How to Make Money Picking Up Poop

Are you looking for a business opportunity that doesn’t require a lot of start up capital but has plenty of room for growth? 

Have you considered picking up dog poop? 

Don’t laugh…I’m serious!  Dog waste removal is a growing market that is still largely untapped.  There’s still time for you to get in on the ground floor and build a profitable business for yourself.  And all you really need to get started is a shovel and some plastic bags.

According to The Humane Society of the United States, thirty-nine percent of US households own at least one dog.  That’s a lot of poop that needs to be cleaned up.  Smart people like you can really clean up by picking up after other people’s pets.

Here are some tips to help you get your pooper scooper business started:

1. The first thing you should do is call your town and find out about business licenses and regulations regarding the removal of waste.  It’s important to make sure you don’t inadvertently break any laws.

2.  Start small.  Ideally you want to have a whole bunch of clients all in one neighborhood so you can limit fuel costs and commuting time.

3.  Promoting your business is absolutely essential if you want to be successful.  Most dog owners probably don’t even know that poop-scooping services are available so you’ll have to get the word out.  Try making flyers and posting them around your neighborhood.  Ask local veterinarians and animal shelters if you can post a flyer in their offices.  And once you land a few clients you can start asking for referrals.  You might even want to offer a discount to clients who bring you business.

4.  Try to map out a schedule and stick to it.  Especially if you are starting your business part-time, you’ll need to manage your time efficiently.  Set certain days as “pickup” days and leave the rest of the time to administrative duties and promotion to bring in new business.

5.  Check out your competitors to see what kind of prices they charge.  Prices will vary from one region to the next so you’ll want to be sure your rates are competitive.

6.  Provide an excellent service.  If you do a crappy job you won’t be invited back.  But if you do good work you can build long term relationships with customers and also reap the benefits of referrals.

Running your own pooper scooper business may not be the most glamorous way to make money but it can be very profitable if you’re willing to get your hands dirty (no pun intended).

This post is part of my continuing series on ways to make money.  To receive free updates so you don’t miss future posts you can subscribe to my RSS feed.

4 Comments so far

  1. […] How to Make Money Picking Up Poop @ Saving Money Today […]

  2. Mrs. Accountability on March 8th, 2010

    There is a guy in the small city nearest to where I live that has one of those tiny little cars – Smart Two – I think they are called. Anyway, he has it wrapped with his business logo and he is a pooper scooper. I always chuckle when I see his little bitty car.

  3. Mike on March 8th, 2010

    I never saw businesses like this when I was growing up, but I’ve been spotting flyers for a few different pooper scooper businesses all over. Maybe with unemployment high people are just looking for new ways to make ends meet.

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting. :)

  4. Jessica on September 14th, 2010

    It is a good business to help keep our environment clean. I pick up my dogs poop myself using ScooperGenie pooper scooper. It is easy and clean. I have to pay for the bags, but can pick up more than one poop with one bag. Couple of times a week I go to the backyard and using one bag I pick up all the poops. I have a 21lb pug.

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