Dog treats are, and likely always will be, in high demand – at least in the United States. An estimated 70% of American households have a pet in them and people want the best for their pets, which definitely includes quality, delicious treats.
The pet food industry alone brings in about 66 billion yearly, per 2020 statistical analysis, and around 21 billion of that income fell into the ‘Pet Treats and Snacks’ category.
With more people being born every day who will eventually own their own pets, the dog treat market is arguably one of the few that is not only always going to be strong, but which gets stronger every year!
We’ve collected the most popular questions on this lucrative market, fresh and trending as you read this now! Read on to find out important information, such as whether or not dog treats are taxable, what sort of profit margin you should aim for with your treats, and more.
Let’s take a look at the questions everyone is asking about dog treats and successfully marketing them!
Table of Contents
- Is there a good market for dog treats?
- How do I start selling dog treats?
- Can I make and sell dog treats from home?
- What is the profit margin I should target with dog treats?
- How do you scale a dog treat business?
- Can I sell dog treats on Facebook?
- What industry is dog treats in?
- Do dog treats need to be made in a commercial kitchen?
- Are dog treats taxable?
- How Long Will homemade dog treats last?
Is there a good market for dog treats?
Most definitely YES. Approximately 68% to 70% of Americans own pets and the ‘Dog Food and Snacks’ market was collectively valued at over 66 billion in 2020 alone – with dog treats falling around 21 billion of that total.
As time progresses, there are more people, and thus statistically there are more pets, so dog treats will arguably always be in high demand.
How do I start selling dog treats?
In order to get started, you will need to be licensed in your area to sell your treats. Typically this will just mean a business license, but check your local and state laws – on occasion a licensed, commercial kitchen is required for preparation, but this is uncommon.
Aside from this, you’ll need to be licensed for the states that you are selling to, though you can start off simply marketing to Canada – Canadian laws will allow you to ship your dog treats there, provided that you meet the legal requirements to sell them in your home location.
Aside from online vending, you can also sell at local Flea markets and Farmer’s markets as well!
Can I make and sell dog treats from home?
Yes, you don’t need to rent a building to make your dog treats, in most cases you can simply bake or otherwise prepare them at home and then market completely online or through a combination of online and local venue sales.
If you are willing to put in the work to build up a roster of happy, repeat customers, it can be a profitable way to make some extra cash and to keep your own dogs supplied with treats in the bargain!
What is the profit margin I should target with dog treats?
When you are selling your treats, you want to target a minimum profit margin of 30%. This will be the amount that you earn after selling fees (for physical or online venues), shipping, raw materials, and tax (in states where applicable).
The average markups are around 35%, and some even go as high as 45%, so be sure to experiment to maximize your profits as much as you can!
How do you scale a dog treat business?
If you are looking to scale your dog treat business into a full-time affair to maximize your profits, expect to be working a minimum of 30 to 35 hours in a week, sometimes more.
This will include maintaining your online shop, shipping goods, and maintaining a presence at local venues such as Farmer’s markets, dog events, and flea markets where you will be selling your treats.
It’s not easy to get started, but if you are consistently out there selling your goods, you’ll build a profitable roster of returning clientele to help your business to succeed!
Can I sell dog treats on Facebook?
Yes, you can and definitely should try to sell your treats on Facebook. To do this, search for local dog groups and groups in the regions that you sell to, and be sure to check their terms for joining – this is important as some groups will ban you and possibly even report you if you try to sell there.
Once you’ve found approved groups, then you can advertise and make friends and you can definitely drum up a lot of business this way once people start talking about how much their own doggies love your dog treats!
What industry is dog treats in?
Technically, dog treats fall under the parent group of the ‘Pet Foods’ industry, specifically in their own sub-group of “Pet Snacks and Treats”. This is a good industry to be part of, as it only seems to grow every year and it’s a market worth billions!
With 68% to 70% of Americans having a pet in their household, that kind of capital certainly makes sense, so a home pet treats business is a good idea if you’ve got the talent, work ethic, and the patience to build up your business and join this industry’s ranks!
Do dog treats need to be made in a commercial kitchen?
Generally, no, but there are exceptions. Most commonly, a licensed and commercial kitchen for preparation is only going to be required when preparing human foods.
That said, dog treats can fall into a bit of a gray area, so it’s best to doublecheck local laws and the laws for other states or countries where you will be marketing your products. In most cases, however, a commercial kitchen is not going to be required for selling dog treats.
Are dog treats taxable?
Taxes are another gray area when it comes to dog treats so you need to check on a state-by-state basis. For example, in Florida human food is not taxed, but dog food and treats are definitely taxed.
As there is no centralized way of registering for all states, nor a specific taxation scheme for all dog treats, you need to find out in advance the tax rules for any items that you will shipping to another state.
It is best to hire a lawyer when you are setting up distribution, or you could simply market to Canada – who only requires that you be legally authorized to sell your pet treats in your home city and state.
How Long Will homemade dog treats last?
Dehydrated, home doggie biscuits usually last 2 to 3 weeks, and most homemade treats will last about 2 months in your refrigerator. In the freezer, with an airtight container or a vacuum seal they can last even longer, sometimes up to as much as 8 months of a little over.
Just be sure to box your frozen treats and mark the date so that you may rotate stock properly as your orders start rolling in.