The Puppy Lounge: Lessons from a small, successful business

Last weekend, Cassie and I took Charlie, our little Shih Tzu puppy, to a rather remarkable place. After a horrible experience at a local dog park (a massive German Shepard attempted to eat him) the previous week, we were left wondering where we could take him for some fun and to allow him time to socialize with other dogs. We have a cat at home as well and the two of them get along quite well, but we thought it was time to let him play with his own kind for a while.

puppy lounge logoCassie went online and did a search and discovered an awesome place called the Puppy Lounge, a day care, boarding and spa specifically for dogs under 30 pounds. Yeah, I will probably get some crap about this from my friends and coworkers, but I have to tell this story.

We love our little dog and I think you could count us among those fanatical pet owners that would do just about anything for their pets. So when Cassie found this place, we had to give it a shot. Here’s a list of the things they do to make this an extraordinary experience:

  • They do a background check on all of the dogs. Yes, you heard me right. They require all of your documentation and they even make a phone call to your vet to make sure they are safe to bring into the place.
  • They have a little shop where you can buy small-dog specific accessories. It’s pricey, but I would guarantee that they sell the stuff.
  • They have a web cam so us pet nuts can watch our dogs when we leave them there. It might sound corny, but we enjoy seeing our dogs have some fun. It’s not that different from watching your own children get along and play with other children.
  • Their customer service is extraordinary. When we showed up, they immediately took care of their new customer – not us, but Charlie. They said hi, petted him, and made him feel welcome. Then they took him into the day care area. We were secondary and we were perfectly okay with that because we knew Charlie was being taken care of. When we showed back up to pick him up, they had him at the front door ready to go with a resounding, “He did so well today. We can’t wait to see him again!”
  • They let you try their service for free. The first time you take your dog there is free. It is a chance to see how well he behaves with other dogs and it gives you, the pet owner, a chance to try the service. It is a win-win situation for everyone.

We loved the Puppy Lounge. So did Charlie. And we will be returning there very soon.


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