Small Business Spotlight
When my husband and I brought Oly home from Miami-Dade Animal Services the first person we called was Kris, co-owner of Dogtown in Coconut Grove. Let just say, those poor babies do not come out of the shelter smelling like the delicious puppies that they really are. Kris fit us in on short notice after we explained the situation. Their groomer was able to give Oly a very much needed hypoallergenic flea and tick bath, nail trimming and all that other fun stuff that comes along with grooming including some extra love that our new rescue puppy so desperately needed. We became regulars at Dogtown and once we went on our first puppy-less vacation we knew where we were leaving him! We were able to go on this vacation and a few other vacations after that knowing he was having a blast and being well taken care of. Your best friend will not stay locked up in a kennel here. They get their own suite, and get to play with all the other fur guests and go on walks. If you request it they also offer trips to the dog park for an hour once a day which of course we chose because we couldn't live with the idea of us enjoying our vacation without him getting the most out of his staycation.
I chose Dogtown to be the first Small Business Spotlight featured because they truly hold a special place in our home. From the first instance that we reached out to them, to the many other times we've left our fur baby in their care, they've always provided quality care and quality services. Kris and his wife Anai have been in the dog business for over a decade and love dogs, have their own and understand that every owner wants nothing but the best which they are set out to provide for each one of their clients. Read below for a Q&A with Anai for more information on them and their business!
Q & A with Dogtown Co-owner Anai Fonte
What services and/or products does your business offer and what neighborhood do you cater to? We are a dog hotel, daycare and grooming facility. Our clients come from all over Miami.
How long have you been in business and what inspired you to get involved in the dog business? Dogtown has been open for 4 years but we have been working with dogs for over a decade. We were inspired to open Dogtown by our own dogs. We spoil them and couldn’t find a place that we would feel comfortable leaving our dogs. So we created Dogtown with the vision of what our ideal dog hotel would be.
Why did you choose Coconut Grove for your business location? What makes it so special for you guys? We’ve been part of the Coconut Grove community most of our lives. It was incredibly important for us to open our flagship store there. The community has been incredibly supportive and we are so lucky to be here.
What makes your business unique among the other businesses that provide similaar services? Aside from our team (which is the best group of animal lovers you’ll ever meet) our philosophy makes us stand out. Having a free roaming dog hotel and a yard is great but meeting a dogs needs requires so much more, especially when they’re away from home and their family. We wanted caretakers that invest their time and devotion to making these pups feel at home. We wanted outdoor walks, multiple times a day to establish our pack and keep a routine as close to home as possible. We provide personal attention in a way few other places can.
What do you love most about being a small business owner that is all about dogs? We have entrepreneurial souls and to be able to do what we love for what we love (dogs) is just amazing.
What is the secret to your business’s success? We keep the dogs best interest at heart, at all times. Do that and the success follows.
Do you have a favorite breed? I always say yes and start with Pitbulls, then Boxers, then Dobbies, then Boston Terriers, oh and Rotties, Pugs are so cute too! But Mutts are the BEST! You know what? I just love them all. It’s impossible to choose one.
Tell us about your own dogs. What breed and age? Is there something unique or special about them you’d like to share? We have 2 perfect Furr-Daughters. Piper is a 9 year old Boxer/Lab mix we found at the pound when she was just 3 months old. She lost an eye as a puppy and she never let that keep her from anything. She’s incredible. Phoenix is 8 and she is a Pit/Whippet Mix. It’s impossible to not smile around her. She has so much personality and is just the silliest girl. We are the luckiest dog parents in the world.
If you could give dog owners one piece of advice with regard to the specific products and/or services you specialize in, what would it be? There is just so much! What can we help with? We love helping people have the best relationships with their dogs, whether it’s grooming advice, or care advice, training, etc. we freely dispense it! So my advice would be, call us… we’re happy to help with whatever you need help with.