How Much Do Dog Owners Make for Commercials?

By Kimberly Turtenwald ; Updated September 15, 2017
The money a dog actor makes typically goes into its care.

Dogs are often found in television commercials, either to sell a dog-related product or as an extra in the background. These dogs are carefully chosen from a pool of dogs that meet the director's requirements. Since dogs do not need the money they earn directly, the owner and agent for the dogs receive the money instead.

Income

The income your dog earns will vary on many different factors. One of the biggest deciding factors is the budget of the particular commercial your dog performs in. A higher-budget commercial pays better than those with a lower budget. The experience of your dog, as well as the amount of time it takes to complete the commercial also plays a role. For the most part, a dog averages between $50 and $400 for a day's work, as of 2011.

Agent Cut

In many cases, a dog owner hires an agent to help find jobs for his dog. The commercial industry can be highly competitive, and it can be difficult to find consistent work for your dog. An agent can help you find the best fit and increase the number of jobs your dog receives. At the time of publication, some agencies charge a flat fee of $25 to $50 to help find your dog a job. However, he may also take a small cut of any money your dog makes.

Dog Maintenance

When you put your dog into show business, even if it is just for a commercial or two, you commit to keeping it healthy and looking good. You will need to keep your dog bathed and groomed well so it is looking its best. You must also train your dog and acclimate it to being around many strangers while remaining calm. This doggy pampering can end up costing you about as much as your dog makes in the commercial if the budget is on the lower end. However, the more experience your dog builds, the more gigs it will get.

Reliability

Because the dog commercial industry is competitive and many dogs only get one commercial in their lifetime, the consistency for income from a commercial is low. Dogs are only paid a flat fee for their work on a commercial. You should not expect to see residuals for each time the commercial airs. While it can be exciting to see your own dog on television and it may be tempting to keep it working, it is important not to rely on your dog's income.

About the Author

Kimberly Turtenwald began writing professionally in 2000. She has written content for various websites, including Lights 2 You, Online Consultation, Corpus Personal Injury and more. Turtenwald studied editing and publishing at Wisconsin Lutheran College.