Business

Doggy daycare industry thrives

Retail sales may have fallen last Christmas1, but Australians still value the wellbeing of their pets, if a recent survey by Hanrob Pet Hotels is anything to go by, with an increasing number of Aussie Pet Owners turning to doggy daycare when they’re away from the home.

Having surveyed their database of 50,000+ Australian pet owners, Hanrob found that an overwhelming 80% of respondents preferred to leave their pet in the company of other humans and pets, than leave them home alone. And, while home service providers such as pet sitters and dog walkers have exploded in recent years, pet owners are still opting for doggy daycare services delivered by qualified professionals.

PET PROFESSIONALS

“Our survey clearly demonstrated the value pet owners place on professionally trained staff,” says Andrew Biggs, CEO at Hanrob Pet Hotels. “Just six per cent of respondents stated they prefer home services such as pet sitters and dog walkers over a professionally-delivered doggy daycare service.”

Indeed, the survey showed that one of the barriers to enrolling pets in daycare was concern over qualifications of pet professionals – not having confidence leaving their pets with unqualified providers.

“As a registered training organisation, we are able to provide all our staff with the training and qualifications they need to not only deliver an outstanding service, but to advance their careers in the pet services industry,” says Andrew, who operates six doggy daycare facilities in Australia.

“One of the reasons we believe doggy daycare at Hanrob is so popular is because our staff are professionals – something that was backed up in this survey. Dog owners want to know their daycare provider is trained and qualified to care for their pets and that the provider’s reputation is high quality.”

The survey also highlighted what Aussie pet owners value in their doggy daycare service, placing the most value on access to outdoor space, group play time for their pets to socialise, and outdoor nature walks through the day.

CONVENIENCE IS KEY

But, when it comes to choosing their doggy daycare provider, convenience is key, with 47% of respondents who do not currently use a doggy daycare service stating inflexible hours or daycare facilities and the fact there is no daycare centre in their area as the main barriers to daycare enrolment. Indeed, 81% of existing daycare customers stating they selected their daycare provider based on proximity to their home or work address.

“We all lead busy lives – mornings can be frantic enough when you’re trying to catch a train or drop the kids at school – there isn’t enough time to drop your pet at their daycare as well,” says Andrew. “With 70% of respondents stating they’d use a home pick up and drop off service, our survey clearly highlights the fact pet owners demand convenience, allowing them to accommodate the wellbeing of their pet, whilst fitting in with their busy lives.”

While Hanrob Daycare centres already offer extended opening hours, customers can soon look forward to the added convenience of home pick up and drop offs, with trained Hanrob pet taxi drivers collecting pets from 6am and transporting them in air conditioned, custom-fitted pet taxis to their daycare centre.

“We’ve been operating a nation-wide fleet of pet taxis for more than 30 years, collecting pets from our vet partners and transporting them in comfort and safety to our pet hotels while their owners are away,” Andrew says. “We believe adding a home pick up and drop off service will ensure more dogs can socialise and enjoy professional care during the day, without having to be left home alone.”

Survey Results – Key Points

  • Convenience is key. Customers demand extended opening hours and choose their daycare based on proximity to home or work. They prefer to pay casually, as and when they need to, rather than subscribe.
  • Customers value professional service. Dog owners want to know their daycare provider is trained and qualified to care for their pets and that the provider’s reputation is high quality.
  • Customers value play time and outdoor space. The vast majority of respondents value enrichment, placing most importance on outdoor play time and nature walks.
  • Of those who do not currently use a doggy daycare service 35% state there is no suitable daycare facility in their area and 12% noted inflexible hours of daycare facilities
  • The most important considerations when selecting a doggy daycare provider are Reputation of Provider (scored 4.61 out of 5) and Professionally Trained Staff (scored 4.61). Pet owners also value access to outdoor space (score 4.42) and proximity to home address (4.2) is more important than proximity to work address (3.3)

Source: Hanrob Pty Ltd

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