Pet Care Business Sustainably

Can you imagine?

Can you imagine how much better your pet care services business is going to be in the future? Did you know that by adding just one new company value to your business’ guiding principles, you may end up surpassing even your wildest dreams? By focusing your business on sustainability, and living this value day in and day out, your business journey may also be much more rewarding for all involved. Are you skeptical? Here are 6 reasons to grow your business using sustainable solutions.

Better Employee Attraction-Retention-Growth

What is arguably the most important asset of your business? Your employees, which also represent your greatest area of investment. Many of them are millennials who tend to value job satisfaction and quality of life over pay. In a 2018 research survey of pet professionals by Pet Sustainability Coalition and WPA, 91% said it is important to them that their company is making a positive impact on the environment.

The research also found that the #1 benefit for employers by pursuing sustainability initiatives was to enhance employee attraction and retention. Net, net walking the talk on sustainability may be one of the best ways for you to motivate, retain, and grow your team.

Healthier and Happier Pet Guests

Odds are one of the biggest reasons you got into the pet care services business is because you love pets, and you will do virtually anything for them. Did you know that dogs and cats can smell many of the chemicals you may be using to clean their bowls and other important facility areas, and that this can deter them from drinking enough water or eating their food when away from home? In a 2018 research article entitled “Top 10 Smells Dogs Hate” from AnimalWise, the writer not only included the smell of cleaning products, but also indicated some can be harmful to dogs, and may cause them stress.

Imagine how much happier and healthier your pet guests would be if they all enjoyed optimal nutrition and hydration while at your facility. So, by reducing the use of harsh cleaning chemicals you may not only be helping your local environment, you may be also fulfilling your dream of making many pets that much happier and healthier.

Happier Customers

According to Wakefield Research, 35% of all pet parents are millennials, which is by far the largest demographic. So an increasing number of your customers are probably also millennials. If they have a choice between bringing their pet family members to your facility vs. another one which promotes their sustainability priorities, guess where they are more likely to lodge their pet? Is that enough to pique your interest?

If so, once you’ve initiated and communicated your new sustainability plans to current customers, you might be interested to know that many facilities establish a customer loyalty program to convert their customers to fans. The second phase of the loyalty program could be to incentivize their fans to tell their family and friends about their sustainability initiatives to bring them even more customers.

Lower Operating Costs

Did you know that many pet businesses which promote sustainability may also find more opportunities to lower their operating costs? For example, partnering with the Pet Sustainability Coalition, Camp Bow Wow identified multiple zero-cost strategies with annual savings over $10,000, as well as created plans to reduce annual energy use by 17% for their franchised operations.

So, if you are an independently owned and managed operation, it may be even more important for you to start your own sustainability plans now to be sure you are competitive with some franchised pet care services businesses in your area. By adding sustainability to your priorities, you may also be able to provide yourself more opportunities to enjoy owning your business and the journey, and may give you more profitable options if and when you decide to exit and sell your business.

Lower Capital Expenditures

How interested are you in lowering your capital expenditures? You probably know that commercial dishwashers can be a significant upfront investment. Did you know that according to research from the Pet Sustainability Coalition involving pet boarding facilities, the single largest environmental impact of pet bowls is consumer washing, given all the electricity, water, greenhouse gases, and waste involved?

Furthermore, the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association found in their research that 66% of pet bowls still had salmonella in them AFTER being run through a dishwasher. Why? According to the Center for Disease Control, a cleaning device must get to 250-270 degrees Fahrenheit to kill all germs. Most dishwashers never get hotter than 185 degrees. This may be one area for you to reduce your capital expenditures while reducing your environmental impact with healthier solutions for your pet guests.

Your Legacy

And what about your 2 and 4-legged family and friends, and their descendants? Driving more sustainability initiatives today and going forward to lower your facility’s environmental footprint will most likely help you provide a better quality of life for all in the future. So, while you may never view yourself as a full-fledged “tree hugger,” you will likely feel good about how sustainability will help your legacy down the road.

Are you interested in learning more about sustainable solutions to help you capitalize on any of these opportunities? Stay tuned as IBPSA will be introducing more value-added educational programs later this year to help you find sustainable solutions for your business and dreams.