If you love dogs, you might be thinking of setting up your own dog boarding business, looking after people's pets while they're out at work or away overnight. But what do you need to do in order to become a licenced dog boarder? Read on for some helpful information.
Becoming a dog boarder – what to expect
- In order to legally board dogs in your home you must have a licence from your local council. Before you'll be given a licence, a council inspector will pay a visit to your home to make sure that it is safe and adequate to host visiting dogs. If you live in a very built-up, residential area, this could be a problem as the continual barking of guest dogs could cause annoyance to your neighbours. You must also have sufficient space, both inside and outdoors, for your guest dogs to play and move around in comfort. If you live in a small flat with a communal garden, it's unlikely that you will be granted a licence. You should also be able to show that you will be at home most of the day and during the evenings so that you can properly supervise the dogs you are boarding. If you are going to be boarding dogs overnight, you'll need to show that you have suitable areas in which the dogs can sleep separately.
- In addition to a licence, you must also have the relevant insurance to board dogs. This insurance must include third party liability coverage to protect you in the event that a dog in your care is injured by another dog or as the result of an accident during exercise.
- Although you will be boarding dogs in your own home so you won't have the overheads associated with running a separate boarding kennel, you'll need to invest on plenty of suitable beds, crates for overnight boarders, toys, and feeding bowls.
- You must meet all the dogs you are going to board before they arrive to be placed in your care. This gives you a chance to get to know the owners as well as the dogs and allows you to assess any potential behavioural issues that may become apparent before you agree to take the dog as a boarder.
Becoming a dog boarder is undoubtedly a really enjoyable way of indulging in something you love and making a living at it. Before you take the plunge, it's a good idea to have a chat with other dog boarders in your area for more advice on how to get started.