Coronavirus Action Plan For Pet Businesses

You might also be interested in small business loans

Updated 04.30.20

Create a virtual tip jar during COVID-19

Payment relief

A large list of banks allowing payment relief

Grants and loans

State-by-state list of grants and loans

Updated 03.27.20

Unemployment insurance

Part of the two trillion dollar stimulus plan is going to allow individuals to apply for un-employment who usually can not. 

Check out this link and choose your state to see if you qualify

Free local marketing course for pet businesses

During the coronavirus Small Biz University is making their local marketing course for pet businesses free. 

SBA loans

How to apply for an SBA loan: 

  • First check here if you’re located in what’s considered a disaster area. You can still apply if you’re not in a disaster area. 
  • Next download this form if you’re a business (LLC, Corp, etc.) or this form if you’re a sole proprietor. 
  • If you are deemed to live in a disaster area also download this form to fill out. 
  • Once you fill out the forms you can apply for a loan here
  • Once you’ve applied you can follow-up on the status of your application in the following ways: 

By Phone:
   1-800-659-2955 (TTY/TDD: 1-800-877-8339)

By Email:
   [email protected]

Updated 03.26.20

Sign the petition to keep pet care as an essential service.

dog friendly nyc

Ideas to make money

You should especially check out the loans and grants you might qualify for. Here are some other ideas: 

See if clients will offer to pay you tips
  • Write an email/or call your customers and explain the severity of your situation. 
  • Ask your customers if they would be willing to give a one-time tip or recurring tip to their walkers/sitters. 
  • I did this and over 75% of my daily dog walking customers agreed to. Here’s an example email asking for help

Let clients pre-pay for future work

Thank you to my friend Pat Blaney for this idea. Let your clients pre-pay for service they will use you for when the coronavirus is over. 

Get your financials in order

Get your financials in order. For loans and grants you’ll likely have to show the differences in income between this year and last year. Have bank statements, payroll reports, sales tax receipts, etc. ready. 

If people work for you

Implore your dog walkers and sitters to explore their own resources. Resources would include things they can sell, people they can do odd jobs for, skills they can monetize, people who they can borrow money from, etc. 

Try and get a sense of your walkers and sitters monthly overhead and do what you can to support them. 

Involve your walkers and sitters in projects that will benefit your company now or the future. Maybe now is the time to create that new service etc. 

Laser focus

Concentrate on the types of services and products that are relevant to today. You might live in a place where lots of people want to leave for a few months. This will mean an increase in sleepovers, pet sits and dog boarding, etc. Go to where the demand is today. 

Plan ahead

Now could be a great time to plant a seed for sixth to twelve months from now. This could be: 

Non-pet related content

If there’s one thing we’re all doing right now it’s having things delivered. You work locally on foot, bike or car. There could be an opportunity this moment to make money delivering Amazon, Uber Eats, Postmates, etc. 

Connect with peers

I understand many of us don’t connect much with our peers. Now could be a great time to do this though. There are some of your peers who can’t or don’t want to work. They might be open to referring you business. 

Stay on top of relevant news

We all know much of the news is meant to worry us and keep us watching. Try to stay on top of things related to your business like: 

  • Loan and grant opportunities. 
  • Credit payment deferrals. 
  • Rent deferrals. 
  • Etc. 


Most of all please be safe and try to take things day by day. I find being in the moment is always the best solution. Not worrying too much about the past or future can help keep us grounded at the task in front of us. 

What would you recommend people do? 

Add your ideas in the comment section below to help your peers. 

Information on this page was gathered from third party sources. Please contact them to verify the accuracy of the information.

What can dog walkers do during COVID-19?

  1. Allow customers to pre-pay for services

    Many clients would love to support you and pre-paying for future services is a way you can keep income coming in.

  2. Cancel subscriptions

    Many subscription services (think software, insurance, etc.) will allow you to pause payments for a few months.

  3. Pause loan and bank payments.

    Many financial institutions are allowing people to pause or lower their monthly payments.

  4. Create a virtual tip jar.

    Whether it’s for you or your company there are many customers who would like to support you during this time. A virtual tip jar is a great way to let them do this.

  5. Stay in touch with your customers

    Try to send them updates about your company and messages that might brighten their day. Find funny gifs or videos of pets. Send them ideas on games they can play at home right now.

  6. Send them something

    If you can’t see your customers in person right now consider sending them something they can enjoy with their pet. Maybe it’s a ball for their dog or a magic wand for their cat.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SparkyGo.