Many talented, loving people would like to enter the field of animal massage. But one of the biggest stumbling blocks for many would-be therapists is the questions of how to make a living that will both benefit animals and pay the bills.
Feline massage therapists in training will find several ways to embark on their career. Once you are ready to start working, you need a Web site, Facebook page, a Linked-In account, a phone number dedicated to your business, and business cards. Also get drop cards and flyers that give your services and charges to anyone who is interested in what you do. These don’t need to be fancy or expensive. Start with black print on a light-colored solid background with an illustration that indicates your service is for cat lovers.
With these at the ready, visit local cat groomers. Offer your services on an on-call or part-time basis. Suggest that they offer massage to their existing grooming clients and call you in when one is scheduled. If the groomer seems open to massage you can ask the groomer to offer massage to all clients on a set day each week. A sign could be put on the door or in the window announcing the day as “Massage Day”. You may want to offer massage for free on such a day for a month or so in order to let clients sample your services.
Next, flyers and drop cards in hand, visit local pet supply stores (big chain stores as well as small individually owned). Ask if you may leave a pile of flyers somewhere that patrons could pick one up. If you cannot leave flyers, this is where drop cards come in. Leave a drop card here and there around any store, in the rest room, on a restaurant table. Let locals know you live in the area and offer a distinctive service to cat lovers.
Another way to get started is to volunteer offering your services for free to cat shelters and rescues. This will enable you to prove what you can do and you will meet prospective paying clients among volunteers who usually have cats of their own at home.
Once you have some customers of your own, sublet space from another animal business: groomer, boarding kennel, pet food shop, training facility. Make it clear that you are not competition for their business but a complementary service and that sharing space with you will help their business.
For more information about feline massage and learning to be a professional animal massage therapist visit Companion Animal Massage & Bodywork.
To learn more about Animal Massage Therapy in Houston, please subscribe to this column and visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter at @petmassage.