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App turns San Diego County yards into private dog parks

App turns San Diego County yards into private dog parks
Posted at 3:25 PM, Nov 10, 2022

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - With the continuing pain of inflation, some San Diegans are looking to their yards to make some extra money.

On a Thursday morning in David Taylor's backyard in Poway, which features a pond, five dogs are having themselves a good time.

“It’s just so much energy. It’s very entertaining,” said Taylor.

None of the pooches belong to Taylor.

The dog mom, Marina, is renting the spot for her fur babies.

She and Taylor got connected on the app Sniffspot, where anyone with a yard, can turn their space into a dog park, by the hour.

“It’s always good to have extra income,” said Taylor.

On the app, hosts set their own rates. Taylor rents out his space for $11 a dog per hour, with discounted rates for additional dogs.

Sniffspot claims about 25% in commission and fees.

David Adams started the Massachusetts-based company in 2018.

“A lot of people don't like public dog parks. They don’t work for them … You really want to have a different option, which is what Sniffspot serves,” said Adams.

Reviews are posted for the sites. The rentals include $2 million in insurance for the hosts.

When it comes to revenues, San Diego is Sniffspot's 5th largest market. It's also one of the fastest-growing markets. There are 38 hosts signed up, a more than 200% increase year to year.

Weather is one factor, combined with a lot of urban dog owners in search of exercise for their dogs and unique outdoor spaces.

“The early adopter was a person avoiding dog parks. Now many are using the app because there are better options than dog parks,” said Adams.

Adams says the average host makes several hundred dollars a month. Taylor, whose property is usually booked on weekends, earns about $2,000 every month.

"If you are trying to scrounge up extra money every week, makes it tough, but a little extra income just makes things a little less stressful,” said Taylor.

To host, you can be a homeowner or renter. Dog owners also have to sign a waiver for any issues that arise.