What value do we deliver?
Laikadog provides nothing but the best in professional pet services. (Period- get it?).
Timing is Everything
We were set to announce our new 2020 prices on the 28th of March 2020. Surprise! Suddenly, the nationwide lockdown occurred which started on the 26th March, before we could do so. To announce price increases during this time was just not fitting for the situation.
Since our launch in August 2016, we've yet to update our prices. Not once. WHAT? So why the sudden announcement of new prices? Our services were initially priced very competitively and we've kept them at this level to gain market share fast. As we believe in providing excellent services at a fair value, our pricing was aligned with our offerings. However, as we grew, so did the size of the team, we've improved the quality of our offerings, we're hiring more selectively, managing costs increased, and the value we offered far outweighed our low pice (crazy), not to mention the cost of inflation. So, due to the current value we provide, we've adjusted our pricing for sustainability.
What is fair pricing? Pricing that benefits you, your animals and the supplier offering the services. In 2016 when we launched there was uncertainty over the structure of pet service rates. An individual sitter would charge a certain amount per day, without much specification to what a day entails or when it starts. An example is if you had to pay someone R300 per day for a pet sitting. Does that include the day, then a sleepover, then the next morning? What if the sitting starts at 20:30 as I can only leave then, would I pay R 300 just for someone to sleep over to the morning? Every sitter had their own rules, preferences and structures. Most of our clients only required a sitter overnight (ex. from 17:00 to 08:00) and private sitter rates would be expensive ranging between R250- R300 a day. So, to create a cheaper and more valuable option we started using overnight (only) sittings at R 249 per night. Cheaper for you, with more value of using a company than an individual. You're joking, right? Overnight sitting is common these days? Not back then, as evidenced by the infinite times we had to explain the concept. "Overnight-only what?". Cue the explanation.
New to the Pet Services Industry?
Is this your first time you are making use of a pet sitter, or dog walker? If yes, we suggest reading the following, otherwise, skip to the next section.
Hi, and welcome! It's great that you decided to make use of a pet sitter, walker or someone to visit your home. Selecting a pet provider is quite a daunting task but we're going to give you a quick overview to assist your decision. The pet provider industry mainly consists of the following providers:
- Individual providers (such as your neighbour, friend or colleague).
- Professional providers (Companies specializing in pet services like us).
- Online service providers with a variety of services (ex. Errandworld).
Choosing which option is best for you depends on a variety of factors and your needs. When using an individual sitter it is important to remember that even though you might know them well and trust who they are, they might not have the experience in taking care of dogs. (For greater clarity of some of the mistakes new users make, see the next article which will be published shortly). However, if you prefer to receive amazing professional services, using a company like us is your best choice. Accordingly, the price might be a bit higher due to a premium that facilitates high service quality, and service guarantees, such as the training that we provide, 24/7 accessibility and backup to sitters, random quality checks, and team management. (Ironically we might be more cost-effective than some individuals).
Are we Expensive?
Yes, but no. We offer premium professional pet services, but at fair value pricing.
How do we compare to other services?
If this is an option for you, kennel rates in the Somerset West area range between R 280 a night during low season and R460 a night during high season. In contrast to us, you pay slightly more, and you don't have someone protecting and taking care of your home (ex. watering plants and feeding fishes), not to mention your dog can be more comfortable.
The prices for an individual provider such as someone that lives down your street, friend or colleague, can vary greatly. Generally, they charge what they think their worth in terms of time, and can range from being very cost-effective ex. R 50 walk to overpriced levels ex. R 200 per walk for one dog. It's worth remembering that their level of price does not always match their service capabilities. Not to mention, with an individual provider you have to do the admin of finding and screening providers, perform possible checkups, finding alternative sitters for future bookings if they are not available and re-giving all your information to providers.
For pet sittings, a private sitter could range between R 150, to and upwards of R 450 + for an overnight sitting. Rival companies in Cape Town for example range between R 270 to R350 a night, however with a walk included, and increase with the number of dogs. Having 3 dogs will start at R 350 a night and become cheaper with the number of days you book. As not everyone needs walks, we priced our overnight sits (R 269 per night) to create more value for our clients, and we don't charge per amount of dogs.
For dog walks, a private person could range between R 50 to and upwards of R 200 a walk. Rival companies start at R 110 per walk and increase for factors like working on weekends and the number of dogs. If you have 3 dogs ONE WALK, can be R 190. Our rate is R 109 per walk up to 35 mins or R 119 up to 45 mins, regardless of the number of dogs (that we can walk simultaneously) or peak time surcharges.
For dog and home visits, a private person's value could vary based on a variety of factors such as your relationship with the person ex. being a friend, but could range between R 50 and R 250 a visit. Rival companies start at R80/R100 and range to R 140 per visit. There's much ambiguity around a visit times. Ask anyone and they will say the time varies per client. Our data suggests we perform most services in less than R 35 mins and if needed 45 mins. Thus, to create more value, we split our visits into short (R 109 per visit) and long ones (R 119 per visit), making the base visit amount cheaper, and creating value for anyone not needing 45 mins, such as the case with cats. Our 2 x visits a day of R 199 for 35 mins and R 219 for 45 mins is designed to support clients using the cheaper visits option during COVID times, and would most probably return to the flat rate multiplied twice for the day rate in the future.
Day or Night Care
For an alternative or supplement to doggie daycare, our sitters staying at your home during the day or night for a specific amount of hours is a great option. Doggie daycare rates range between R145 to R180 a day. Although our rates on the sliding scale are higher, they are designed to be used for any time ex. 16:00 to 23:30, for uses like needing a puppy sitter for a few hours (ex.attending a wedding and you don't want to leave your pup at a kennel), dogs
that need medical attention or dogs that are not allowed at kennels (ex. aggressive dogs).
Although the admin cost of vet trips that occur during a service like a sitting, walk or visit is included in our prices, we also perform vet trips on an as-needed basis. For those days where you cannot make a certain appointment time, you are on holiday and your dog at home needs vet assistance, or an unforeseen emergency and you are unable to take them, we'll assist. We hold their hand (paw) through the entire vet journey of pickup, checkup, and drop-off at home, so they are relaxed, supported and loved. It's R 169 per vet round trip within 4km of your home to drop-off, stay with them during the checkup, and if they have to stay there, pickup later in, or the next day.
We provide in-home pet grooming on request. We come to your home, and wash, shampoo, condition, cut and file their nails, trim and cut hair (ex. under paws and areas where it is too long). A grooming session is subject to a custom quote based on the dog's hair length, but is R 299 for a dog with short hair or around R 350 for two small dogs with short hair. We use hair length as price determinant as cutting paw hairs, combing, trimming, blow-drying, and precision trimming for show-dog quality of long-haired dogs takes a longer time than a quick shampoo, condition and trim.
Should you use a Company that Prices Fairly?
We design our prices around your needs. We listen, and you receive. As explained earlier we trimmed the fat you don't need and supplemented you with healthy value. By not charging per dog, weekend surge rates, including walks as default, or charging by the amount booked, our base rate is lower, but you receive high-quality services. We're always striving to create the best services, and that starts with your investment in us. What do you think? Feel free to comment below or let us know on social media.