Ever wondered how to start a dog treat business?
If you’re anything like me, I love to spoil my pet. Spoiling comes in all forms, from toys to cuddles, to making homemade treats so she has better food than I do.
There is always uncertainty regarding the quality of the ingredients being used in store-bought treats.
So you would rather make them yourself to ensure that your beloved pet is fed with only the best.
If this is you, have you thought about how to start a dog treat business? Or how to start a dog bakery business?
Or considered making dog treats to sell?
Pet treats are a big business, and it’s an industry that includes sales of up to 2.94 billion in the United States alone, in 2020.
But will a homemade pet treats business be a good idea? And most importantly, can you make money selling dog treats?
In this article, we will cover the 7 steps to how to start a dog treat business.
How To Start A Dog Treat Business in 2023 (7 Easy Steps)
- Do The Math
- Do A Course On How To Start A Dog Bakery
- Find Your Niche
- Find Some Great Recipes
- Get Your Supplies
- Promote Your Business
- Find Places To Sell
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1.Do The Math
Before getting your oven started and selling dog treats online, first, you need your dog bakery business plan.
Here’s a dog treat business plan sample if you need an idea of how to to get started with the plan. A business plan is a way for you to get clear on what you need to get started.
Then, it would help if you did the math so that you know how much this new venture is going to cost you, and make you.
To be successful and start your dog treat business from home, you need to know if this passion project will be profitable financially or good for your dog, who will be your taste tester.
How Much Does It Cost To Start A Pet Treat Business?
The minimum start-up costs for a homemade dog treat business could work out to approximately $100-$300 a month.
As you grow your business, the costs of starting your business will grow, as expected. It all depends how much you decide you want to grow your business.
What this includes is:
- software expenses
- office space (if you move to doing this outside your home)
- equipment and wholesale ingredients
- inventory expenses
- website costs
- advertising and marketing costs
- payments merchant fees.
Obviously, as with any business, by starting small and doing most of the things yourself, you’ll be able to cut a lot of costs.
For example, dog treat business supplies may cost you much more when you start. But as your business grows, you will be able to purchase in bulk at wholesale prices.
So start small initially and work on building your brand. Once you build your brand and a loyal customer base, you’ll be able to think about scaling your business.
How Much Money Can You Make Selling Dog Treats?
Now to the juicy stuff, how much money can you make selling homemade dog treats? Will starting a dog bakery be rewarding enough?
As a side-hustle, you can make around $500-$1000 a month. If you make this a full-time business, you can earn between $5000-$8000 a month.
Going back to how much running the business will cost you if you’re earning around $1000 a month, and your costs are around $300, that’s a profit of $700 a month.
That’s a profit margin of 70%!
Investors state that a good profit margin for a small business is above 20%, so this is definitely a high-profit margin product.
As you grow your homemade pet treat business, you will have higher business costs, but with the math, we’ve done above, your profits will increase as well.
How Much Do Homemade Dog Treats Sell For?
If you’re wondering how you get those profits when you start your dog bakery business, homemade dog treats can usually sell for between $15-$25. How much you charge will vary from the various types of:
- portions sizes, and
It’ll also depend on where you’re getting your supplies from.
If you decide to buy individual ingredients, your costs are going to be higher. Try finding wholesale suppliers to keep your costs low.
Now that you’ve done the math and are convinced that this is a good side-hustle (or full-time hustle) you’d like to get into. Let’s get into how you can start.
2.Do A Course On How To Start A Dog Bakery
If you haven’t made dog treats on your own, the first step could be doing a course on how to start a dog treat business at home. This will give you the knowledge needed to hit the ground running when you start your business.
The Diva Dog Bakery Course will step you through everything you need to know, from basic business 101 to recipes you can try so you can learn how to start your own dog treat business from home and hit the ground running.
The course costs $299 (one-time payment), but there are payment options if that’s too steep an investment in one shot.
Otherwise, you can break up your learning by doing some short courses online. Some courses include:
- Raw Feeding Diploma & How To Make Home Made Treats
- Insights and Details into Canine Raw Feeding and Nutrition
3.Find Your Niche
Now that you have an idea of what you need to do, finding a homemade dog treat business niche is a great way to target what you’re selling.
It’s better to have a smaller list of products and do those well, versus trying to sell a wide range that caters to a broader market.
I know earlier I said you can charge for a wide variety of things.
I’m not saying, don’t do this. I’m saying pick a niche or a handful of recipes.
For example, are all your homemade dog treats raw? Or are you going to focus on making dog-friendly doughnuts?
There are so many options, and if you pick a couple and ace them, you’ll be able to reap the benefits in no time. Another benefit to choosing a pet treat business niche is that you won’t need many ingredients and equipment.
As I said, start small and grow. Picking a niche is a great way to do this.
Some potential niches:
- dog biscuits
- gluten-free dog treats
- dental treats
- raw treats
- cupcakes, doughnuts, or cookies – anything of the baking variety.
4.Find Some Great Recipes
Now that you have your niche, it’s time to find some recipes.
If you already have some that you’ve been using to spoil your dog, start with those. You know they’re a winner already.
Otherwise, it’s time to scour the internet for some great recipes.
There are tons of great ones online, and you need to figure out which you want to do.
How Long Do Dog Treats Last?
This will come down to which recipe you use and how you store them.
Dog biscuits can last up to 6 months in an air-tight container. While dog cupcakes can be frozen and thawed out when you need to use them.
5.Get Your Supplies
Once you’ve figured out what niche you’re going to target and have a couple of recipes on hand, you’ll be able to start getting your supplies. If you’re starting small, get supplies that give you the ability to bake in bulk.
For example, don’t buy one cookie cutter.
Buy a couple or moulds that are able to make cookies in bulk. This will save you lots of time and help you make treats to keep up with demand.
6.Promote Your Business
Now it’s time to get your name out there.
Of course, first, you need to pick a business name. Have a look online to see what other people in the pet treat business have named theirs.
This will give you some inspiration for your dog treat business name ideas
As with any small business, marketing your product is going to be vital to being successful. With the internet, the sky’s the limit really to how you want to spread the word on your dog treat small business.
Next, if you need to learn how to start a dog treat business online, there are plenty of courses that will teach you the basics of starting a business so you can hit the ground running.
A couple of ideas to promote your business:
- social media
- reach out to pet stores, groomers, or other pet services and ask if you can leave a few samples
- help out at events held by dog organizations like the SPCA
- set up your website to send people to it when they ask you what you’re working on.
7.Find Places To Sell
With your promotion sorted out, it’s time to start selling. If you’d like to go the online route, you’ll need to set up your online store using an eCommerce provider like Shopify or Squarespace.
There are many different eCommerce providers, but an excellent place to start is to find one that links with your bank.
That way, it’ll be easy for you to make and receive payments. You want to make the process for your customers as simple as possible.
Another option would be setting up a store on Etsy.
Etsy is a global online marketplace, and it has been a great way for local retailers to get their handmade products out to the world.
They’ve got a great beginner’s guide with tips for a successful Etsy store. This makes selling dog treats on Etsy so much easier!
Online isn’t the only place you need to sell, though.
Start with word of mouth. Give samples to your family and friends and get them to pass them around their networks.
Another way would be to set up a stall at your local farmer’s markets or craft fairs.
Is A Dog Treat Business Profitable?
The short answer to this is Yes!
With the profit margin we calculated above, you’ll be making a profit in no time with the right balance between your costs and profits.
How much profit you make will depend on which country you’re in, as each country has different rules and regulations around businesses from home.
But one thing is for sure, starting a pet treat business is definitely worth a shot!
Whether you’re thinking about starting a dog treat business in UK or starting a dog treat business in Australia, be sure to check out the following articles for some guidance.
- How to start a dog treat business – UK
- How to start a dog treat business in Canada
- Starting a dog treat business in Australia (this includes the dog treat business license in Australia)
Dog Treat Business Success Stories
If you still need convincing, there are many success stories of people who have made some serious profits from their dog treat businesses.
For example, selling dog treats put this couple on track for $1 million in revenue.
And they started with the same question running through your head – can I make dog treats at home and sell them?
All they did was notice a gap in the market. Which was that there weren’t too many healthy options on the market. They then capitalized on this gap and were able to make a successful business from that.
If you’re still wondering can I sell homemade dog treats, here are some interesting statistics about the dog treat business that might convince you.
- There have been approximately 7 billion in sales in 2020 in the pet treats and chews industry.
- Over six out of ten dog owners care about what’s in the treats they buy for their fur babies.
- The industry of buying clean and healthy dog treats has grown. Dog owners want to be able to pronounce the ingredients in their dog treats.
FAQs on How To Start A Pet Treat Business
Can You Make Dog Treats At Home And Sell Them?
Yes, you definitely can.
Most dog-treat businesses start from home and turn into multi-million dollar empires. Use the steps that we’ve laid out above and you’ll be able to start your business from home in no-time.
Is Selling Dog Treats From Home A Good Side Hustle?
Taking into account the steps above, selling dog treats from home is a really good side hustle. Not only will you most likely have most of the supplies you need, apart from the treat molds.
For example, you probably have mixing bowls and a fridge, right?
You also have a tester ready and waiting (in the form of your dog!) Now you just need the time to hustle.
How To Make Dog Treats To Sell?
Steps to make dog treats to sell:
1. Crunch your numbers with a dog bakery business plan
2. Invest in a dog bakery course
3. Identify your dog treats niche
4. Search for dog treats recipes
5. Source for your dog treats supplies
6. Promote your business
7. Find places to sell your dog treats
How To Start A Dog Bakery?
The best way to start a dog bakery would be to take a course that will provide you with both business knowledge, as well as recipes and techniques to be used when making dog treats.
This course provides all the guidance you need to start your dog bakery.
How To Sell Dog Treats Online?
To sell dog treats online, you can use global online marketplaces, online stores, or even social media. These platforms can be used to sell dog treats online:
How Much To Charge For Homemade Dog Treats?
When deciding the amount to charge for homemade dog treats, you will have to take into account factors such as quality of ingredients, portion size, packaging, supplier costs, and overheads, amongst others.
A minimum profit margin of 30% should be apple to your price.
In general, homemade dog treats are priced between $15-$25.
How To Package Dog Treats To Sell?
One way of packaging dog treats to sell that is both budget-friendly and environmentally conscious is with the use of tightly sealed paper bags.
Ensure to include an ingredient label on the paper bags and a stamp of your brand logo.
Alternatively, you could include a sticker label of your brand on the paper bags.
How Long Do Homemade Dog Treats Last?
Homemade dog treats that are dry and baked have a longer shelf life as compared to dog treats that have more moisture in them.
They can last for about a week in the larder, and up to two weeks when placed in the refrigerator.
In general, crispier baked treats stay fresh for much longer.
What Flour Is Best For Dog Treats?
Whole wheat flour, oat flour, almond flour, and chickpea flour are favored options for dog treats.
Whole wheat flour is rich in antioxidants, minerals, proteins, and vitamins, and is a wonderful choice when making dog treats.
As flour is a common allergen for dogs, whole-grain flours are the best option, especially for dogs with allergies.
How To Sell Homemade Dog Treats?
You can sell your homemade dog treats via various avenues such as in markets, by opening up a physical store, through online platforms such as Etsy, Amazon, or your very own online store that you can set up with Shopify or Squarespace.
Ensure that your packaging is catchy and sturdy, and includes all relevant information.
How Much Does It Cost To Start A Dog Food Business?
The cost to start a dog food business at home is around $100-$300 a month, and this amount is bound to understandably increase as your business grows.
These costs include advertising and marketing, purchasing of ingredients, software, inventories, equipment, and payments to various suppliers and merchants.
How To Sell Dog Treats On Etsy?
To sell dog treats on Etsy, you will need to set up a store and adhere to all legal requirements such as obtaining your business license and a seller’s license, depending on your local state laws.
Also, ensure that the labeling of ingredients is done transparently to avoid any non-compliance with the law.
Now that we’ve covered everything there is to know about how to start a dog bakery business at home, it’s time for you to embark on your dog treats business!
That’s how you do it.
With these 7 steps on how to start a dog treat business from home, you’ll be running a profitable business in no time.
Get the basics right, and once you get into the swing of things, you can think about ways to scale your business to be a future dog treat mogul.