6 Traits of Successful Pet Business Owners

What does it take to have a thriving pet business? Here is a list of 7 characteristics that help entrepreneurs succeed in the pet industry.

What does it take to have a thriving pet business? Over several years of running Barking Design, I have worked with many dog-walkers, pet-sitters, and dog trainers. Some of them were able to double and triple their business in a matter of months, while for others it took years. These people were in the same industry, similar locations and most of them had a strong brand identity with solid online representation. What was their secret to success? What were they doing differently? I reviewed their action plans, their marketing endeavors, their business strategies. I analyzed and pondered. Finally I narrowed it down. Their magic formula. Their secret sauce. The answer.

It wasn't what they did, but who they were.

Here is the list of 7 characteristics of successful pet business entrepreneurs.

1. Success Mindset / Self-Belief

Self-belief is the most important characteristic of a thriving entrepreneur. Success Mindset is when you know you are going to make it. Big. No matter what. Successful entrepreneurs are tenacious. They have big goals. They have clear vision. They persevere in their efforts. Building a business is a journey. You are bound to have a few failures along the way. How you deal with them is the key. When you have a success mindset, those failures become nothing but small bumps on the road. **Action Step:** Next time you encounter a setback, ask yourself "What else can I do differently? What is one change I can implement today?"

2. Not Afraid to Invest in Their Business

Successful entrepreneurs go all in. They are playing a bigger game. They are not keeping themselves small. There is a difference between spending money on everything that catches your eye and investing into your future growth. For example, professionally designed brand identity or a website might seem like a splurge until you consider how much great visual design affects your client engagement.

Visually appealing web pages and business cards make potential clients trust you more and view your services as of higher quality. Which leads to more sales for your company. Going a D-Y-I route might be a fun project, but not a good business investment. You may be saving money short term, while impeding the growth of your company.


Analyze your business and find areas that can be improved. Which of them require immediate attention?

3. Open to Co-Creating with Others

Successful entrepreneurs tend to be natural connectors. They get along with others and enjoy social interaction.

Collaborating with other business owners is a surefire way to grow your marketing outreach. You can find other local businesses and cross promote. For example, if you are a dog walker, you can feature a local pet store on your blog in exchange for leaving a flyer in their location.


Find other pet businesses in your area that are providing services complimentary to yours. Get in touch with their owners and brainstorm on how you can promote each other. Can you set up a promo event together? Bundle up your services/products to increase value? Or at least link each other websites?

4. Have No Fear

Promoting your business when you are just starting out can be rough for some of us. No matter how great your online presence is, you still have to leave the safety of your computer screen and meet people face to face. Using fear of self-promotion as an excuse guarantees that your business will not grow. You might never be able to overcome that fear, but it doesn't mean you should not promote your services.

What is more important for you: feeling comfortable of having a profitable business?

Successful entrepreneurs do not shy away from judgement and criticism. They are resilient. In fact, they often do unconventional things to get attention. And they know that attention is good for business.


Find one social activity or a networking event to go to this week. Listen to all the excuses of why you should skip it, and make sure you go anyway. It only gets better with practice.

5. Flexibility

If you are looking for a fail-proof blueprint for a successful pet business, stop right there! It doesn't exist. There are plenty strategies and techniques that have worked for other people, but they come without any guarantees. Thriving entrepreneurs know that a business is an ever-evolving organism. They are not attached to a single idea. They are going with the flow, ready to change if needed. You might have started out as a dog walker but soon noticed a demand on boarding in your area. Should you continue with the original plan or explore other opportunities? Ultimately it is up to you. Smart business owners are constantly trying out new income revenues, like adding new services, reselling products, teaching classes, etc. They are ready to try something new, see if it works and change as needed.


Are there any business opportunities in your area you have never looked into? Is there a service your clients have been asking or will greatly benefit from? What else can you do to add more value?

6. Originality

Every marketing guru will tell you to study what other people in your industry are doing. You need to stay current and on top of the latest trends. Successful entrepreneurs tend to think outside the box.

They see opportunity where everyone else sees lack. They are not ok with status quo. They want to break the barriers and do something new and different. If you are just starting out with your pet business, study similar services in your area. Can you do what they do better? Or can you offer something that no one else has? For example, if you do grooming, can you add something unique like reiki, massage, or organic products? Or if you have clients living far from your location, can you set up a mobile grooming parlor and come to them? Do not be like everyone else. Be different.


Look at similar businesses in your area and see what you can do differently. Can you make a little (or big) change that will make you stand out.