Dog and Cat Kennel Business Plan
Noah’s Arf is a full-service animal care facility dedicated to consistently providing high customer satisfaction by rendering excellent service, quality pet care, and furnishing a fun, clean, enjoyable atmosphere at an acceptable price. We will maintain a friendly creative work environment which respects diversity, ideas, and hard work.
The timing is right for starting this new venture. Animals are playing a larger role in our lives, and working people are choosing to provide them with a good life. Loving families with active pets and an active conscience are in search of better lives for their pets and peace of mind for themselves, causing busy animal lovers to flock to an ever-growing number of animal day care facilities across the nation. For customer convenience, in addition to day care, Noah’s Arf will include overnight care, in-home care, wash your own, pet grooming, animal behavior, pet portraits, gift and pet specialty products, 24 hour service, and special requests, all at one facility.
Kris Price, owner, has worked at a high paced, customer service oriented profession at a growing company for twenty-three years. She has earned the respect of her colleagues through hard work and dedication. Her daughter is a graduate from veterinarian technical college and will join the staff in the fall of Year 1. Kris cares for pets of friends often, and at any given time there have been one or more animals living in her home. From business colleagues to friends surveyed, Kris has what it takes to make this venture extremely successful. She will count on her reputation to exceed expectations while continuously establishing an active client base.
To achieve our objectives, Noah’s Arf is seeking a long-term commercial loan. This loan will be paid back from the cash flow of the business within seven years, collateralized by the assets of the company, backed by personal integrity, experience and a contractual guarantee from the owner. Start-up costs will be used to purchase fixed assets, supplies, advertising, and opening cash on hand.
- Monthly sales increasing steadily throughout FY 1.
- Gross margin higher than 50% on pet products.
- Full capacity by year end FY 2.
- Expansion of services by FY 3.
To provide excellent animal care in a pet friendly atmosphere while ensuring our customers, both pet and owner, receive excellent service in a playful safe environment.
1.3 Keys to Success
The keys to success in our business are:
- Superior Customer Service: 24 hour high-quality care and service.
- Environment: provide a clean, upscale, odor free, enjoyable environment conducive to giving professional trusting service.
- Convenience: offering clients a wide range of services in one environment.
- Location: provide an easily accessible location for customer convenience.
- Reputation: credibility, integrity, and 100% dedication from 23+ years employment at current workplace.
Noah’s Arf is a new company that will provide high-level animal care and customer service in the following categories:
- Overnight care.
- Day care.
- In-home care.
- Wash your own pet.
- Pet grooming.
- Animal behavior classes.
- Pet portraits.
- Gift shop.
- Special events.
- Special requests.
- 24 hour service.
What will set Noah’s Arf apart from the competition is our commitment to provide these services in one convenient location that is not limited to dogs and cats.
2.1 Company Ownership
Noah’s Arf will be created as a Oregon Limited Liability Company (LLC) based in Multnomah County, privately owned by its principal operator.
2.2 Start-up Summary
Total start-up requirements include legal costs, logo design, stationery and related expenses. The start-up costs are to be financed partially by the direct owner investment and long-term loan financing.
2.3 Company Locations and Facilities
This facility will be established in an upscale, growing area in Northwest Portland described as the Pearl District. We will service the growing condominium area, the West Hills area, while capturing the Beaverton area for those customers coming into the Downtown Portland and airport areas. The facility is zoned EXD, which will allow day and overnight care.
Products and Services
Noah’s Arf wants to set itself apart from other animal service facilities that may offer only one or two types of services. While talking to several pet owners, I have come to realize they desire the services I am proposing, but are frustrated because they must go to several different businesses. The focus of Noah’s Arf is day care and overnight care. However, the services we provide will be above and beyond what our competition can offer.
Our business atmosphere will be clean, friendly and upscale where customers will be comfortable leaving their pets. We will offer a personal touch, such as birthday cards and a daily report card for each pet that is registered with Noah’s Arf.
Our business will offer 24 hour service, a unique concept in this type of industry.
3.1 Product and Service Description
Noah’s Arf will be considered an upscale, full-service animal care facility. We will offer a wide range of services, not limited to dogs or cats. Services are as follows:
- Overnight Care: Leave your pet for as long as necessary for 24 hour care and attention. 26 large dog runs and eight kitty condos.
- Day Care: Provide 3,000 sq. ft. for a fun, safe atmosphere for pets to spend the day exercising and enjoying the company of other pets.
- In-home Animal Care: Staff will go to homes to feed, walk, play, and check on pets as often as requested. Mail will be picked up and plants watered if requested.
- Wash Your Own Pet: Provide four tubs, brushes, environmentally safe shampoo, dryers and aprons for clients who bring their pets in to wash.
- Pet Grooming: Provide on-site professional pet grooming services.
- Animal Behavior Courses: Provide certified animal training courses for the beginner, intermediate, and advanced.
- Pet Portraits: On-site portrait opportunities.
- Gift Shop: Provide specialty pet-related gifts and products.
- Special Events: Coordinate pet birthday parties or any other special occasions on-site or at a location of choice.
- Special Requests: Provide service for pets with special needs including administering medication, assisting with recovery from surgery, handicaps, etc.
- Pet taxi.
3.2 Competitive Comparison
The competition comes in several forms. There are several organizations that offer one or two services at their location.
Day care is a new business, offered currently only to dogs. There are eight dog day care facilities in the Portland area:
- Urban Fauna in Northwest.
- Lucky Dog Day Care in Tigard.
- Happy Go Lucky Dog Training and Playcare in N. E. Portland.
- Day Care for Doggy in N. E. Portland.
- Doggone Fun! in Tualatin/Sherwood.
- Kountry Kanine in Gresham.
- No Bonz About It N. E. in Portland.
- See Spot Play in S. E. Portland.
None of these facilities offer 24 hour care making it inconvenient for clients to pick up their pet by a specified time.
Noah’s Arf will service all domestic animals within reason. We will not be limited to dogs only.
There are seven wash your own dog facilities in the Portland area:
- Beauty For the Beast in N. E. Portland.
- Rub-A-Dub Dog Wash in S. E. Portland.
- The Dog Wash in Beaverton.
- Bowsers Bath in Tigard.
- Connie’s U Wash Dog Wash.
- Aqua Dog in Beaverton.
- Pups & Cups in N. E. Portland.
There are 73 grooming and boarding combined facilities and 18 dog training and obedience combined facilities in the Portland area. Noah’s Arf offers complete and total services at one location. One-stop high-quality pet care for customer convenience.
3.3 Sales Literature
This business will begin with a general corporate brochure establishing offered services. This brochure will be developed as part of the start-up expenses and distributed to large businesses, restaurants, local veterinarians, pet stores, real estate agencies, fire departments, The Humane Society, and the Washington Park Zoo. There will be a direct mailing to registered pet owners and a website created.
Literature and mailing for the initial market forums will be very important, with the need to establish a high-quality look and feel in order to create a trusting sense of professionalism.
Noah’s Arf will maintain the latest Windows and Internet capabilities including complete email capabilities on the Internet to work directly with clients for reservations, purchasing products online, asking questions, providing information, etc., as well as a Web page will provide information and maximum exposure of available services.
3.5 Future Products and Services
ONE YEAR GROWTH PLAN
Veterinarian technician on staff to administer vaccinations on specified days and tend to any unforeseen emergencies.
Internet access to watch your pet online.
Weekly play hour.
Espresso and juice bar.
Expand the number of overnight kennels by 10.
Mobil pet wash–will go to pet owners home to wash their pets.
Sell and distribute gifts and products online.
Add an exercise pool.
Combine facility with a local veterinarian.
Expand the number of overnight kennels by 10.
Market Analysis Summary
Noah’s Arf will focus on dual-income, traveling professional families with hectic schedules. Those trying to strike a balance between the demands of their careers, personal lives and their pets. Our most important group of customers are those who do not have as much time as they desire to invest in their pets and are willing to seek additional help regardless of costs.
Two years ago, doggie day care did not exist in Portland. Today, there are eight such centers complete with entrance requirements and waiting lists.
4.1 Target Market Segment Strategy
We will not be successful waiting for the customer to come to us. Instead, we must focus on the specific market segments whose needs match our offerings. Focusing on targeted segments is the key to our future. Therefore, our focus and marketing message will be the services offered. We will develop our message, communicate it, and fulfill our commitment to excellence.
4.2 Market Needs
Our target customers are pet owners, not restricted to only one pet per household. They are working professionals that need reliable, trusting and convenient pet care available to them to keep up with the demands of their hectic schedules. There is a need for one-stop convenience.
4.2.1 Market Trends
Today’s trend consists of professionals having their families later in life or deciding not to have children at all. Pet owners are increasingly treating their pets as they would their children. Pets aren’t just part of the family anymore. In some cases they are the family. They are willing to invest dollars to have them cared for in an environment that would mirror their home surroundings.
Another important workplace trend is working longer hours and more days. There is also the traveling professional. Professionals are looking for help to care for their pets in a loving playful daycare. There is a need to have pets cared for over long periods of time while their owners are away on business trips. Downtown and condominium living has also become very popular for professionals. This creates the need to provide a daily exercise and a playful environment for their pets.
In 1998, the amount of money Americans spend on dog food totaled $5.9 billion. America’s hottest new publication is The Bark, a monthly publication for dog owners. Portland has their own publication, Dog Nose News. Hotel chains are encouraging pet owners to bring their pets to stay in their hotels.
4.2.2 Market Growth
The benefits of sharing our lives with our pets offers owners affection, companionship and security. For busy families, professionals and single pet owners, Noah’s Arf offers a peace of mind alternative to leaving their pets home alone. Over 350,000 Portland Metro households have dogs, according to the Dog Nose News. The nation’s 58 million pet owners spent an estimated 22.7 billion on their pets in 1999 according to the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council.
A 1998 American Animal Hospital Association survey of pet owners who took their animals to a vet, found that nearly one-third said they spend more time with their pets than with their friends. Animals are playing a larger role in our lives and working people are choosing to provide them with a good life, according to the director of community programs at the San Francisco Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
Pet owners can be confident that their pets are in the best of hands at Noah’s Arf. Pets can socialize with buddies, revel in attention from expert care givers, and enjoy play activities.
4.3 Service Business Analysis
The animal care service industry consists of many small individual facilities. Noah’s Arf direction is to establish itself as a full-service, 24-hour facility, creating customer convenience.
4.3.1 Business Participants
The animal care industry is made up of many small participants that are function-specific. These businesses offer one or two services. There are no businesses that offer full care, including day care, overnight care and in-home care for 24 hours a day. Current facilities have limited hours, causing a great inconvenience for the customer. Noah’s Arf will change these trends and offer “one stop convenience” for all their pet needs.