Category: Franchising

K9 Resorts building

Q&A With K9 Resorts Franchise Owner: Andy Lubalin

Who better to learn about owning a K9 Resorts franchise from, and talk shop with, than the very first K9 Resorts franchise owner? That’s why we sat down with Andy Lubalin of the K9 Resorts location in Fairfield, NJ. As the first franchisee in the K9 Resorts family, Andy started his journey in 2011. The doors of the Fairfield location officially opened in April 2013 and the rest is history. We wanted to see what made Andy want to get into the business and what advice he might have for prospective franchise owners thinking about joining the family.

Q: How did you decide to become a franchise owner?

A: I was in the corporate world for more than 20 years and was traveling all week. I had small children and wanted to be at home more. I made a move but then the commute was just taking up too much time and the actual job I was doing wasn’t making me happy. I knew I wanted to own my own business and work with animals. I actually wasn’t looking for a franchise, but just the pet industry. However, I knew Steven and Jason Parker because they used to walk my dog and the rest is history.

Q: What made you choose K9?

A: As I mentioned, I wasn’t specifically looking for a franchise but for someway to get into the industry. So, I contacted Steven and Jason and they had me come by a location. I was absolutely blown away by the K9 Resorts operation and so I started talking to them about possibly owning a franchise.

Q: Where does your love of dogs come from?

A: I’ve always loved dogs, but I didn’t really think about getting into the industry until I had an invisible fence installed on my property. From that day, I knew I wanted to have the opportunity to work with animals in some form.

Q: What’s the best thing about owning a franchise?

A: One of the best things about owning a franchise is the support that you get. When I was hiring and training staff, corporate helped me in any way I needed to change culture and get the right group of people in place at my location. This means I was able to have more qualified people on my team and stop working so many hours myself. They also trained my staff at no charge and if I was short staffed, they were very helpful in providing staff.

Even now I know that I could call them with any need, and they’d be right there for me.

Q: What makes coming into work great for you?

A: The best part of the job are the relationships I’ve built with customers… and of course the dogs! I love interacting with the dogs, but pet care is an intimate business because these pets are just as important as children and are part of the family. So, always making sure the customers are happy and can count on us is key. We always make sure that customers feel welcome and like they’re a part of our family. When you build relationships with your customers, if there’s ever an issue, you have that relationship to back you up.

Q: What is your #1 piece of advice for a brand new K9 franchise owner?

A: Planning! If I could do it over, I’d start smaller. There are expenses that you’ll incur that you may not plan for, so save as much as you can before you open your own K9 Resorts franchise. I would also have started with a lighter staff to begin with and bulked up as demand required. My best advice is to really think about your level of experience in the industry and the motivation for coming into the business. You should be prepared to be very dedicated to the business in the first few years. Also, finding the right staff can make or break your business. Lastly, you need to be able to work with people. Pet parents are wonderful and appreciating interacting with them is key to success!

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Dog tired working on computer

How to Get Ready for the Dog Daycare Busy Season

Don’t Get Overwhelmed By Summer Guests!

Summer is one of the busiest times for any dog daycare. With pet parents taking advantage of warmer weather and time off, furry family members get to take their own vacations through luxury dog boarding locations like K9 Resorts. One of the keys in learning how to run a franchise is predicting when to prepare and what steps you need to take to get ready for an onslaught of new business! Getting your dog daycare ready for all the eager pups this summer might be simpler than you think, but being sure to get a head start on preparations is key. Here are some ways you can ready yourself for all the soon-to-be-boarders at your facility.

Staff Appropriately

More dogs mean that you need to increase your staff! Often, dog daycares go through busier seasons with the same level of staffing that they use all year-round. While this might work for some operations, having the appropriate amount of staff to monitor and nurture the dogs in your care is crucial to an excellent dog boarding experience. Reputable dog daycare locations require a certain number of staff per number of dogs during any given time so that they can make sure the guests are happy and healthy. When the busy season hits, it might be time to increase the number of qualified employees you have on staff in order to satisfy the demand! Learning how to run a franchise means that you must accommodate as needed to ensure that the level of quality expected from the franchise is always meet and/or exceeded.

Stock Appropriately

Don’t get caught during the busy season without much-needed supplies. When you have more guests, you have to make sure you have the accessories they could need while in your care. Stock up on treats and food as well as anything needed to give medication. Add blankets and the like to your stockpile just in case. Everything you need to run your operation should be increased as the number of bookings you receive increases. Another thing to check is the expiration of any food you have in reserve. Typically, dog food lasts about a year, so don’t go overboard with stocking up on it. Determine around how much you might need and pad that amount just a bit, so you aren’t wasting any food.

Market Yourself

There may be lots of other dog daycare options in the area, but you know that your location is the best. Make sure everyone else knows it, too! When you’re figuring out how to run a franchise, one of the best benefits of being part of a known brand is the backing that comes with the name. That means marketing your location among a sea of pet daycare providers will be easier! Even if it’s a busy season, you don’t want to miss out on a portion of that increased business. Be sure to figure out your marketing plan early and begin to get your name out there ahead of the competition. Don’t forget to let everyone know why you’re the best and how Fido will get a true vacation while his parents are away!

K9 Resorts is a cut above the rest. Our luxury dog daycare and boarding facilities are focused on a stress-free, clean, and comfortable experience for four-legged family members. Many pet parents feel guilt when they need to leave their beloved pets in the care of others when they’re going out of town, but at K9 Resorts, those fun-loving animals are sure to have a fantastic time.

To learn more about our franchising opportunities, contact us today!

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