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How to Start a Petting Zoo Business

written by: riverstyxshow1•edited by: Ginny Edwards•updated: 9/15/2010

In this article we're going to discuss what would be required to start your own petting zoo business. This will include all of your overhead expenditures as well as what you're going to need to charge to make a profit.

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    Your Guide on How to Start a Petting Zoo Business

    goat0191 If you're going to learn how to start a petting zoo business there are a few things that you're going to need and a few things to consider before even starting. In this guide we're going to discuss what those things are step by step.

    1. Laws

    Before even venturing into any business regarding animals, you want to find out what the laws in your local area are. You're going to need to find out what kind of animal you can have in your area and what permits you need to keep them. Find out if you need any special permits for the specific animals that you're going to have. More often than not petting zoos keep domestic and cattle animals as to reduce the risk of bodily injury from a more exotic animal.

    2. Property

    If you want to open up a petting zoo business then you want to make sure you have purchased property to put it on. If you only plan to do this seasonally then you're going to want to rent your land. If you plan on doing it all year around you're going to want to either get a sub lease or buy your land flat out. Sub leasing would mean that the owner of the land gets a percentage of the profits. Figure out what kind of petting zoo you're going to have and find out what kind of land you're going to need.

    3. Food

    No matter what kind of animals you're going to have you want to make sure that you have the food to feed all of them. This means that you're going to have to figure out what each animal you have eats and be sure to keep it on hand. Not only are you going to want to feed them regular food, but you're going to want to make sure that you have treats for people to feed to them, during their entry. This would be similar to providing bread crumbs for people wanting to feed ducks. This is also a good way to make an extra profit along with the price of admission.

    4. Fencing

    Typically having fences for your animals would go without saying. If you're going to have a petting zoo you need to figure out which animals can coexist and which cannot. If all of your animals coexist in nature than you're not going to have a problem, however if they do not then you're going to want to make sure you make separate enclosures for each one of the animals or else you may have a problem on your hands.

    5. The bottom line

    When it comes to any business you're in it to make a profit. After you've calculated each one of your expenses you want to make sure that you're making a profit. To find out what your overhead actually is take the information above and find out how much each animals is costing you in overhead individually. After you've figured out how much each animals costs you to house for one day take that amount and multiply it by three, this is the amount that you should charge for admittance. Cost of business multiplied by three is typical business model for both retail and service.

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