In 2016, Americans spent nearly $6 billion dollars on pet grooming and boarding. This amount may continue to rise each year as pet owners these days are treating dogs and cats like family. They wouldn’t leave a child at home alone all day—much less overnight. So why would they do that to their furry companions?
We see the trends in pet boarding on the rise. It’s no wonder more doggie daycares and kennels are opening all the time. Right now, a boarding provider might charge $25-50 for a 24 hour stay. As this service becomes more readily available, prices are likely to drop with increasing competition.
Here are a few more trends that are impacting the industry right now.
- Almost 50% of pet owners are forgoing vacation because they don’t feel they have viable options for pet care while they are away. This means the market is still open for new entries—especially those that rely on innovation to make pet boarding more attractive.
- For pet owners with cash to spare, upscale pet hotels are making a splash. Some pet owners routinely spend $2,000 per month on giving their pets the very best. A luxury suite can run up to $200 for a single night!
- Pet sitting poses a threat to the continued growth of the boarding industry. Many consumers still see kennels as expensive, while most feel their pet is happiest when being cared for at home. In-home pet sitting is growing even faster than pet boarding, with on-demand services available from qualified sitters with the swipe of a phone app.
What’s a Doggie Daycare to Do?
Pet boarding will need to evolve to meet the needs of today’s customers. Some may want to add in-home sitter services to capture a larger piece of the market. Once pet owners feel comfortable using a boarder’s sitter service, they may be more inclined to try the drop-off service at the kennel. Adding transportation to take pets to and from the home may also be a desirable add-on service. Charging a monthly membership can help pet boarding companies increase profitability and offer a higher level of service.
Designing a nice boarding facility that provides activities to keep pets engaged will also be important. People are humanizing their pets, so the doggie daycares of the future may look a lot more like preschools, with training, fun games, and rest breaks to help the pets wind down between play times.
While there may be some price pressure as pet boarding is increasingly commoditized, a renewed interest in quality is likely to follow. Ensuring enough square footage per pet will be vital. Maintaining a clean and odor-controlled environment will also make a big difference in keeping pets healthy (and their owners happy). Steel buildings help achieve both these goals by reducing the cost of construction per square foot and limiting issues with excessive moisture that can contribute to odors.
To discuss your step toward the trends in pest boarding and beginning your pet boarding project, contact our design team today.