Parting with one’s pooch is something most pet parents dread, so much so that many owners are now taking them wherever they go — including on holiday. Research shows that over half (56%) of dog owners now opt to bring their dog with them on trips away, with 40% thinking that “the dog deserves a holiday too” and 22% claiming they wouldn’t enjoy their own trip otherwise.
This means the demand for dog-friendly Airbnb properties is rising. The number of dog-friendly listings in the UK skyrocketed by 95% between 2019 and 2021, and not only are they convenient for customers, but potentially profitable for property owners too. Pet-friendly properties generate 28% more bookings and 30% more revenue on average than their non-pet-friendly counterparts.
With that in mind, here are three trips on catering to canines with your own Airbnb listing:
1. Modify your listing
Not only should your listing make it clear that your property is dog-friendly via the description and pictures, but it should also include pet-specific guidelines for guests. Because Airbnb doesn’t enforce standard pet policies itself, it’s up to you as the property owner to have your own. This will include conditions that your guest must agree to when making a booking, such as:
- Which types of dog you allow — for example, many hosts don’t allow those that shed lots of fur or are extremely active
- How many dogs you allow — is there a maximum number that you want in your home?
- Pet responsibility and safety waivers
- Property damage liability
- Any other ground rules, like if certain areas (such as a pool area or bedrooms) are out of bounds
Writing a winning Airbnb listing is easier said than done, which is why more people are relying on Airbnb property management companies to help them out. Take Frank Porter, for instance, whose “in-house writing team and professional photography team will create the perfect profile to appeal to guests.” This ensures that your listing is not only both enticing and clear to pet owners, but highlights your property’s top features to help it attract utmost attention.
2. Get your property ready
You need to pet proof your property to reduce the chance of damage to your home and to keep your furry guests safe. Things to consider include:
- Getting stain and scratch-resistant flooring fitted
- Choosing pet-friendly furniture fabrics, like microfibre or canvas
- Installing baby gates for areas that are out of bounds to dogs
- Keeping bins sealed or locked away to prevent dogs from digging into them
- Providing extra linen and sheets for emergencies
- Adding a dog kennel with run
There are also certain amenities that you can provide to make your guest’s (and their dog’s) stays as smooth as possible. For instance, you could provide:
- Dog treats
- Water bowls
- Dog beds
- Poo bags
3. Update your pricing and insurance
Although having a dog-friendly Airbnb listing can be extremely profitable, it’s important to remember that this kind of property is typically more expensive for the owner. From the extra amenities and cleaning costs, to the added risk of property damage, it’s highly recommended that you tweak both your pricing and insurance policy to reflect this.
When it comes to your pricing, it’s common to add a pet fee whenever a pet stays — owners charge around $25 (£20) on average. In terms of your insurance, it’s important that your policy covers damage caused by pets, or you could end up forking out for repair costs yourself. Check with your current provider if this is included in your existing policy, and if not, update it accordingly. If you have Airbnb’s own Air Cover insurance, then there’s no need to worry as you’re already covered for pet damage.