Sebastian Rubino / [email protected]
Ridgefield is now home to a new dog boarding business, which opened on May 9.
Camp Bow Wow is owned by Dan and Jamie Campbell. It’s part of a dog boarding brand that has locations across the country.
Thanks to the couple’s interest in dogs, the Campbells jumped at the opportunity to open up shop.
“My wife and I have both raised dogs all our lives, and she’s worked in the long term health care industry, and I had various jobs in the military and that kind of thing,” Dan said. “You just have to go with your gut and use your instinct. We had no clue as far as how to open up a dog boarding facility successfully, which is why we went with a franchise like Camp Bow Wow, where we talked to the people who do know how to do this stuff and helped guide us.”
Dan said his philosophy in dog care is to provide quality care to dogs, while also making a profit.
“It might sound kind of cold, but if we don’t make money, we don’t get to take care of the dogs, and the dogs come first,” he said.
The business goes through a vetting process to ensure they hire worthwhile employees, so the dogs are not just well-fed or groomed, but also get opportunities for socialization and exercise.
Since Camp Bow Wow opened, Dan said the reception from the community has been “unbelievable.” Over 600 people have already requested their services.
“I think we’re meeting a need in the community is what it comes down to,” he said.
As the business establishes itself, Dan said they plan to add more services like home visits and other offerings suggested by the community.
“We have a lot of happy people that are just happy to have some place to take their dog where it’s not ‘dog storage,’ but it’s actually doggy care,” he said. “When they come to our place, they just can’t wait to come to our play yards and get socialized.”
To be accepted into the facility, Dan said each dog needs to be up to date on vaccinations and must be healthy. They also put the animals through a socialization process to make sure they mingle with the other dogs comfortably.
The Campbells said Camp Bow Wow has proved to be a great match for what they hope to accomplish.
“For example, some of the other franchises talked about crating dogs and we don’t do that,” he said. “We invested over $100,000 in what we call ‘cabins’ that have solid walls so you don’t have fence fighting and the pups are not put in crates. Camp Bow Wow just matched our philosophy in how you care for a dog.”
Besides the cabins, there are cameras located throughout the facility, which allows dog owners to check on their pets from their phones at any time. There’s also a luxury suite for dogs to stay in when their owners are on extended vacations, which comes with a TV for the dog.
The staff are also monitored by the cameras to ensure the safety of the dogs.
“It’s not Big Brother so much as it is making sure that the dogs are safe, protecting the dogs as well as ourselves,” Dan said.
To keep the dogs active, each indoor play area leads to an outdoor area with artificial turf the staff regularly cleans with hospital-grade disinfectant. The outdoor areas include a high fence and a roof to protect the dogs from the elements. Disinfectant is also used to clean the cabins each morning when the dogs are out playing.
Camp Bow Wow is located at 5810 S. 11th St., Ridgefield. The business can be reached by phone at 360-883-5730.