pooch hotel

Chicago Trip and Daycare Visits

The past 2 days, Trycia and I were in Chicago visiting her family that was in from Poland.  Tuesday afternoon we had about 2 hours to kill and decided to check out some doggy daycares in the area.   I can honestly say that I was not impressed.

The first one that we visited is one of the "premier" dog daycares in Chicago.  We walked in and the lobby was super clean, granite counter tops, and flat panel tv's..  Wow, the lobby looked good!  Then they took us on the tour of the building where we saw one employee sitting and reading a book (to herself, not the dogs) while one dog was eating puke on the floor.  The worst part was that she did not even get up to clean it (we were in there for about 5 minutes).  In their big dog room, it was the same deal.  The guy was sitting watching the dogs and there was a pile of poop on the floor.  Wow!!

Then we walked down the street and visited another place.  There it felt much more like the PPP when we walked in.... Until we talked to the staff.  I asked the guy behind the counter what types of shots they require and he did not even know.  They also told us they don't limit the number of dogs, and you can show up anytime.  The guy behind the desk did say that the owner was out, and he was just covering, but still...Wow!

On the way to the airport we talked lots about what we saw and how we can improve our own daycare!  I am really happy with how we run our business.  We don't have granite counter tops, designer lighting in the lobby or big college degrees behind an executive desk in our office, but we have lots and lots of love for the dogs, our customers and our employees!!  It is important to remember that our daycare is built for our 4 legged customers and we do everything with them in mind (I would rather save the money on granite counter tops and designer lighting and buy better play equipment, dog toys r make things easier for our staff).  This is why we have been working hard on remodeling our grooming area (which will be completed this week).

Maybe we were overly critical, and never told the employees that we owned a doggy daycare in Minneapolis, but I was not impressed by what we saw at these "premier" and "posh" places.  Both of the daycares we visited had more than 1 location and I honestly feel that when you start getting big like that, the quality and care declines... My point was proven 2 times today.

As always, if there is anything we can do to improve please let me know.  We want to be the best dog daycare in Minneapolis.

Keith

What is in our water?

Ina at doggie daycare in st louis park,mn I swear there has to be something in the water at the doggie daycare?  5 of our employees have gotten engaged in the past 3 months!  Seriously how crazy is that?  Now most of the talk has shifted to wedding planning around the building.  One of employees even found the feature that The Knot did on our wedding.

What else is going on?  I am glad that the holidays are over at the PPP and that things are back to normal.

Hope you have a good day.

Keith

Cooper

Cooper Cooper the Bearded Collie has been spending the night with us for the past week boarding in our hotel.  Cooper is such an easy going dog and all he wants is attention!  Each time I walk in the room he has to run over and be petted.  He is such a sweet guy!  Yesterday, Anna had some fun doing coopers hair and he is sporting the "combover look".  Yesterday when his parents picked him up, cooper was so excited to see them!  We are going to miss seeing this guy every morning.

Hope everyone has a good weekend!

Keith

It's not all about the money

Cheena - Maltese daycare dog It is great to be back from our trip to Seattle!  We were gone for 4 days, and it seemed like a lifetime of being away from the doggy daycare.  We visited Seattle with Sarah Beth and she has a friend that lives out there who is also an amazing pet photographer.  We went out with her photographer friend and asked what daycares we should check out.  She named a few and we went to look at them.  I had always known that some doggy daycares are in it for "money and to get rich", rather for the "fun and love of the animals" like we are.  We visited a place that looked like $1 million and I have to give it to them, they had a great lobby, great branding, and an amazing looking building, but once we took a tour it was very obvious that all the money goes into the front of the building and not to the dogs or staff.  I really believe that a good amount of money needs to be put into equipment and fun things for the dogs and the staff.  We also visited another doggy daycare that reminded me of Pampered Pooch Playground.  From the look and feel to they run the daycare, I felt like I was walking into Pampered Pooch Playground, the Seattle version.  The owner was super cool and we have a great time talking with him for a few hours and sharing ideas.

Today,I went to our daycare and got to hang out with the dogs for a few hours.  I guess I can't stay away. Meet Cheena, who is 13 and blind.  She is spending the night in our pooch hotel for the next few nights.  Cheena might be blind, but that does not stop her!  She knows some pretty cool tricks and will do just about anything for a treat!

Have a great night!

Keith