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How to Make Dog Treats to Sell at Home & Start a Business

Written by: Ashley Bates

Last Updated on May 3, 2024 by Dogster Team

Bone and paw-shaped dog treats on cookie sheet

How to Make Dog Treats to Sell at Home & Start a Business

If there’s one thing we know about dogs, it’s that they absolutely love having as much food to eat as possible. It seems most dogs are willing to stuff just about anything in their gullet. So, you could make some pretty decent side money selling dog treats.

If you are looking into it, but you’re not really sure how to get started or whether it’s even going to be a profitable business for you, this article should help you out. We’re going to explore the different factors that go into making dog treats and discuss some creative ways you can make a fast buck.

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The 11 Tips to Start a Dog Treats Business

1. Choose Your Recipes

Initially, it’s probably best to start out with a handful of recipes and build later. Choose two to five solid recipe foundations and build on them. You can choose whatever recipes you want by following an old classic or making up one of your own. Just make sure that all ingredients you use are safe for dogs. It’s a good idea to run recipes by a vet to make sure that they are safe for dogs.

Mother Baking With Little Daughter At Home
Image Credit: Prostock-studio, Shutterstock

2. Consider Food Allergies

Food allergies are becoming more prevalent as time passes. It seems that more and more dog foods are available on the market to cater to different dietary sensitivities. Because these problems are getting more common, you have to think about the types of dogs you will cater to.

You don’t need to only make one or two treat types that meet the needs of all dogs. You can simply add a few recipes that are more allergy-friendly in case some dogs do have allergies. You need to carefully consider the types of allergies you’re trying to avoid and be ready to explain your potential customer.

If you’re going to make standard treats for healthy adult dogs with no sensitivities, you need to be very plain in your marketing. Owners with dogs who have allergies need to know upfront what is in the treats.

Plus, it saves you the hassle of having to answer a lot of questions about your products that are easily answered by the product description. If you do plan to make recipes for dogs with allergies, it is important to be as transparent as possible with the ingredients and have them listed on the packaging.

3. Know the Market

If you’re going to be selling dog treats, it is important to know the market. What is your competition like? What other cute ideas are other creators coming up with to market their products? You should know your aim before you even begin.

Competition is major, and it can make or break a business very quickly. You’re going to need to get a feel for what people are charging for their products as well as the aesthetic and advertising materials.

Beautiful young concentrated woman using digital tablet managing a bakery
Image Credit: Dorde Krstic, Shutterstock

4. Create a Business Plan

If you plan to start a business, having a business plan early on is the way to go. After all, what could give your business more structure than having a detailed plan laid out for yourself to follow?

The exact business plan you create will depend on what you hope to achieve with your business. It can be as small or big as you want it to be; you just have to know your priorities.

Are you going to distribute locally? Do you plan to ship? Will you have an online presence? Will you be doing any paid advertising? These are all different things you need to think about when making your business plan.

5. Think of a Clever Name

If you have a business, you have to give it a name! After all, would it be a business if you didn’t? You can think of something cute and creative, or come up with something basic, and easy to remember.

However, whatever you choose, make sure that it is snappy. People typically will remember things if they are shorter and more eye-catching. So remember to keep it short and sweet, and often having an indication of what the business is about in the title can help with sales.

young woman looking her laptop while holding a cup of coffee in the kitchen
Image Credit: Josep Suria, Shutterstock

6. Create Advertising Materials

It’s time to decide on your advertising materials. Are you going to create your own logo on Canva? Do you want to make business cards? Do you want to run online ads, put up physical ads in businesses, put an ad in the paper, and so on?

It’s best to think of how you want to represent yourself and your business. Advertising can really help get the word out and allow people to get to know your business before they come to you with requests.

It’s best to be very upfront and transparent with your advertising materials to save you a lot of headache. If something is misleading or it isn’t completely obvious, it can be difficult to connect with your target audience.

7. Consider Your Aesthetic

You’ll need to pick out a color scheme and the kind of logo that you would like. The entire business should have a general aesthetic, one that will be the face of your business. Do you want to make it cutesy? Would you like a more elegant vibe? The whole world is yours for the taking! Make it look however you please.

Making homemade healthy dog treats
Image Credit: Debby Lowe, Shutterstock

8. Consider a Website

Having a website can be a really lucrative way to drive sales, amplify your business, and show that you’re serious. People tend to take it more seriously when you have a tangible business appearance and lots of raving reviews!

So remember to add your testimonies from all your happy customers.

9. Spread the Word

Make sure to spread the word about your business! Word of mouth makes the news travel far and wide. You can advertise at shelters, rescues, vet offices, dog parks, you name it! The more y light you can shine on your business, the better!

So, make sure you are advocating for yourself and your yummy baking skills.

young woman and worker at a dog shelter
Image Credit: hedgehog94, Shutterstock

10. Pay for Online Advertising

Advertising can be very beneficial if you are looking to make a lot of online sales. Plus, it’s a really good way to drive more attention to your business. Paying for online ads can sometimes be pretty costly, especially if you’re not getting a lot back initially.

However, once you start to grow your business, it can be a really great way to show potential customers, promotions, and other potential savings you could offer.

11. Donate to Shelters

Donate to rescues or shelters just to get samples of your goodies out there. They can help you spread the word if they like your products, and you can work with a lot of people. It is a great way to get your name out there and help doggos in need at the same time!

After all, what pup doesn’t love a delicious snack—especially one that hasn’t yet found its forever home? They need a pick-me-up!

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Starting your own business can be pretty daunting in the beginning. But with the right steps and the right recipes, you can get your business off on the right foot. We wish you the best of luck and opening your business and hope that your dog treats appeal to even the pickiest of pooches!

Featured Image Credit: Debby Lowe, Shutterstock

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