The Benefits of Integrating Credit Card Processing With Your Software

credit card transactions

Integrating Your Software With Your Credit Card Transactions

Your pet business consists of a series of many daily processes, but if you can’t fit all these pieces together, you may be missing out on the bigger picture. Aligning your business administration, customer management, and credit card transactions seems like the smart choice (and it is!), but too many pet businesses still use third party payment processors or insist on taking cash only.

Cash may be king, but cash-only businesses are a thing of the past. In fact, in a recent study by Consumer Credit, only 14% of respondents said they use cash for everyday purchases while 80% of respondents said they use their debit cards. Cash only pet businesses run the risk of losing customers because they are not offering modern payment systems. 

Customers at your facility expect their checkout experience to be simple and fast – this is where integrated credit card processing comes in. Read on to learn how integrating payment systems with your pet software can help strengthen your business as a whole, not just at checkout.

Improve Customer Experience

Integrated credit card transactions can create a seamless checkout experience for your clients. No more switching between systems as your client waits, allow them to leave their wallets at home, as you charge their card on file, prompt them through the checkout process to leave a tip, and email receipts.

Integrated payments act as a detailed customer database for your pet business and with modern systems, customers can access a portal to update their profiles, including their credit card information so their payments are always up to date.

Effortlessly track clients previous purchases to improve engagement, create targeted promotions and upsell and cross-sell. Did your client previously buy a dog shampoo that is now on sale? If your client management system is integrated with your payment processor, you can easily collect this kind of information, and let them know in real-time!

credit card transactions

Streamline Business Operations

Integrating payments with your pet software will free up time spent on manual processes and help ease day to day tasks. 

No more spending hours reconciling bank statements to determine if you’ve been paid correctly for all your work, and forget the tedious manual data entry – integrated payments will ensure accurate, real-time transaction data and reduce costly human error.

Switching to an integrated credit card processor will also reduce your pet business’ risk from cash theft and vulnerability from hackers. The right processor will have security protocols that protect credit card data, and by encouraging credit card transactions you will have less cash at your business location.

The less time you spend tracking payments and worrying about security, the more focus you can put into other critical areas of your pet business!

Increase in Revenue

How can integrated credit card processing increase your pet business’ revenue? Many clients ask this question. Since integrated credit card processing can update payment data automatically, there is no longer any need for an employee to manage any of this. 

In addition, integration simplifies the payment process, making it easier to train employees on how to process payments, allowing your pet business to save money and time on training.

Keeping card numbers on file allows you to not only simplify checkout, but you can also charge a no-show fee or take deposits for appointments made online. No-shows can be especially costly to pet businesses and clients are a lot more likely to show up (or cancel in a timely manner) if they know they will be charged a fee.

You can also sell lucrative memberships or packages – this ensures passive recurring revenue and encourages your clients to book packages and services in advance. The easier it is for your clients – the more likely they are to book (and to recommend you to friends!)

credit card transactions

Take Advantage Of Integrated Credit Card Transactions

Integrated credit card processing offers opportunities for pet businesses to save time, eliminate double data entry, increase cash flow, strengthen security, reduce expenses, and ensure effective workflow management. 

Consider using integrated credit card processing with 123Pet Software and start taking advantage of these many benefits to grow your pet business!

How To Find & What To Expect When Working At A Dog DayCare

Dog Daycare Job

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in the pet industry are expected to grow 11% by the year 2024. If working with pets, especially dogs sounds like a great way to spend your time and get paid for it, then a dog daycare job may be the right career for you.

Read on to learn how to find a dog daycare job and what to expect working at one.

How to Find a Dog Daycare Job

To find this dream job, start looking in your area for different doggy daycares. Maybe you have one that you always take your pooch to. Or if you have friends who take their dog to a daycare, ask them which ones they like or don’t like. 

If you can’t find any, a simple Google search for some in your area can help you find some. 

Once you find them, go on their website and see if they have any job openings. You could even contact them to see if they’re hiring but just haven’t gotten around to posting the job online. 

If they don’t have a job application page, a place to contact them, or even a website, then go into their daycare and ask if they are hiring. 

Sometimes this is the better option because then they get to know you and recognize your face. Plus, going into the actual location shows that you are committed and ready to work for the job. 

dog daycare job

What to Expect at a Dog DayCare Job

If you found the perfect daycare for you to work at and got hired, congrats! Or maybe you want to find out what it’s like to have a dog daycare job before you even apply. 

Well, this section has all of the answers for you. 

Clean Up After Dogs

A lot of your time will be spent cleaning up after the dogs. This is true at most shelters as well. 

Someone’s got to do it, and most of the time, that ends up being you.

This seems like a gross, but easy enough task. Until you realize that there are so many dogs, and they all like to try and smell and roll in each other’s poop while you’re trying to pick it up. 

Also check your shoes before you go home or get in your car because chances are there will be some lingering. 

Closing and Opening the Gates Can Be Difficult

When you have to let the dogs out into the yard to let them play, sometimes opening the gate can be difficult. 

You can feel like you’re a sales associate working on Black Friday trying to make sure that all of them don’t escape at once. 

Your Arm Can Be Sore From Throwing the Tennis Ball

At the end of the day, your arm may be sore from throwing around the tennis ball for so many dogs over and over. 

But it’s so worth it to be able to see the dogs so happy chasing after that little yellow ball. 

dog daycare job

You’ll be Covered in Fur at the End of the Day

Hopefully, you’re not allergic to dogs, because their hair will be all over you, your hair, clothes, and probably your house. Even if you don’t own a dog, your house may look like you own one. 

While you’re working at your new job, you may want to choose outfits that hide how much dog hair is really sticking to you.

You’ll Smell Like Dogs No Matter How Much You Shower

Some people love the smell of dogs, but some people can’t stand it. 

If you love dogs, you should know that this is what you’re going to smell like for a while. It can be difficult to get the smell of dogs out of your hair, no matter how many times you shower. 

The scent can also get into your clothes. If you come home to your dog, your pet may be wondering where you’ve been all day and why you smell like other dogs. 

There Are Good and Bad Dogs

This job is great, but you are going to encounter good, loving dogs and dogs that want to make you pull your hair out.

Some dogs will be incredibly stubborn and difficult on purpose, and you will have to have a lot of patience when dealing with them.  However, it’s the dogs that are sweet, loving, and always want cuddles and kisses that will make it all worth it. 

You’ll Want to Take Some of Them Home

One of the hardest parts of this job will be leaving them at the end of the day.  For the ones that you really love, it can be hard not to want to adopt them all and take them home with you.

But that could also be a good thing. If you don’t have pets at home, you get your fun and fulfillment out of being around them all day without having to take on the responsibility of caring for them all of the time.

Plus, you know that you always get to come back tomorrow and see them again. 

Find Your Dream Dog Daycare Job Today

Finding a dog daycare job can be a great thing, but if you can’t find one, you could possibly even create your own dog daycare business. It can be a lot of work to start your own business, but with the right tools and help, it could make the process a lot easier.

Check out our software to help you start and manage your new pet-loving business.

Lost Dog! How to Avoid the Unthinkable (And What to Do If it Happens)

how to find lost dogs

July is lost pet prevention month. Lost pet prevention month was created in 2014 to give pet parents focused, in-depth resources, tools, and strategies for preventing losing pets, how to find lost dogs (& other pets!) if the unthinking does happen, as well as advice for getting them home quickly if they go ‘AWOL’ (Absent without a leash).

Every year, the Humane Society of the United States estimates that 10 million pets get lost.

It can be overwhelming to figure out what to do when you have a lost dog or cat. There are several different resources to consider when you have a missing pet.

Most importantly, you should try to remain calm, hold on to hope, and try to use as many different tools as you can.

Many owners are able to be united with their pets as long as they follow a few crucial steps, as missing even one of them could mean losing your pet.

Today we talk about how to find lost dogs. Read on to learn why it is important to have a process while searching for your lost dog, as well as how you can prevent it from happening in the future.

How To Find Lost Dogs

The first reaction people generally have to a lost dog is to panic. This is a completely understandable and normal emotion to feel, but in order to search most effectively, you need to come at it with a level head.

Take a few minutes to regroup and formulate a plan based on this list. The sooner you are able to search, the better your chances are at finding your pet.

As well, delegate tasks if you are able to other family members so that you all can get the most done as quickly as possible.

1. Contact Local Organizations

The very first step you should take is to call local animal shelters and animal control agencies.

The likelihood of your pet being there will depend on many different factors, such as how long ago they went missing, and the region you live in.

As a general rule, file a missing pet report for any shelters or organizations within a 60-mile radius of your home.

To find these shelters, search online or check phonebook. In the event that there are no local shelters, contact the police department to file a report.

Provide a description of your pet to them, as well as a clear picture for them to display in the event that they see your dog.

how to find lost dogs

2. Search the Neighborhood

Once you have contacted as many agencies in the area as possible, begin to search your neighborhood.

It can also be helpful if one person is able to begin contacting shelters, while the other is checking the immediate area.

Searching the neighborhood a few times a day is a crucial step to finding your pet, even if it has been a while.

Moreover, try to let the local postal workers and delivery drivers know you are looking for your dog. As well, provide them with a flyer or picture directly.

3. Post Advertisements

Creating a flyer with the name, age, sex, breed, and description of your pet can go a long way in finding them.

Once you have your flyer, post it anywhere you can think of. Vet offices, community centers, grocery stores, traffic intersections, and pet supply stores are a great start.

Other locations will depend on what is in your area, but no matter where you are able to put it this can help create awareness.

Moreover, consider contacting the local newspaper to place a missing pet advertisement, as many will allow you to do this at no cost.

lost dog

4. Utilize Online Resources for Lost Dogs

There is an abundance of online resources and newer technology for you to use as you look for your missing pet.

The Center for Lost Pets, Craigslist, Fido Finder, Lost Dogs of America, Lost Pet USA, and Missing Pet Partnership are great places to start.

5. Stay Wary of Scams

Unfortunately, there are plenty of people willing to take advantage of those looking for their dog.

This often takes the form of monetary requests or requests for wire transfers from people claiming to have your dog.

Always ask for them to send a picture of your dog if they claim to have it. Moreover, try to leave out one unique aspect of your dog or its coat.

Then, have the person give you a thorough description of your animal if they claim to have it. If they only can describe what you have posted online or in the flyer, it is likely a scam.

6. Never Give Up Hope

Regardless of how many of these steps you are able to take, remember not to give up hope in finding them.

There are many success stories in finding lost pets, even after long periods of time.

how to find lost dogs

Prevent a Reoccurance

In the event you find your pet, remember there are also ways to prevent losing them again.

In Honor of National Lost Pet Prevention Day, try to take steps to keep your dog with you.

Have them wear a collar and tag as much as possible, get them microchipped, spay and neuter them, and keep them safe and secure outdoors and indoors.

Final Thoughts on How To Find Lost Dogs

Overall, it is possible to find your lost dog as long as you handle the situation calmly and effectively.

In a panicked state, it can be easy to overlook steps and make other mistakes. Therefore, try to be methodical, and divide tasks between you and your family.

Remember to contact your local organizations, post flyers, advertise online, and search your neighborhood as much as possible.

As well, be wary of any scammers claiming to have found your pet. But, do not lose hope at any point in the journey. Anything is possible, and it is important that you do as much as you possibly can to find them.

For more information on keeping your pet safe, check out our post on seven ways to keep them cool this summer.

Additional Paw-some Pet Grooming Services for Business Expansion

pet grooming services

While millennials are buying fewer houses and having kids later, they’re happy to spend thousands a year on their pets.

If you’re running a pet grooming business, you can capitalize on this by offering more than just haircuts and washes. You can expand pet grooming services to lots of other treatments that make pets feel special and good-looking.

Here are four services to add to your pet grooming to ensure you build up lots of dedicated clients.

1. Add Some Retail Flair

When your clients drop off or pick up their furry friends, they’re going to spend precious minutes in your office and around your staff. While they’re waiting, they’re going to need to have something to do. You could supply them with chairs and magazines or you could make a little money while you have them.

Retail is a very profitable way for you to make some extra dollars while you have your clients’ attention.

Just a handful of collars, leashes, and dog washes can move pretty fast if your clients trust you. You’re going to want to do your research, however. Don’t just add any old products because your clients are going to ask you plenty of questions about what you have on your shelves.

Selling retail is challenging and won’t sell itself so have a pitch for the products that you use. Your pitch ensures that your customers feel good about what they buy.

Your retail products can give you a foothold in the retail market and after some time, you’ll be able to expand to offer high-quality products that you would use.

It might take time to build the retail arm of your business but if you’re building good relationships with clients through grooming, that’s half the battle.

pet grooming services

2. Spa Day for Doggies

While you might offer standard grooming and washing treatments, more dog owners are trying to make their dogs feel extra special.

While they’re away for an afternoon at a spa treatment, they might be feeling guilty about leaving their dog at home.

If you offer spa treatments, you can offer your pets the chance to feel as good as you feel. Add some dental treatments so that they leave the spa day with fresh breath. Massage therapy treatments can also make older dogs feel young again.

While it can come at a premium price, many pet owners are more willing to treat their pets than to treat themselves. They might leave their dog at your spa while they’re slaving away at work. However, when they pick up their dog, looking relaxed and happy, it will give them the joy they might get from their own spa day.

More pet supply companies now offer the supplies that you need to give pets the kind of spa treatment customers wants.

When it’s easy to get the supplies that you need to offer a spa day to pets, you can expand your offerings easily. Just make sure you have adequate space to accommodate all the pups looking for that special treatment.

pet grooming services

3. Specialize in Breeds

Even though most small business owners might think that it’s vital to be able to offer everything to everyone, specializing has its own benefits. When you specialize in a certain sized dog, a certain breed, or a certain style of grooming, you can make your offerings seem more premium.

You’ll be able to capture a market that might be willing to pay more to someone who understands their beloved pet.

Choosing to specialize doesn’t limit you. In fact, it earns you trust from your clients. They’ll be happy to work with you, knowing that you know what it takes to make a dog like theirs happy.

When you choose a specific breed, make sure your retail matches the specialization. You can find all kinds of small companies that are focused on creating products that work well for small breeds, large breeds, and boutique breeds.

If you’re the one pet groomer in town who is willing to specialize in Pomeranians, you might find that you’ve tapped into a market of true believers. They’ll come to you with all of their Pomeranian needs and style questions. Just make sure you’re prepared.

pet grooming services

4. Portrait Services

One of the best ways to immortalize your customers’ favorite furry friends is through fancy portraits. If you dabble in photography and are good at handling dogs, you could offer the best photos of dogs in town.

You’ll have access to them right after they’ve been transformed from greasy and matted to gorgeous and fluffy. You can get the best photos of those beautiful little creatures when you’ve had them nice and relaxed after their day of spa treatments or grooming.

Offer a discount to your portraits when people have gotten a service from you. Some people might just want to drop by for the photo on its own.

All you need is a staging corner, some good looking backdrops, and some props to make the photo look complete. Have setups ready for large dogs and small dogs to ensure you don’t discriminate.

With a professional lighting setup and a great camera, you can get some extra special images of your furry clients. Add these to your social media profiles and you’ll be sure to get lots of followers.

Invest in a photo printer and you could end up expanding your services by a lot.

pet grooming services

Pet Grooming Services Should Always Grow

Whether you’re adding mobile services to meet pets out at the farmers market or making house calls, you should always be looking to grow and expand. The more different ways you can offer pet grooming services to your clients, the more they’ll stay faithful to you.

In order to stay a successful pet groomer, check out our guide for tips.

Promote Your Dog Groomers In Preparation For Bring Your Dog To Work Day

dog going to work

‘Take Your Dog To Work day’ is just a few weeks away (on June 21st to be precise), and no one wants to bring a scruffy looking, smelly dog to work. This is the ideal time to come up with fresh new ideas to promote your dog groomers.

Of course, as a pet professional you have a few other things on your plate. For example hiring more staff to handle all the clients coming in, buying more supplies, organizing your dog groomers for the take your dog to work day as well as overseeing the day-to-day operations.

This is one of the busiest times of the year for groomers. However, as a grooming business owner, you must understand the critical role that marketing plays in the ongoing health of your business. And with the take your dog to work day approaching it is the right time to take your marketing strategy a step further to keep a steady stream of new clients coming in, and existing clients coming back for more.

With this in mind, here are some of the essential marketing tips for your dog groomers in preparation for take your dog to work day.

Social media

Schedule a couple of social media updates ahead of time to post in the coming weeks or days as we approach the take your dog to work day.

Post some inspiring content about dogs, for example, how to be kind to animals or more exciting ask your fans to share photos of their dogs in their best outfits.

This could stir a whole series of images with tips on how your clients should dress their dogs.

Be sure to include some of your products or services, but do not make it all about your pet business since you want your followers to click the like, share and re-tweet buttons so be sure to include some fun and non-promotional tips.

take your dog to work day

Give a little something extra

To the days leading to take your dog to work day, give away some goodies, such as dog biscuits, leashes, stickers, magnets, calendars, and pet food can covers, printed with your business logo and theme color also include your business name, physical address, phone number and email address.

This will advertise your dog groomers and will go a long way to let your clients know you appreciate their business.

Prepare the ‘take your dog to work day’ offers

This is a great time to have promotional offers. You can provide an early bird discount for your clients.

This is where clients have to book a grooming appointment. The earlier the booking, the more the discount while last minute booking has no cuts or even quite pricey.

As a groomer, this will make your job easier, as you get to plan. You could also set up some attractive displays of your bestselling dog treats, and mix in some pet toys, or consider a Buy one Get one Free Offer, or offer free baths and bulk discounts on your dog groomers.

take your dog to work day

Write a blog post

With the upcoming pet holiday, it’s time to write an intriguing blog post. Go for topics such as ‘Do and Dont’s of Take Your Dog to Work Day’ or ‘Take Your Dog to Work Day Tips’ or even better ‘how to prepare your dog for grooming’.

Blog posts are excellent for SEO marketing, they boost your brand as well as increase your business visibility on the internet, and it also shows that your grooming business cares about your client, which in return will building, trust and like factor.

Publications

Newspapers and pet magazines are always on the lookout for fresh content.

Approach any of these publications and write exciting content about dogs, incorporate the take your dog to work day, involve the community plus your grooming business which is in the same local area.

Consider marketing your shop in smaller local newspapers. Community newspapers are cheaper and can reach more targeted audiences as compared to larger publications. Chances are they will run your story; this will give a big boost to your grooming business.

Send out newsletters

Newsletters are a great way to stay in touch with existing customers. Newsletters should contain important dog news, tips answering client questions and fun dog related stories.

You could also give reasons why you need to groom dogs for the upcoming take your dog to work day. A regular and well-written newsletter will allow clients know you at a personal level and as a friend.

A newsletter will also help you get referrals from your clients when friends ask for pet grooming recommendations.

marketing

Send a handwritten note wishing your clients happy ‘take your dog to work day’

Send some adorable dog-themed thank you cards to appreciate your best clients for their business. The card can also include business contact information.

Write them a handwritten thank you card, wish them a happy ‘take your dog to work’ day and tell them how much you love looking after their pet.

Remember to mention the pet’s name and even include the pet’s favorite cookie in the envelope. Also, remind them of their next appointment.

 

Let your clients know your dog groomers opening hours

One overlooked part of marketing is to keep customers in the loop of your opening hours. This is especially important ahead of a pet holiday like take your dog to work day.

There is nothing worse than clients desperately searching your website for information about your opening hours or having clients turn up at your door when you are closed. So, ensure your clients know your opening hours.

You can put a sign on the door with your Opening Hours in the week leading up to the take your dog to work day. Post an update on your social media networks. Update the Opening Hours on your outgoing voicemail message and your Website.

Email your clients in the week leading up to the dog holiday to let them know of your opening hours. Make sure this gets done well ahead of time as clients may have to make alternative plans if you are closed.

Check out our blog for more interesting content!

How To Boost Business During the Summer Slowdown: Part 2

summer dog

While summer may mean vacations and cookouts for most people, for business owners it can mean slower days at the groomers. In response to this dreaded shift, we published part one of our tips series last month, which offers tactics to boost sales during the infamous summer slowdown.

Since it can never hurt to have more fresh ideas to try out in case business starts to slow down as the temperature heats up, we came up with five more tips for keeping revenue rolling in during summer—and beyond.

  1. Don’t jump to cutting prices

It’s tempting to cut prices during the summer months to try to boost traffic, but that ultimately reduces your profits. Instead of selling items for less than their value, try to increase the perceived value of your grooming services in the eyes of your customers. For example, instead of discounting your dog baths, sell them at full price and then add in a free nail trim. This increases customer loyalty by making your customers feel like you’re going out of your way to give them the VIP treatment.

If your grooming business uses 123Pet Software, be sure to use the email marketing feature to send out these deals to your entire client base automatically!

  1. Sell more memberships

The one exception to cutting prices is when it comes to selling memberships, as they are a great way to encourage repeat customers. A membership deal gives your clients a good price on bulk services, and helps your groomers strengthen their relationships with clients. Whether you’re offering four haircuts for the price of three or weekly dog baths for a set monthly price, you can ensure that your favorite clients will visit your grooming business more often, keeping your groomers busy.

With 123Pet Software, you can make it easy to set up monthly payments for customers that want to join your membership program. The system even keeps track of which memberships are still active, simplifying the process for you and your clients.

summer slowdown

  1. Learn the art of upselling

Increase your sales this summer season by upselling to your customers. Encourage your groomers to try out new products on their furry clients and explain the benefits of each to their owners. Dog owners may not know that some dogs need special sunscreen or fur detangling spray. But they do know that you’re the expert, so let your customers know what they can do to keep their dogs clean and healthy in between visits to the groomers.

Another way to upsell is to offer product bundles. Products like shampoo and conditioner or dog nail polish and nail clippers go hand in hand, so display these together at your grooming business to encourage customers to buy both. Taking the extra step of adding some festive Fourth of July packaging to physically bundle the products together as a set will attract even more attention.

You could also try selling less popular products in a set with your top sellers. This will make sure that merchandise is constantly flowing—and your customers might even discover a new favorite product. With 123Pet Software’s inventory management capabilities, you’ll be able to quickly discover how well each of your products are selling to identify which ones can be bundled and which ones are your customers’ favorites.

  1. Hold a social media contest

Rev up excitement for your grooming business during the summer with a social media contest! Social contests can help improve customer engagement and loyalty, and boost your business’ visibility.

Take advantage of seasonal marketing opportunities and holidays to promote your contest. Brainstorm a couple of different ways to create excitement for your services on social media by tying it into some summer fun. For example, you can offer a discount to the customer who shares the best photo of their pet in festive Fourth of July gear or to the customer who tags you in photos of their freshly cleaned pup lounging at a cookout.

When your customers are tagging your grooming business in the photos they share, it will help you reach a wider audience and ideally encourage their followers to make an appointment. Set up online booking with 123Pet Software so as soon those new followers find out about your business, they can quickly and easily book an appointment.

summer slowdown

  1. Partner with a new business

In addition to marketing and sales tactics, you could also try to partner with another local small business to boost sales and traffic for both parties during the summer months. The partnership might entail you offering customers who spend $25 at your business another $25 in credit with your partner, and vice versa. For example, you can partner with the café next door to offer a free lunch with the purchase of a dog wash. While your furry client is having his bath, his owner can grab some food while they wait. Not only do these offers incentivize buyers to visit both shops, but it may also introduce each business to an audience it might not otherwise come into contact with.

Summertime can be a really trying season for business owners struggling to get people away from the beach and into the groomers. But with these marketing and sales tips, grooming business owners will be able to attract customers—new and old—and enjoy the summer months as much as their clientele.

The Pawfect Dog Dad Gifts for Father’s Day

dog dad gifts

 

Anyone can be a pet owner, but it takes someone special to be a dog dad (or mom)! And because Father’s Day is just around the corner – June 16 to be exact, you might be wondering what you can give the dog dads in your life. Lucky for you, we’ve done the hard bit by researching the best dog dad gifts for dog owners. Check out these pawfect dog dad gifts for Father’s Day.

Dog Dad Shirt

Some people think giving shirts as a gift is terrible. But it really depends on the print, as well as the person getting the gift.

Personally, we think dog dad shirts  like these  are wonderful. They’re practical and you can give a bunch of them to every dog parent in your circle. Or, if you know custom t-shirt printing shops, you can have one printed with your own design.

If you’re feeling generous, you can give 7 shirts, one for each day of the week.

Father's Day, dog dad gifts

Matching Dog and Owner Apparel

Does he have a lot of dog dad shirts already?

If yes, you can venture outside shirts and give him a hoodie or pajamas. Take it up a notch by buying his furbaby a matching set.

Personalized Sticky Notes or Notepad

Here’s a fun fact for you. Did you know that the average office dude or gal gets  11 messages via Post-it  daily?

So if your guy spends most of his time at the office (when not spending time with his dog baby, of course), why not give him something he can use often and remind him of his best pal at the same time?

Just think how happy he’ll be when he sees a picture of his furbaby every time he has to write a note.

Father's Day, dog dad gifts

Free Apps

Yes, you read that right. We’re saying you should get a dog dad some free apps for Father’s Day. After all, aren’t the best things in life free?

Okay, that sounds a bit corny, but hear us out.  such as Finding Rover or DogVacay are actually quite useful for dog owners.  Finding Rover , for example, helps families find their lost dogs through a virtual database of canine facial recognition, while  DogVacay  helps dog owners who want to go on vacation find cage-free pet boarding in their region.

Now, if the dog dad you’re giving these gifts to isn’t all that tech-savvy, you can take this opportunity to introduce him to the wonderful world of apps. Yes, you may have given him a free gift but he’ll surely appreciate your thought and effort.

Father's Day

HEPA Filters

Do you know of dog dads who have pet allergies?

While some people would just tell these dog owners to get rid of their furbabies, we know for a fact that there’s a way to  live with pet allergies  without getting rid of your pet.

One of those ways is with HEPA filtration. Aside from removing microscopic allergens, HEPA filters also get rid of indoor air pollutants, which allow homes to retain good indoor air quality.

High-Tech Pet Gadgets

If you’re looking for unique gifts for dog owners that double as the perfect Father’s Day presents, you can go for high-tech pet gadgets.

From wireless, waterproof devices that act as GPS beacons for doggies to home monitors that allow owners to check up on their furbabies while they’re at work, there are so many gizmos out there that are sure to please techie dog dads.

Father's Day, dog dad gifts

 

Dog Books

What’s the best way to please a dog lover and a bibliophile?

Give them a dog book or two (or more if you want). Now, if you’re not sure which ones are good enough to give as a gift, you can start with  Oprah’s recommendations, which include titles such as Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love and You Had Me at Woof: How Dogs Taught Me the Secrets of Happiness.

Father's Day

Doggie Cufflinks

For a stylish dog dad, you can’t go wrong with doggie cufflinks. They come in all sorts of styles and shapes now, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding the perfect design.

There are silver ones, gold ones, and even cufflinks made from wood. Just choose something you know he’ll love to wear for formal and semi formal occasions.

Father's Day, dog dad gifts

Dog Dad and Baby Holiday

Feeling generous? If the dog dad you have in mind is in dire need of a vacation but can’t go because he doesn’t want to leave his precious pup, give him and his baby a vacation.

The great thing about doing it this year is there are so many  dog-friendly destinations  nowadays, you won’t find it a hassle to plan in advance or just in time for Father’s Day.

Dog DNA Test Kit

Is he obsessed with his furry companion’s genetic makeup?

We can assure you, it’s not because he’s being over the top as a dog dad. If he has a mixed breed dog, it’s even more important for him to know its background because there are  specific health issues he may need to watch out for.

For example, Dobermans are at risk for bleeding disorders while certain big dogs are prone to arthritis. Knowing these risk factors can help owners make better choices about their dogs’ diet and other health requirements.

dog dad gifts

Weird Dog Dad Gifts

For dog dads who like ridiculous stuff, there are some truly bizarre accessories for their furbabies you can gift them with.

From dog tattoos to pet high chairs, pet saunas, and butt covers, you just have to do a bit of research to come up with a weird dog gift an equally weird dog dad will love.

Dog Dad Gifts: Are You Set for Father’s Day?

Now that you have some ideas as to what to give the dog dad/s in your life, don’t wait until the last minute to get the perfect gift.

And if you’re still looking for gifts for dog owners, don’t forget to check out our blog for more ideas.

Know of dog dads who also have their own pet grooming service? You can give them the perfect Father’s Day gift with the right pet software. Check out 123Pet Software for more information.

It’s That Time Again: How to Keep Fido Free of Dog Ticks and Fleas This Summer

how to remove dog ticks,what do dog ticks look like

Summertime is finally here, and dog owners are excited about long walks and vacations with their pets. Summer can be fun, but it’s also a season where dog owners should be on alert for dog ticks and fleas.

Summer excursions come with their own unique risks. Heat stroke, pavement hot enough to burn paws, and dehydration are common summer problems dog owners have to worry about. All pet owners should be concerned about dog ticks and fleas.

Fleas and ticks are more than annoying. A bite from a tick could lead to a serious infection or disease, and fleas can easily start pestering your family and other pets if they get inside.

We’re here to help you protect your dog from ticks and fleas. Read on to learn how to prevent dog ticks and fleas, how to remove dog ticks and what do dog ticks look like.

Tips For Preventing Dog Ticks And Fleas

It’s important to note there are a lot of preventative medications that can provide tick control for dogs and treat fleas.

Preventing ticks and fleas from biting your dog is surprisingly easy. In fact, you may have certain things in your home already that can help protect your dog.

Want to know simple ways to prevent the spread of dog ticks and fleas? Follow these tips, and you’ll have an easy tick and flea free summer.

Do Inspections

Your dog may be covered in fur, but it’s still possible to spot the signs of flea and tick infestation.

Check your dog all over for ticks. Pay special attention to the chin, belly, and legs. These body parts are often very close to the ground and are hot spots for ticks.

If you’re concerned about fleas, use a flea comb to go through their fur. The comb won’t just get adult fleas, it can also help remove eggs and nits.

Look everywhere on your dog, don’t just look at where there’s fur. Pests can easily take up space in foot pads and ears. Make sure you read on to learn what do dog ticks look like, so you know what to look for on your pet.

how to remove dog ticks,what do dog ticks look like

Keep A Clean House

Fleas and ticks on dogs may not stay on dogs, they could easily find their way to other places in your home. It can only take one pest to cause an infestation, so be sure to take time to thoroughly clean your home in the summer.

Make a special cleaning schedule for your pet. Wash any sheets, towels, or blankets your dog may sleep on in hot water.

Vacuum your house frequently, and use attachments to get into corners and other hard to reach areas.

If you’re noticing fleas and ticks love hiding in your dog’s bedding, consider using new sheets or buying a different bed. If your dog sleeps outdoors, cedar chips can be used for bedding and can help keep pests away.

Don’t focus your maintenance areas on the inside of your home. Keep the grass in your backyard neatly trimmed, and treat grass and other plants with flea and tick repellent.

how to remove dog ticks,what do dog ticks look like

Consider The Company You Keep

Fleas and ticks aren’t just annoying, they’re also very easy to spread. Your dog could easily pick them up during a rowdy visit to the dog park, or by going to a house or yard with fleas and ticks.

Check their fur after they go to the dog park. Practice good dog park etiquette and don’t bring your dog to play if they have fleas or ticks. If you see dogs with visible signs of flea and tick problems like hot spots and bites, keep them away.

If they go to a doggy daycare, be sure to ask the staff how they protect dogs against fleas and ticks. See if they have policies in place for dogs with known flea and tick problems.

It’s also important to remember that other species get fleas and ticks. Your dog could easily get fleas or ticks from an outdoor cat or a different mammal.

how to remove dog ticks,what do dog ticks look like

Avoid Infested Areas

You may be tempted to let your dog run free when you’re on a hike or camping, but you should make sure your dog doesn’t stray too far away.

Your manicured backyard can house fleas and ticks, imagine how many of them could be hiding in the woods.

Fleas and ticks love areas with a lot of long grass, trees, and swampy areas. When you’re outside, try to steer your dog away from those areas. Keep your dog in open areas, and avoid going too far off the designated hiking and camping paths.

how to remove dog ticks,what do dog ticks look like

Groom Frequently

Most owners reserve bath time for when their dog gets into a muddy patch. If you want to prevent flea and tick problems, you should develop a regular cleaning schedule for your dog.

Regular baths don’t just keep your dog’s fur clean. If you use special flea and tick shampoo, you can take care of troublesome dog ticks and fleas fast.

Use other special flea and tick products when you bathe your dog. Get special combs and brushes that are designed to handle dog fur and can get rid of fleas, ticks, and their eggs.

You can also use your dog’s bath time to inspect their body and fur. Look for signs of flea and tick infestation like excessive scratching or bite marks.

how to remove dog ticks,what do dog ticks look like

Treat Everywhere

Have you noticed a flea or tick on your dog? The work doesn’t stop after you’ve given them a flea bath or have given them medicine.

Fleas and ticks are hardy and are born travelers. Don’t just focus on giving your home a good cleaning, clean everywhere you can.

Spray down your car, even if your dog hasn’t been in it recently. Fleas and ticks could have hitched a ride on your clothing and could be in the seats or on the floor.

If you noticed fleas in your house, steam clean whatever surfaces you can. Wash clothes in hot water, and wash all bedding.

How To Remove Dog Ticks

Now you have all the prevention tips but sometimes no matter how careful you are, your dog may still be exposed to ticks.

So how do you remove dog ticks? Using a pair of tweezers is the easiest technique, but not just any tweezers will work – you will need to use fine-point tweezers so it is best to buy these in advance.

Spread your dog’s fur, then grasp the tick as close to the skin as possible. Very gently, pull straight upward, in a slow, steady motion. This will prevent the tick’s mouth from breaking off and remaining embedded in the skin.

People often believe it’s the head of the tick that embeds in the skin. But ticks don’t have heads, in the conventional sense, so what gets inserted into your dog is known as “mouth parts.”

how to remove dog ticks,what do dog ticks look like

What Do Dog Ticks Looks Like

So now you have the knowledge to prevent dog ticks and remove them, but what do dog ticks look like? Are you aware of the different kinds of dog ticks and what they look like, so you can spot them on your dog before they get infected?

Ticks vary in size depending on their life stage and how recently they’ve fed. They can start off as small as a pinhead and their size increases once they fill with blood.

In general, ticks are small, round and grey/brown in color. They can occasionally get mistaken for skin lumps, but on closer inspection, you should be able to see the tick’s legs (speak to your vet if you’re unsure). When fully engorged after feeding, the common dog tick is grey colored and around 1cm in diameter.

Despite often being discussed alongside fleas and other insects, ticks are actually arachnids, just like spiders, and they even have the eight legs to prove it.

Although at least 15 species of ticks occur in North America, only a few of these ticks are likely to be encountered by people: American dog tick, lone star tick, black-legged (deer) tick, brown dog tick, and winter tick.

There are also two groups of ticks; often referred to as hard ticks and soft ticks. The hard ticks have a hard shield and are common dog ticks, soft ticks prefer to feed on birds or bats.

Next Steps

Now that you know how to prevent dog ticks and fleas, how to remove dog ticks and what do dog ticks look like – you will want to take your grooming to the next level.

Check out our post on the best brush for your breed. Whether you’re a groomer or a big pet lover, there’s something for everything in the post!

Also, remember that we’re here to help whenever we can. Be sure to contact us so we can answer your most pressing questions.

How To Boost Business During the Summer Slowdown: Part 1

summer dog

Summertime is nearing, and while that means beach trips, ice cream and cookouts for most people, it can mean slower days for pet grooming business owners. This infamous summer slowdown comes as a result of more than half of your customers going away on vacation or simply trying to maximize the time they’re spending outside, according to a survey by Bankrate.

So, while you may end up with fewer customers coming through your door as the temperature rises, don’t let this summer slump keep you up at night! Instead, follow these four strategies, which will not only help combat the slow traffic but could also make a huge difference in how much revenue your grooming business brings in this summer.

  1. Offer seasonal promotions

Your customers’ needs to change in the summer. Think of the kinds of activities they have planned for the summer and create promotions for your services that support those activities. For instance, offer discounts on preventative flea and tick baths or haircuts that will keep pets cool during the hot summer months. While those are practical summer grooming services, don’t be afraid to have a little fun with your promotions, too. In the weeks leading up to the 4th of July, buy some festive decorations that make coming into the grooming salon as fun as a family cookout.

  1. Try something new

Summer gives people an adventurous spirit. If there’s a unique service that you’ve been nervous to roll out, this might be the season to give it a try. For example, if you’ve been considering building out a retail section at your grooming business, offer some festive Independence Day outfits. Try them out on some of your most loyal clients for a photo-op for Instagram that will draw in new customers. With your customers having a lot going on in the coming months, coming into the grooming salon might not be top of mind. But rolling out marketing for brand-new offerings might pique their interest and bring them in.

  1. Check in with your customers

Between vacation plans and last-minute trips to the beach, there’s a higher chance that your customers might forget their appointments. It’s important that you check in with them a bit earlier than you normally would to ensure they’re thinking about their appointments while planning out the rest of their summer. If you have an online booking software, like 123Pet, you can do this with ease by adjusting when you want to send out automated text reminders. An early appointment reminder could mean avoiding costly no-shows on sunny summer days.

If it has been a while since some of your regular customers have made an appointment, you can also use software like 123Pet to send an automated email encouraging them to come in. Our software tracks which of your customers haven’t been in recently, and can automatically send them a promotional coupon to try and get people in the door. For example, messages like, “We haven’t seen you in a while! Here’s 20% off your next visit,” work wonders in keeping your grooming business top of mind for customers.

marketing

 

  1. Analyze your business performance

In addition to being the official start of summer, June also marks the midway point of the year. Take some time to analyze your reports and do a mid-year review of your products and services. What you find may surprise and inspire you to change things up at your grooming business. Identify what your best and worst sellers are and make adjustments accordingly with your marketing tactics and staffing schedules. Giving your customers more of what they want can result in increased sales and set you up for success for the second half of the year.

By trying out some new marketing campaigns or adding new services, you can make your grooming business an enjoyable place for your customers, so they won’t mind missing out on a couple of hours in the sun. And with more customers coming through the door, you can enjoy your summer without worrying about any lasting effects of the summer slowdown.

Stay tuned for part two of our summer slowdown blog series for more business-boosting tips!

Unique Dog Names – Creative Names For Your New Pup!

unique dog names

Unique Dog Names

The situation in the dog park is getting untenable. We can’t all be out there yelling the same thing. If nothing else, it leads to some very confused dogs. There are lists upon lists of the most popular dog names out there but what about choosing unique dog names?

You don’t always want to walk the beaten path. If your dog is a little more unique, you might want to do them justice with a unique name. Don’t worry. Here’s our list of top unique dog names!

Unique Dog Names:

Peeves

“This is my pet, Peeves”. Simple, effective, but always good for a laugh. It’s also cute; the kind of name you could give to a little yapper or, with a sense of irony, to a big lug.

And if anyone questions you too closely, you can always claim you named them for the poltergeist from Harry Potter.

Gelert

While we’re on the subject of things vaguely linked with Harry Potter, let’s dip into mythology for the name “Gelert”. Gelert is a legendary dog associated with Beddgelert in Wales. It’s a sad but beautiful story of a loyal hound that protected its master at the expense of its own life.

Bring Gelert back to life with this name, and you’ll have an interesting story to tell people, too.

As for the Harry Potter link, the sinister Grindelwald’s first name is the similar “Gellert”. Now let’s hope he turns out to be an Animagus.

Garm

Let’s stick with the legends and folklore theme for a moment. Garm is a Norse wolf straight out of legend, a guardian of the underworld. Like Gelert, it’s one of the lesser known wolf legends, which makes it a little unique.

We love this one. It’s more functional as a name than the more famous Fenrir, but it has some old-school cool factor behind it. It also sounds like a noise your dog might make.

Furdinand

Naming your dog is a chance to indulge in some silly fun. Unlike an unlucky child, your dog will never learn that it has a ridiculous name by human standards. But you’ll still get the joy of using it in public.

That’s what makes “Furdinand” a good candidate. This one is just subtle enough to slip under most people’s radar, but you’ll still give your vet a good chuckle.

Cat

We love a dog name that causes a little confusion. Calling your dog “Cat” is a fast pass to that. This one’s worth it just for the looks you’ll get when you yell it in the park.

There’s also a delicious irony in it. Your dog will never know that it shares its name with its most better rival in the pet world. Just don’t ask us what you should do if you get a cat later.

Floof

Trust the internet to make dogs even cuter. Floof is an internet term for fur or something furry, though it has expanded to a more general word for “dog” and even beyond — such as “murder floof” to describe a wolf or bear.

Along with being a pleasant word to say, there’s just something adorable about the word. You won’t stay angry at a dog named “Floof”, that’s for sure.

Woofgang

You can’t hate a good pun. This one’s cute, harmless, and even works pretty well as a name. You can fill a dog with joy just by existing, so why not turn the tables and give your dog a name that’ll always make you laugh?

Besides, it’s also a great excuse to get a cat and name it Meowtzart, as well.

Grandpa/Grandma

Yelling commands at grandma will never get old. And nor will complaining about her loudly when she breaks wind. Your dog will never know, but it’s an endless source of potential laughs for you as an owner.

Of course, this one’s less practical if said senior is around on a regular basis and could cause some offense. Use tactfully.

Luna

Dogs, via their wolfy ancestors, have a pretty close link to the moon. Going back to those roots can give you a name like “Luna”. We think this is a beautiful nod to a dog’s primal past. And it’s one of the prettiest female dog names, to boot.

Kiba

Dipping into foreign languages can be a great way of ensuring you won’t cross wires with any local dog owners.

Kiba is one of our favorites. A Japanese word, it means “fang” — pretty appropriate for a dog. As a name, it sounds unisex while also being short and easy to remember (and spell).

Jeff

There’s something hilarious about dogs with people names instead of pet names. Your ball of dorkiness suddenly becomes someone who attends a meeting or remembers your birthday. And you can generate a lot of confusion by telling people you’re spending the day with Jeff.

Doug

Why choose between a person’s name and a funny one when you can just do both? Dogs love to dig, and when a dog has dug, he’s Doug.

We like to measure the quality of a dog name but how easy it is to say in a silly voice. By that metric, Doug is a winner.

Dawg

So you don’t want to go as far as naming your dog “Dog”, but you’re willing to acknowledge that there’s something weird about giving animals a name. “Dawg” is a pretty good compromise.

It’s tongue-in-cheek and fun to say. And you get the pleasure of correcting people: “No, no, it’s not ‘Dog’, it’s ‘Daaawwg'”.

Kraken

Let the dogs out? No, not in this house. In this house, we RELEASE THE KRAKEN. It’s an unexpected dog name, but fun as heck to say as you open the front door.

Bonus points if you happen to be fans of Pirates of the Caribbean or the nautical world in general. We recommend this to the seafarers among you.

The Joy of Unique Dog Names

Of course, the real joy of unique dog names lies in choosing the one you’d never encounter anywhere else. We’ve given you some ideas, but see what you can come up with to give your dog something unique to call their own.

Once you’ve adopted and named your dog, you’ll want to keep them safe. Check out this list of toxins to avoid.