walking their beloved dogs.
2.4 Target of the Company
The company aims to provide highest quality service to its customers and become the best dog walking business of the New York City within three years of its launch. Mills also plans to launch a few more centers in other cities as well.
The company’s financial experts have forecasted following sales and profits for the next three years of launch.
3.1 Company Owner
PupWalk will be owned by Mills who has spent nearly his entire life among dogs. Mills was a dog lover even from his childhood. He has been serving in various dog training centers throughout the United States for the last 20 years.
3.2 Why the Business is being started
Mills has always wanted to start a dog walking business out of his love for dogs and had been planning for it for quite a time. He believes that he has fully explored the dog training area and now it was time for him to move on to something new related to dogs. He wants to dedicate his life to serving these voiceless innocent creatures and the best way to do that was to start his own business. Dog walking business was the most suitable option as it requires a minimum capital and investment as compared to other dog businesses.
3.3 How the Business will be started
Mills has planned everything about his business. All the initial investment will be made by Mills himself and he won’t need any loans, at least for the first year of operations. Being experienced in the pet industry, Mill knows how to start and how to promote dog walking business.
PupWalk will be a bonded, insured and licensed dog daycare business. Mills is about to acquire the license for the company and has already procured a beautiful facility near the residential zone of the city. The cost of inventory has been estimated with the help of experts. Mills, with the help of financial experts, has forecasted following costs for expenses, assets, investment, and loans for the Start-up.
The detailed start-up requirements, start-up funding, start-up expenses, total assets, total funding required, total liabilities, total planned investment, total capital and liabilities as forecasted by experts, is given below:
|Research and Development||$32,750|
|TOTAL START-UP EXPENSES||$485,000|
|Other Current Assets||$222,500|
|Start-up Expenses to Fund||$121,875|
|Start-up Assets to Fund||$195,000|
|TOTAL FUNDING REQUIRED||$0|
|Non-cash Assets from Start-up||$118,750|
|Cash Requirements from Start-up||$0|
|Additional Cash Raised||$118,750|
|Cash Balance on Starting Date||$121,875|
|Liabilities and Capital||$0|
|Accounts Payable (Outstanding Bills)||$0|
|Other Current Liabilities (interest-free)||$0|
|Additional Investment Requirement||$0|
|TOTAL PLANNED INVESTMENT||$495,000|
|Loss at Start-up (Start-up Expenses)||$113,125|
|TOTAL CAPITAL AND LIABILITIES||$121,875|
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Services for customers
Our dog walking service is primarily aimed to serve those people who cannot spare some time for their dogs due to their busy schedule or those people who are unable to go on a walk due to health issues.
We will walk our customer’s dogs while they are at work, or away on a vacation, or enjoying a weekend trip. Besides the dog walking service, we will also provide training, exercising, feeding, and veterinary services for the dogs. We will also provide transportation services to pick and drop the dogs from their owners hence facilitating them by every means.
Marketing Analysis of dog walking business
The most important component of the business plan of dog walking service is its accurate marketing analysis. Mills paid a lot of emphasis on it before developing the dog walking business plan. He even acquired the services of marketing experts to help him make the business plan of dog walking service.
5.1 Market Trends
The pet industry has seen a tremendous increase over the past few years. According to the American Pet Products Association, the residents of US spent a staggering amount of $60.28 Billion in 2015, $66.75 Billion in 2016, and are $69.36 in 2017. These stats show that this industry can be immensely profitable provided that you market yourself successfully.
In the pet industry, the dog walking business has seen a consistent increase and the number of businesses providing dog services have found to increase exponentially. After carrying out a thorough research, our experts found that dog walking service is very much required especially in the busy cities like New York.
5.2 Marketing Segmentation
A successful and efficient marketing strategy can only be developed after we know our potential customers. That’s why our marketing experts carried out an extensive research to identify our target customers. Our experts have identified the following type of target audience which can become the future consumers of our services and products:
The detailed marketing segmentation of our target audience is as follows:
5.2.1 Individual Households
The biggest consumer of our services and products will be the community living in the Chelsea neighborhood of the city. The residential community includes three main types of people who will need our services.
- The first is the youth who due to their involvement in busy academic and social life has no time to walk their dogs themselves.
- The second is the working class men and women who also cannot spare time for walking their dogs due to their busy schedule.
- The third is those elderly people whose health doesn’t allow them to go for a walk.
These residents are also much likely to acquire our dog training, exercising, and veterinary services. Furthermore, the first two groups will need our services only during the official days of the week. We will see a reduction in sales from these groups in summer when most of the young residents will be on the vacation.
5.2.2 Corporate Organizations
Many corporate organizations like police or security agencies own detective dogs. They need their dogs to remain healthy and hence will require our services throughout the year.
5.2.3 Dog Dealers
There are also various dog dealers in the New York City. They also need their dogs to stay healthy but can’t walk such a large number of dogs themselves. Hence we will provide our services to them. We hope that these dealers will also help us generate a lot of revenue. They will also need our services throughout the year.
5.2.4 Animal Shelters
There are more than 3500 animal shelters in the United States for accommodating abandoned, stray, or lost animals. Usually, these shelters lack the dog walking staff, hence we hope to target the animal shelters located near us.
The detailed market analysis of our potential customers is given in the following table:
|Potential Customers||Growth||YEAR 1||YEAR 2||YEAR 3||YEAR 4||YEAR 5||CAGR|
5.3 Business Target
We aim to become the best dog walking business in the New York City within next three years. Our business target can be subdivided as follows:
- To achieve the net profit margin of $20k per month by the end of the first year
- To increase the profit margin by at least 15% each year
- To balance the initial cost of startup with earned profits by the end of three years
5.4 Product Pricing
We have priced our products and services in the similar ranges as of our competitors. The reason behind this pricing policy is to attract as many customers towards us as possible. We will offer three types of packages which are:
- Daily package starting from $15
- Weekly package starting from $60
- Monthly package starting from $500
These packages also include the transportation charges. Training and exercising will be inclusive of the monthly package. Veterinary services are free to cater all unforeseen circumstances.
After carrying out the marketing analysis, next step was to develop an effective strategy to target them successfully. The strategy developed by our company experts is as follows:
6.1 Competitive Analysis
Luckily there is only a few other dog walking services in the Chelsea neighborhood of the New York City. So we will have a little competition ahead of us. But our biggest competitive edge will be the magnitude of our startup and the additional dog training, exercising, and veterinary services. Our second competitive edge will be our transportation services which are not provided by any of our competitors in the neighborhood.
6.2 Sales Strategy
Sales experts gave many dog walking business ideas to Mills for the purpose of increasing sales. It was decided that we will arrange special transportation facilities for our customers so that they can easily send their dogs to us. We will also offer special packages and discounts for organizations, dealers, and shelters.
6.3 Sales Forecast
Considering the market demand and the quality of our services, our sales pattern is expected to increase with years. Our experts have forecasted the following sales on the yearly basis which are summarized in the column charts.
The detailed information about sales forecast, total unit sales, total sales is given in the following table.
|Unit Sales||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Dog Walking Services||1,435,320||1,250,430||1,762,450|
|TOTAL UNIT SALES||2,374,330||2,737,390||4,000,310|
|Unit Prices||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Dog Walking Services||$1,400.00||$1,200.00||$1,000.00|
|Dog Walking Services||$602,350||$723,000||$822,050|
|Direct Unit Costs||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Dog Walking Services||$0.70||$0.75||$0.80|
|Direct Cost of Sales|
|Dog Walking Services||$87,700||$89,200||$90,700|
|Subtotal Direct Cost of Sales||$294,100||$699,400||$1,104,700|
7.1 Company Staff
Mills will manage the overall operations of the business while the finances will be managed by Lisa. The company will initially hire a small team during the first year of its launch. The staff will increase with the increase in sales over the course of three years. The initially hired staff includes:
- 1 Accountant to maintain financial records.
- 4 Sales and Marketing Executives responsible for dealing with corporate businesses, dog dealers, and animal shelters
- 15 Dog Walkers to provide the main dog walking service
- 5 Dog Trainers which will also help them in exercise
- 4 Drivers to transportation of dogs owned by dealers, organizations, and shelters
- 1 Front Desk Officer to act as a receptionist in the company office
- 1 Veterinary Doctor to provide first-aid in case of an emergency
To ensure the best quality service, all employees will be selected through vigorous testing and will be trained for a month before starting their jobs.
7.2 Average Salary of Employees
The following table shows the forecasted data about employees and their salaries for next three years, as calculated by the financial experts of the company.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Sales and Marketing Executives||$145,000||$152,000||$159,000|
|Front Desk Officer||$20,000||$23,300||$30,000|
The finance experts helped Mills in setting the dog walking business prices and developing a financial plan for the company. The financial plan developed by them outlines the development of company over the next three years.
8.1 Important Assumptions
The company’s financial projections are forecasted on the basis of following assumptions.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Current Interest Rate||10.00%||11.00%||12.00%|
|Long-term Interest Rate||10.00%||10.00%||10.00%|
These assumptions are quite conservative and are also expected to show deviation but to a limited level such that the company’s major financial strategy will not be affected.
8.2 Brake-even Analysis
The following graph shows the company’s Brake-even Analysis.
The following table shows the company’s Brake-even Analysis.
|Monthly Units Break-even||5530|
|Monthly Revenue Break-even||$159,740|
|Average Per-Unit Revenue||$260.87|
|Average Per-Unit Variable Cost||$0.89|
|Estimated Monthly Fixed Cost||$196,410|
8.3 Projected Profit and Loss
|Pro Forma Profit And Loss|
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Direct Cost of Sales||$15,100||$19,153||$23,206|
|TOTAL COST OF SALES||$15,100||$19,153||$23,206|
|Gross Margin %||94.98%||94.72%||94.46%|
|Sales and Marketing and Other Expenses||$1,850||$2,000||$2,150|
|Total Operating Expenses||$188,766||$220,744||$252,722|
|Profit Before Interest and Taxes||$105,205||$146,040||$186,875|
8.3.1 Profit Monthly
8.3.2 Profit Yearly
8.3.3 Gross Margin Monthly
8.3.4 Gross Margin Yearly
8.4 Projected Cash Flow
The following column diagram shows the projected cash flow.
The following table shows detailed data about pro forma cash flow, subtotal cash from operations, subtotal cash received, sub-total spent on operations, subtotal cash spent.
|Pro Forma Cash Flow|
|Cash Received||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Cash from Operations|
|Cash from Receivables||$7,023||$8,610||$9,297|
|SUBTOTAL CASH FROM OPERATIONS||$47,143||$53,651||$59,359|
|Additional Cash Received|
|Sales Tax, VAT, HST/GST Received||$0||$0||$0|
|New Current Borrowing||$0||$0||$0|
|New Other Liabilities (interest-free)||$0||$0||$0|
|New Long-term Liabilities||$0||$0||$0|
|Sales of Other Current Assets||$0||$0||$0|
|Sales of Long-term Assets||$0||$0||$0|
|New Investment Received||$0||$0||$0|
|SUBTOTAL CASH RECEIVED||$47,143||$53,651||$55,359|
|Expenditures||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Expenditures from Operations|
|SUBTOTAL SPENT ON OPERATIONS||$35,296||$39,549||$43,582|
|Additional Cash Spent|
|Sales Tax, VAT, HST/GST Paid Out||$0||$0||$0|
|Principal Repayment of Current Borrowing||$0||$0||$0|
|Other Liabilities Principal Repayment||$0||$0||$0|
|Long-term Liabilities Principal Repayment||$0||$0||$0|
|Purchase Other Current Assets||$0||$0||$0|
|Purchase Long-term Assets||$0||$0||$0|
|SUBTOTAL CASH SPENT||$35,296||$35,489||$43,882|
|Net Cash Flow||$11,551||$13,167||$15,683|
8.5 Projected Balance Sheet
The following projected balance sheet shows data about total current assets, total long-term assets, total assets, subtotal current liabilities, total liabilities, total capital, total liabilities and capital.
|Pro Forma Balance Sheet|
|Assets||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Other Current Assets||$1,000||$1,000||$1,000|
|TOTAL CURRENT ASSETS||$201,259||$237,468||$273,677|
|TOTAL LONG-TERM ASSETS||$980||$610||$240|
|Liabilities and Capital||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Other Current Liabilities||$0||$0||$0|
|SUBTOTAL CURRENT LIABILITIES||$9,482||$10,792||$12,102|
|TOTAL LIABILITIES AND CAPITAL||$198,839||$232,978||$267,117|
8.6 Business Ratios
The following table shows data about business ratios, ratio analysis, total assets, net worth.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3||INDUSTRY PROFILE|
|Percent of Total Assets|
|Other Current Assets||1.75%||2.02%||2.29%||27.40%|
|Total Current Assets||138.53%||150.99%||163.45%||54.60%|
|Percent of Sales|
|Selling, General & Administrative Expenses||74.29%||71.83%||69.37%||65.20%|
|Profit Before Interest and Taxes||26.47%||29.30%||32.13%||2.86%|
|Total Debt to Total Assets||2.68%||1.04%||0.76%||67.10%|
|Pre-tax Return on Net Worth||66.83%||71.26%||75.69%||4.40%|
|Pre-tax Return on Assets||64.88%||69.75%||74.62%||9.00%|
|Additional Ratios||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Net Profit Margin||19.20%||21.16%||23.12%||N.A.|
|Return on Equity||47.79%||50.53%||53.27%||N.A.|
|Accounts Receivable Turnover||4.56||4.56||4.56||N.A.|
|Accounts Payable Turnover||14.17||14.67||15.17||N.A.|
|Total Asset Turnover||1.84||1.55||1.26||N.A.|
|Debt to Net Worth||0||-0.02||-0.04||N.A.|
|Current Liab. to Liab.||1||1||1||N.A.|
|Net Working Capital||$120,943||$140,664||$160,385||N.A.|
|Assets to Sales||0.45||0.48||0.51||N.A.|
|Current Debt/Total Assets||4%||3%||2%||N.A.|
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