10 ways to increase your dog training income

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If you’re maxed out on classes and 121’s but still want to increase your dog training income, then this blog is packed with ideas to help you grow your business this year. 

Let’s dive into ten fantastic ways to bolster your dog training income and make more money. 

1.Host one-off workshops

If you’re maxed out on classes or find venues a struggle, then hosting one-off workshops is a brilliant way to boost your income. Focus on one dog training problem or a fun activity for owners to try out and market to your existing email list, social media followers and in local dog groups. 

You could host a recall workshop, a loose lead walking session, an agility, scentwork or hoopers taster session or a settle class. 

2. Offer training walks

For owners who have more difficult dogs, such as reactive, nervous or timid dogs, finding a dog walker can be really hard. There are not many solo dog walkers and these dogs often can’t join group walks successfully. 

As a dog trainer you can charge more for these dog walks, since you have the skills and experience to safely walk these dogs and implement training on the owners behalf. 

This is also a great service for busy owners who likely have more disposable income and just want their dog walked and trained for them. Which leads nicely on to…..

3. Training done for you

As we head into an economically difficult period, it might feel like nobody has any money to spend on dog training. But that’s just not true. Even in a recession there are plenty of people who still have cash to splash, you just need to think about the lifestyles and needs of these people. 

bored dog

These are dog owners who are likely to lead busy lives, work long hours and desire a well trained dog but don’t have the time or desire to do it themselves. 

You can charge a premium for training their dogs for them, and just transferring the skills over to them. If you’re a dog trainer who loves training dogs but don’t get quite as much joy from the people side of things – this service is a no-brainer!

4. Social walks

Many dog owners love seeing their dog socialise with other dogs. And as a dog trainer this might be one of your biggest bug bears! As you head to your local park you see a ton of stressed out dogs, inappropriate interactions and owners standing by completely clueless to the communication going on in front of them. 

A brilliant way to give these owners what they want, whilst making things a zillion times better for the dogs, is to offer social walks. During these social events that owner’s crave, you can educate on dog body language, how to train good social manners and help make more dogs have positive and enjoyable dog walks. 

social dog walks

The added bonus of these is that you’ll likely have the opportunity to upsell to other training services when owners start sharing problems or challenges they’re experiencing. 

5.  Dog walker or daycare training/support

Dog walkers and daycares can benefit hugely from having a dog trainer to support them with their group dynamics, any tricky mismatches in their group walks and improving recall among their dogs. 

They’re also a brilliant source of referrals for future dog training clients. Reach out to dog walkers in your area and offer your support, and start building relationships. 

You can offer phone support/mentoring, or to join them on a walk to troubleshoot. This is a service that has the potential to dramatically improve dog walking and daycare services in your area whilst boosting your reputation in the area as a go-to trainer. 

The added bonus is you may find a great dog walker to refer clients to who need extra support. 

6. Seminars/training events for local pet pros

This one might not net you an immediate upsurge in revenue, but the long term referrals can be huge. Connect with local vets, groomers, rescue centres, and walkers to offer some CPD or support to help them with their struggles. 

For vets and groomers this could be dog body language or safer handling techniques or even a mini-training course to help their owners with happy husbandry training.  

dog at vets

Dog body language is a great one-off event to hold for both pet professionals and owners. You can host an event and charge a small fee, and you’ll be doing wonders for your local community. 

Back when I was a dog walker, an event like this changed by business entirely. A one-off session tagged onto a first aid training event opened my eyes to all the things I had never seen with the dogs I walked and it transformed my business model and the welfare for the dogs in my care. All the dogs I worked with that needed training support were referred to this local dog trainer, resulting in a lot of extra business for the trainer. 

Image with caption 'want to learn how to get better at marketing? Sign up for Underdogs Unleashed today.'

7. Puppy visits

Puppies have the potential to be lifelong clients for you. But outside of puppy training classes, how do you reach more puppy owners in your area? 

Puppy visits! Before a puppy completes their vaccinations, they are unable to join a dog walker for walks. If their owners are out at work, they need support with keeping their pup happy and ensuring they don’t spend too long alone. 

puppy visits

As a dog trainer you’re in a prime position to meet this need, offering a couple of puppy visits a day for a short period could lead to them booking further training help or buying a course. 

Whilst this might not light you up desire, it’s a short term service that will only last a couple of weeks and the long term pay off is likely to be worth it. You’ll be their go-to trainer for life. 

8. Support local rescues

Following the puppy boom of the pandemic, we all know there are sadly more dogs in rescue than ever. People adopting from rescues often don’t get the support they need to settle their rescue in well and support them during the transition. 

Partnering with your local rescue gives you an opportunity to reach these owners when they adopt, meaning you’ll get in before problems escalate. 

You could offer a free online mini-course, a discounted session or to host training classes for the rescue at a discounted rate or with a portion of costs going to the rescue. 

9. Affiliate marketing for dog trainers

Affiliate marketing is a great way to add an extra revenue stream to your business. Through partnering with dog food/treat companies to toy makers and healthcare supplements, you can make a little extra income purely by introducing your clients to brands you recommend. 

affiliate marketing pet industry

Promote these products to your clients at classes, via whatsapp, in your blogs, email marketing and across your social media and rack up some extra dosh in your bank account!

You can find affiliate marketing programmes in the pet industry to consider here. 

10. Mini dog training courses

Mini-courses are a great low-cost offer to have in your marketing funnel. These can be online courses in common topics such as recall, jumping up, loose lead walking or puppy training that people can buy at a fairly low price. 

This helps get people into your world and onto your mailing list, meaning when they need further training help, you’re likely to be their first port of call. It’s also a great downsell for people you talk to about 1-2-1 packages who aren’t ready to invest, meaning you can retain them and continue to nurture the relationship. 

How to market your new services

Talk about them on social media, send emails to your list about them, post in local dog groups where possible and write blogs on related topics and mention the service. Use relevant hashtags on instagram and Google Business Profile including your areas.

Remember, you can upsell and downsell to these services when you talk to new potential clients. Keep them in your pocket and use them when you see the opportunity. For example, someone struggling in puppy classes may benefit from some done for you training or someone enquiring about classes but on the fence may enjoy a workshop as a taster. 

If you need more help with improving your marketing, my course Underdogs Unleashed could be just what you need! It takes you through every element of your marketing in easy to execute steps.

Image with caption 'want to learn how to get better at marketing? Sign up for Underdogs Unleashed today.'

For building relationships with local pet professionals, you’ll need to do some outreach. Give them a call, drop them an email or pop in and talk to them. Always think about what’s in it for them and the problem’s they are facing so you can position it in a way that is appealing to them. 

Download your free guide to blog ideas for dog trainers here 👇

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Written by Rikki S

Hi, I'm Rikki. I'm a copywriter specialising in helping pet businesses with copy that attracts, engages, and converts.

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