Your flight is booked, bags are packed and your private paradise, oceanfront villa bordering a remote island awaits you. In the midst of eagerness for your next vacation, your blissful thoughts are interrupted by a deep pang of guilt and anxiety. Why? Because like most pet owners, you cringe at the thought of leaving your four-legged family member at a dog kennel or pet hotel.
Husband and wife entrepreneurs, Karine and Aaron Hirschhorn were all too familiar with this scenario. “Every time we traveled, the dogs hated the kennel and came back with kennel cough,” said Karine. “And (we) paid up to $120 a day for the privilege.”
Since traveling with the family pooches, Rocky and Rambo, was out of the question, the couple brainstormed a more pet-friendly solution. The Hirschhorn’s wanted to provide a better experience for their family pets – a real home for their dogs to stay while they were away. The result: a nationwide online service that gives your dog a “vacay” in the comforts of someone else’s home.
The idea quickly caught on and their business soon became a reality. By offering insurance-backed peace of mind, photo updates, and emergency support the two California-based entrepreneurs look to carve out a new niche in the pet boarding industry.
Learn how husband-and-wife team, Karine and Aaron venture to make dog boarding more awesome and why you shouldn’t allow your fear to stand in the way.
|Founders:||Karine Hirschhorn, 33; Aaron Hirschhorn, 33|
|Location:||Santa Monica, CA|
|Industry:||Pet Grooming & Boarding Industry|
How We Got Started:
My husband and I hated leaving our dogs at a kennel when we traveled, and after a great stay in a trainer’s home, we decided to open our home to guest dogs. The service was a hit, and we soon got funding to expand nationally and connect dog lovers who want to find or provide superior pet care services.
Our company, Dog Vacay allows you to find a real home to board your dog. It’s better than a kennel where “Spot” will be stuck in a cage all day. With home boarding your dog receives individual attention, fun with a small number of well-socialized dogs, and supervision from a responsible pet owner. All at a price that doesn’t add up to more than your vacation.