Alison Chan Income Report




Pet Supplies

Revenue Models

Marketplace, Service Business

Alison Chan's Doggy Daycare Delight racks up $32,000 boarding pets on Rover while studying for the bar exam

Hey, have you heard about Alison Chan? She’s got a story that might just give you some ideas. So, two summers back, she faced a dilemma. Alison, fresh from law school, had to quit her job to ace the bar exam. But let’s be real – bills wait for no one.

Making Ends Meet with Four Paws and a Wag

  • Gotta pay the bills: Rent, car payments, and caring for Addy – her dog.
  • Savvy solution? She turned to Rover to board dogs at her place.
  • The result? A cool $32K in 2022 and an average of $3.75K per month this year!

You know what they say about spending money to make money? Well, Alison dishes out around $250/month on pooch perks, like gourmet chow and snuggly beds. It helps her charge top dollar compared to others in Chicago’s South Loop.

A Balancing Act: Full-Time Job Meets Side Hustle

What’s crazy cool is that she kept her full-time gig while studying! Now working remotely as a paralegal, she uses her Rover earnings for daily expenses and stashes away her salary. Talk about smart financial moves!

Finding Her Price Point & Setting Boundaries

Raising the stakes from $35 overnight stays wasn’t just about profit; it was survival of the fittest…or in this case, most adorable. Rover takes their cut too – 20%, just so you know.

Rover Routine Mastery

“Is your furball crate trained?” “Ever shown its teeth more than when it yawns?” “Okay chilling solo for a bit?”

The answers help Alison keep chaos at bay while juggling work with wrangling pups.

Earnings & Expansion

Nearly doubling income between ’21-’22? Check. Charging around $80/night now? Check. Boarding up to three dogs plus drop-in walks? Oh yeah!

“It’s not just about the money; it’s like these dogs and their humans are family,” says Chan.

If this story got your gears turning or made you smile thinking of all those tail-waggers – that’s awesome!

How It Works: Starting Your Own Pet Care Side Hustle

Initial Setup

  1. Identifying the Opportunity: Assess your personal circumstances to determine if you can accommodate pet care alongside other commitments.
  2. Market Research: Conduct local research to understand the demand and existing competition in pet care services.
  3. Create a Profile: Sign up on a pet care platform like Rover and set up an engaging profile highlighting your services.
  4. Pricing Strategy: Set competitive rates based on the market research. Remember to account for additional costs like food, treats, and bedding.

Daily Management

  • Scheduling: Define clear time slots for drop-offs and pick-ups to align with your daily routine, ensuring minimal disruption to other responsibilities.
  • Pet Screening: Implement a process for assessing new pets with questions about behavior, training, and specific needs to ensure compatibility.
  • Maintaining Supplies: Regularly stock up on essential supplies like dog food, treats, beds, and toys that are attractive for clients’ pets.
  • Increase Value: Offer amenities that justify higher pricing compared to competitors; these could be high-quality treats or additional services like photo updates.

Growing the Business

To grow your side hustle into a substantial source of income:

  • Broaden Services Offered: Expand beyond boarding by including dog walking or attending clients’ events as a dog nanny.



  • Financial Benefits: The opportunity provides a dual-income stream, allowing individuals to maintain their primary job while earning additional income through the side hustle, which can be significant enough to operate like a second salary.
  • Lifestyle Advantages: Flexibility in setting boundaries and schedules enables individuals to integrate this business with personal commitments and full-time employment without compromising on work-life harmony.
  • Scalability: There is potential for growth by establishing a strong reputation and client base, which can lead to increased rates and scalability of services offered.
  • Fostering Relationships: Building relationships with clients and their pets can offer emotional rewards alongside financial gains, nurturing a sense of community and repeat business.
  • Control Over Operations: Entrepreneurs can employ strategic decision-making regarding pricing, services offered, and client interaction to optimize their business model for better profitability and satisfaction.


  • Financial Risks: Starting a pet care side hustle involves upfront costs, such as for pet supplies and a service fee to the platform, which is a significant 20% of each transaction.
  • Time Investment: Initially, it takes time to establish a routine and figure out pricing that covers expenses and generates profit, as experienced by Alison Chan over a year and a half.
  • Property Damage: Potential for damage to personal property from pets, leading to additional unexpected costs if the animals are not well-behaved or crate trained.
  • Limited Scalability: The number of pets one can board is restricted by space in the home and ability to maintain quality of care, which can limit income potential.
  • Balancing Act: Juggling this side hustle with a full-time job requires setting strict boundaries and dedicated time slots for managing pet care activities alongside professional responsibilities.

Income Generation Platforms Used by Alison Chan


  • Direct Income Use: Yes, Alison Chan uses Rover, a pet care platform, to generate direct income by boarding dogs in her home.
  • Chan started her dog-boarding side hustle three years ago and earned $32,000 in 2022.
  • This year she’s on track to earn an average of $3,750 per month.
  • To provide top-notch service and justify higher charges than competitors, she includes amenities like dog food, treats, and beds.
  • The side hustle complements her full-time job by taking care of monthly expenses and boosting her savings.

Juggling Multiple Tasks Effectively

Despite the initial underpricing and learning curve regarding boundary settings and business models:

  • Alison learned to set limits after an incident with a client’s dog causing damage to her apartment.
  • She has fine-tuned her operations to offer services such as overnight stays at about $80 per night, accommodating up to three dogs concurrently.
  • Rover services also extend beyond boarding; Alison offers dog walking, drop-in visits at pets’ homes, and even pet nannying at clients’ events such as weddings.

Understanding Revenue Generation in Pet Care Services

Industry Overview

The pet care service industry encompasses a variety of activities, including dog boarding, walking, and additional services such as pet-sitting during special occasions. Individuals or businesses in this sector typically utilize digital platforms to connect with pet owners who require these services.

Key Activities for Revenue

  • Dog Boarding: Offering a comfortable stay for pets while owners are away.
  • Pet Sitting: Caring for pets at the owner’s residence.
  • Dog Walking: Providing exercise and companionship to canines.
  • Add-On Services: Specialized care such as attending clients’ events with their pets.

Pricing Strategy

To remain competitive and profitable within the industry, setting appropriate prices is vital. This involves analyzing market rates and accounting for the value of exclusive amenities provided. Higher quality services justify premium pricing.

Initial Investment Estimation

The initial investment for starting a venture in the pet care service industry may vary greatly but includes essential expenditures such as:

  • Licensing and insurance costs
  • Marketing efforts to establish presence on relevant platforms or create a personal website
  • Supplies including quality food, treats, toys, and dog beds if boarding is offered

Note that platform fees (around 20%) must be factored into profit calculations when using third-party services to acquire clientele.

Rationale Behind Cost Estimations:

– The cost of supplies helps ensure animal comfort and owner satisfaction, contributing to higher rates charged. “Spend money to make money,” as they say.

– Investing in marketing early on aids in building clientele more rapidly.

A presence is not built overnight—visibility takes effort (and a bit of cash)

Essential Tools and Services for a Dog Boarding Venture

Digital Platforms

  • Pet care service application (e.g., Rover)
  • Social media profiles for promotion and updates
  • Payment processing systems

Business Management

  • Accounting software for tracking income and expenses
  • Scheduling software for appointments and client management
  • Photo sharing tools to update clients on their pets’ well-being

Client Relations & Communication

    • Email system for bookings, inquiries, and feedback collection
    • Messaging apps to communicate with pet owners in real-time


Regular communication builds trust with clients.

Pet Care Supplies & Amenities

A solid array of supplies is instrumental in ensuring a pleasant stay for the boarded dogs. These provisions might cost a pretty penny, but they’re essential.

Dog nourishment:

– Premium dog food brands – Assorted treats to cater to all pooches’ tastes – Fresh water dispensers – Sturdy chew toys – Various sizes of beds – Blankets or comfort items

Dog hygiene products:

– Waste bags – Cleaning supplies

Pet First Aid:

– Basic first-aid kit tailored for dogs

Furnishings & Equipment:The nitty-gritty essentials that keep everything ticking along smoothly.A dog crate or carrier should be available just in case. Always have leashes at the ready – we can’t let Fido run wild!

Miscellaneous Expenses

Insurance: Professional insurance coverage is not something to skimp on. One never knows when an excited poodle decides to turn into Houdini!

The takeaway? If you’re stepping into the dog boarding game, make sure your toolkit’s brimming with these essentials. Trust me; it’ll be less “ruff” that way!

Sign up💸 for our weekly newsletter. It’s Free!

Revenue Type

Side Hustle




Full Time

Last Updated