No, most states have no provision for “pet sitting.”
Is pet sitting taxable?
No. If you live in a state that allows “exercise” in order to qualify a service you are required to complete a written certification form that explains how your qualifying service will be used in order to demonstrate your fitness for work.
Do I have to pay income tax on pet sitting?
No – a service you perform for your pet (called “exercise”) or do it to meet your responsibilities as a pet owner is not taxable. If your service qualifies for tax deductions, then it is tax deductible.
The IRS will not require you to notify a local tax office of your income tax exemption. There are exceptions to this rule. However, some states will assess the proper state tax on pet sitting activities.
Do states do business with pet owners?
Some states have laws that give the pet sitters a legal right to do business with their clients. If your work with a pet satisfies these legal requirements, the state is generally not required to collect any business taxes on it.
What about the cost of providing pet sitting services?
If your practice satisfies the above legal requirements then the cost of pet sitting is an expense that you are able and expected to control. It is not likely your clients will notice a reduction.
Many pet sitters charge their clients hourly fees for their pet sitting services. A simple calculation: (the number of hours performed multiplied by the hourly cost of service multiplied to the nearest whole cent.) As with any other expense, it is better to determine what it is you are spending your time doing rather than what it is the client is paying for.
What is pet sitting not?
Pet sitting is not a “treating disease,” “doggy time,” or a form of child abuse. There are no legal requirements for you to care for your animal. In some states it is common practice for families and individuals to offer pet sitting services to other family members or friends.
You may not collect any fees for pet sitting (i.e., your clients are not required to pay you for the services). For that reason, the federal government does not regulate pet sitting in most states.
Other services may not be taxable provided they meet the legal requirements below.
What legal requirements do I need to satisfy for the business to be taxed?
Pet sitters in these states should:
Obtain a certification
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