21 Aug 2014
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‘Pack Tracks’ Puts the Love in Dog Ownership

The doggy daycare and service business on West Street is making a name for itself by sticking to its motto: “Only the best for your dog!”

‘Pack Tracks’ Puts the Love in Dog Ownership ‘Pack Tracks’ Puts the Love in Dog Ownership ‘Pack Tracks’ Puts the Love in Dog Ownership ‘Pack Tracks’ Puts the Love in Dog Ownership ‘Pack Tracks’ Puts the Love in Dog Ownership

For many small business owners, money is the measure of success. Not at , a place where helping raise happy, healthy dogs is the primary goal.

The doggy daycare is just six months old, but already the full-service daycare, training, grooming and retail center is building a lengthy list of satisfied customers. The facility provides numerous services on site and prides itself in providing the best products, treating dogs with love and respect and always delivering service with a smile.

“We are passionate about sharing our education and knowledge and out love of dogs,” said Wendy Shaw, one of three women who partnered to open the West Street business. “Our motto is our code; only the best for your dog.”

The facility was already a training center when Shaw and co-owners Kim Gravel and Christina Kirkwood purchased the facility after working together at a nearby Farmington Valley kennel, but the image and products have changed since the trio took over in 2011.

Providing a structured, school-like climate to maximize socialization, the daycare provides options for dogs of all sizes and hourly options to accommodate owners. The pack of clients are given ample time to play with each other, participate in activities, socialize during lunch and even take “naps” with classical music on a daily basis.

The facility has been fully renovated since it was purchased, providing comfortable flooring and a playground for the dogs to enjoy.

“We immediately made almost $15,000 in renovations, which are geared to promote positive energy and to provide a comfortable, safe climate for the dogs,” Gravel said.

Macchiato, a dachshund who attends the daycare daily, is one of many happy customers – and a bit of a player according to his owner AmyLynn Thompson.

Thompson said when she first brought Macchiato to Pack Tracks, he was understandably a bit nervous. Surrounded by a variety of dogs from those his size to a Bully Kutta, one of the world’s largest breeds, it only took moments for the owners to make him comfortable, she said.

“They gave him a personality test and helped pair him with dogs he would get along with,” Thomson said. “Now he has a lot of girlfriends – he’s bit of a stud.”

But it’s not just about the daycare. The business also doubles as a full-service grooming, training and retail center.

With products that use only organic materials and the safest ingredients for your pet, Shaw and Gravel said the facility provides only first-class options for dog owners. Every Monday, Gravel said area residents are able to book appointments for everything from simple baths to full grooming options with the facility’s 20-year groomer.

When it comes to training, Shaw leads a program that uses dog psychology methods – a system that trains the animals without using negative reinforcement or treats. Shaw said the process allows the dogs to be more stable and consistent when it comes to following commands.

The facility also provides a wide variety of organic, healthy dog food designed to maximize a dog’s energy and fur coat. There’s even a selection of homemade dog treats, each made with love by Kirkwood, who serves as a nutritionist at the facility.

“The treats are made only with the finest ingredients available. Everything is organic and everything is made from scratch. If it’s not something I can grow at home, then I will travel to the health food to pick up the items individually,” Kirkwood said.

With five flavors, there are options from pumpkin to blueberry for dog owners to spoil their pets and feel good about doing it.

Shaw said as Pack Tracks aims to improve services, one of the next steps would be to offer a 24-hour boarding option for dogs. Currently, the business is open from 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

“We want to do it right. We would hire people to provide 24-hour monitoring and care of the dogs and make sure their stay is comfortable,” she said.

For more information on Pack tracks, be sure to visit their website at www.packtracks.net, or stop by their Facebook page by clicking on the link provided.

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