Monday, October 25, 2004 at 12:02:16 PM by Edward Knittel
Dog boarding, grooming, and training have always been the standard services offered in the pet care industry. But people and the media are catching on to new services like transportation (taxi service) and what I believe to be the next big wave - doggie daycare. If you haven't heard about daycare for your dog you soon will.
So what is it? Doggie daycare owners believe that if you're not going to leave your kids home alone all day, then why do that to your dog? Therefore, it works a lot like daycare that has been often associated with children. Drop the kids off so they can run around and play; have a few snacks and a nap; then in the evening you pick them up for a nice relaxing night by the fire. Instead of your companion sitting at home all day waiting for you to get home to play with him, now he's running around with his buddies having a fun and energetic time.
Doggie daycare is being offered more and more at traditional boarding kennels but we're also seeing a trend with business owners opening up facilities that are specifically designed and tailored for daycare needs.
Take Playful Paws owner Kelly Carroll, a one time Chicago area pet sitter, for instance. Back in June she opened up her 4,200 square foot indoor/outdoor, cage free facility in Federal Way, WA and has already seen her business grow.
Carroll says that 80 percent of her clients are empty nesters or don't have children.
"Their dogs are their children," she said. "They're people who work long hours and know their dogs need attention and activity."
People who are bringing their dogs to daycare have already seen the benefits it offers. One of Carroll's client's says:
"[Ripley] plays all day, comes home, eats dinner, goes to the bathroom and goes to sleep. In my opinion, a tired dog is a happy dog. I think doggy day care is the answer to life. We want to spoil our dog. We have a dog to make our lives better and we want to make her life better."
And for a small business owner, owning a doggie daycare can have a lot of benefits for you as well. Consider each of these:
Most dogs will come at least 2 or 3 times a week which means you can count on a steady, consistant clientel.
Most doggie daycares operate 12 hours a day during the week. They're typically only open from 7:00am - 7:00pm Monday through Friday.
You're playing with dogs all day - do you really need a better reason?
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