Hound House Fall Update
Hello dear friends and customers,
We wanted to check in because we have a closure announcement and also because it has been a while since we last posted to the blog, and we want to make sure everyone is clear on our new protocols as we try to transition out of the Corona era.
We have tried to communicate all changes to our services either here on the blog or in our facebook group, as well as through e-mail communication with those customers who aren't in the group, and face-to-face communication with our regulars, but we also understand that people lead busy lives and don't always have time to check the website for updates or jump on facebook. We thought it would be a good idea to post all of the changes that have happened since the start of closures through the re-opening. Those changes are as follows:
Daycare and Boarding:
Daycare and Boarding are now our primary services. For customers who were already subscribed to a daycare or boarding package, not much has changed. The M-F daycare subscribers will still come on their assigned days. Daycare subscribers and VIP package subscribers still have priority booking for boarding services.
We are now asking customers to remain near/in their car during the handoff in the driveway, and either wear a mask or maintain a 6-10' distance. If your dog is obedient off-leash, you can release them to us, if they are not, you can remain in the vehicle and we will retrieve your dog for you. This is actually our normal practice during the winter months and when snow or ice is present to limit risk of fall or injury on the property. We now are practicing this year round.
Neither Tori nor myself typically wear masks outdoors for routine daycare handoffs,, but we will wear one upon request. We will always wear masks if we are receiving/handing off a pet that has supplies for a longer stay, such as a boarding stay, or if we will be in close proximity to the customer during the handoff for more than a few seconds.
Due to the effect the Corona Virus has had on our previous business model, it was necessary to restructure our services with an emphasis on Daycare and Boarding. We have retained a small handful of dog walking and in-home vacation customers, but have significantly reduced our service area for these services, as well as our availability. It stands to reason that with increased participation in our boarding and daycare services, we are now unable to be off property as often as we previously could.
The bulk of our walking/in-home customers have transitioned to daycare services, and for that we thank you. Some, outside of our revised service area have been forced to find alternative arrangements, and for this we apologize. For the small handful of customers who are still within our revised service area, but could not conveniently switch to a daycare package, we are still providing walks and in-home vacation services, but we ask for flexibility, as our primary responsibility must be to the dogs on our property.
We have always maintained a 1-hour guaranteed window for walking services. This means that if you book a walk for 12 noon, that walk will be COMPLETE sometime between 11:30 am and 12:30 pm. Now more than ever we need customers to understand this policy.
Additionally, we will NOT enter a home if there are customers present. Please, please, please, do not schedule these services if you do not require them.
We are not servicing clients who work from home. If you are home, you can walk/let your dog out and feed him or her. Please understand, we do not really want to be in customer homes right now as it is, and we certainly don't want to be in one when people are present. We are continuing to provide these services on a very limited basis for people who truly need them, and we will likely phase them out altogether in the future, especially if the pandemic forces another shutdown in business. If you need to cancel a service because your plans have changed due to the pandemic, or because your work schedule or child's school schedule is affected by it, we understand completely. We have an obligation as a small business to refund or credit during times like these. Feel free to cancel with little to no notice, we won't be offended. But please do not be present in the home when we arrive or during our scheduled service time. We are urging all of our remaining dog walking customers to consider a daycare package. We understand that there is a price difference between these services, so we are offering daycare (normally $25) for the price of a walk ($22) for customers who are transitioning from daily walks to daycare. There will be no increase in cost to those customers. If customers have trouble meeting the drop-off or pick-up windows for daycare due to work schedule or other reasons, we can offer a transport. We offer buy one get one free transports to all VIP customers and daycare subscribers who sign up for a minimum of 2-days per week. Additionally, our daycare subscribers enjoy priority booking for boarding services, which is especially useful if you have a dog that cannot be boarded at large chain kennels when you travel or vacation. I cannot stress this enough, if you want to be able to board your dog with us for the holidays and peak dates, it would behoove you to sign up for a daycare subscription. We are phasing out in-home and vacation services and there will be limited space for boarding and daycare. Don't miss the boat.
Payment and Credits:
We want to take this opportunity to thank all of our existing customers for continuing to utilize our services and for supporting our business through the pandemic. Many of you have been so kind, and have treated Tori and I like friends and family through this ordeal. From your willingness to switch from walks to daycare, to refusing to use the credits you had on file when everything shut down (some were far too generous), to understanding any logistical complications we have encountered due to the shutdown, we can't thank you enough for your loyalty, patience and generosity. You have helped us stay afloat through this difficult time.
All of that said, we have made some minor changes that will help everybody should business get shutdown again. We are now asking any existing walking customers to pay for those services on a weekly basis instead of at the beginning of each month. We are doing this because we do not want to have to issue large refunds or maintain large credits on file should another wave of Covid shutdowns happen. Payments are still accepted in cash or check only. All checks should be made payable to: Redleg Pet Services.
Dates and Availability Last but not least, we have a short weekend vacation between 9/18 through 9/21 and will not be available for boarding services that weekend. Daycare will be closed on 9/18 or 9/21 Thanks and stay safe friends!! Mike & Tori