How Much Can You Earn As A Pet Influencer?

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Written by
Cara Carlone
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Learning how to effectively manage a pet account on TikTok can change your career and your life. We analyzed the top trending pet accounts on the app to reveal the workings of the industry and provide the best tips and strategies for you to share your pet with the world.

Watching Cats on the Internet

Cute and funny videos of pets have been a keystone of the internet since it began, with classic pet celebrities like “Keyboard Cat” becoming meme mascots for the internet and 2000s culture. People love sharing and watching pet videos so much so that “watching videos of cats” is almost synonymous with “browsing social media”, and where there are fans, there are creators – and money to be made.

Charli Damelio is the top-earning human celebrity on TikTok, reportedly earning $ 5 million from TikTok in 2020, but how do the animal celebrities hold up? We found 100 of the top trending pet influencer TikTok accounts in the U.S. and analyzed their activity to find out who is the hottest pet celeb, how much they make on TikTok, and how they do it.

A Natural Star

The top-earning pet celebrity on our hot list is “ThatLittlePuff”, a ragdoll cat from New York City. He specializes in dressing up as various characters and getting stuck in with trending human activities. His first and most famous character is Chef Puff.

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Puff has over 33 million followers on TikTok, and his videos have collectively received nearly a billion hearts. His owners release around 20 videos per month, normally one of which is a paid partnership – i.e. an advertising deal for which the owner is paid. We estimate that, based on his engagement ratio (the percentage of his followers who interact with his videos) and his follower count, Puff’s owner receives around $67,000 for each of these paid partnerships – that’s more than the US national average annual salary in just one video!


A Celebrity’s Salary

We estimate Puff’s owner’s total income from TikTok paid promotion videos to be around $800,000 per year. However, alongside this, TikTok creators in the U.S., U.K., Germany, France, Italy, and Spain also receive payment from the TikTok Creator Fund, at approximately $0.03 per 1,000 views.

Puff’s an American born and bred, and his recent videos received over 32 million views on average, so with the 20 post-per-month rate we mentioned earlier, we estimate that his owner could be receiving another $230,000 from the TikTok Creator Fund this year.

That puts Puff’s annual TikTok salary at over 1 million U.S. dollars!

But that’s still not all! ThatLittlePuff also has millions of followers on YouTube, Instagram, and X, and could be earning substantial amounts through viewership, advertising, and sponsorship deals on those apps too. On top of all that, you can buy ThatLittlePuff merchandise on his website. We suspect he is earning a total gross profit before tax somewhere over $2 million this year. That’s right, this cat is earning a multi-million salary.

The Competition

Although ThatLittlePuff is our top earner, it’s a similar story for the other American TikTok pet accounts we analyzed. The average salary for the top 100 TikTok pets in the U.S. was around $120,000 per year. Around half of this is through paid partnerships, at approximately $4,750 per partnership post. The remaining $60,000 comes from the Creator Fund. Again, this is only their income through TikTok, and most will have additional income through other platforms.

We estimate that 85% of the top trending American TikTok pets earn more than the U.S. national average salary through TikTok alone. The few who don’t typically have new accounts or have recently experienced a decline in video performance, affecting their average number of plays.

How to become a full-time social manager for your pet

Whether your pet is canine or feline, reptile or rodent, there are celebrity pets of all shapes and sizes and yours could be the next big social media star. However, it will take some work to build your pet’s online persona to reach an income you can quit your job for. By our calculations, to reach the average U.S. income of $65,000 through your pet’s TikTok account you will need to:

  • Reach 800,000 followers
  • Publish 19 unsponsored videos per month
  • Publish 1 sponsored video per month
  • Get an average of 5 million views per video

A substantial, but not insurmountable task, when you consider it would be your full-time job!

And it may be more likely than you think to break into pet stardom – 25% of the top 100 trending pets were accounts with fewer than 240 posts – likely accounts which have been running for less than a year.

Protect Your Pets – And Your Salary

The next thing you might want to consider after putting your livelihood into the paws of your pets is insuring them. Pet insurance is crucial for all pet owners, but this is especially true when your salary depends on their well-being. You can get tailored insurance solutions at Insuranceopedia that cater to the needs of pets, no matter how many followers they have, so you don’t need to deal with any extra stress over your pets’ health.

As Max Coupland, CEO of Insuranceopedia, puts it, “In the whirlwind of social media success, it’s crucial not to forget the wellbeing of our animal companions. They are your pet above all else and need to be cared for accordingly. A good pet insurance policy ensures that your pet’s health emergencies are covered without eating into your earnings.”

Celebrity Status

Achieved all that? Congratulations, your pet is officially a star! Now you can work full-time as your pet’s social manager. Quit your old job, and start spreading their influence over other apps and platforms. Start a website, create merchandise, and build a pet influencer brand to rival ThatLittlePuff. Don’t let species hold you back, your pet could be the next Charli Damelio – just hope the fame doesn’t go to their head!

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