There’s only one town to be in when it comes to pet grooming and daycare … Dogtown, East Sheen!
Lots of local four legged (and even one three legged) canines and their owners are discovering a new and very inviting grooming and daycare facility in the heart of East Sheen. Just as many dogs have trouble walking past Sheen Pets without straining at the leash, a similar situation is arising at 121 Sheen Lane, the home of Dogtown.
Formerly the Dog House, the premises have undergone a refurbishment and have been under new ownership since last September.
“One of the first things we did when we were considering taking the business on,” says partner Andrew Noble, “was talk to local people to find out what they felt about what was already there and what we could do to improve upon it.”
“One key finding was that it was difficult to see whether the shop was even open and what was happening inside because you couldn’t see in from the street. That’s why we now have a big, clear window – humans can see in, dogs can see out and parents often hold their children up to the window so that they can watch what’s going on. It’s also encouraged dog owners to pop in, say hello and see what we can offer them.”
Andrew (top right) and partner Adam Gibbins (left), a qualified groomer and canine hydrotherapist, bring plenty of experience and a deeply ingrained love of animals with them. Owners of one of London’s few pet hydrotherapy and physiotherapy centres in Chiswick they also have two lovely cockerpoos, Martha and Duffy, who can usually be found at Dogtown.
It is clear that Adam and Andrew believe in a professional approach at all levels, a reflection of their former business careers in other sectors.
“We appreciate that success is within our control and that of our customers. “ says Andrew, “That means that we need to do everything just right, from customer (and canine) service to licences, planning permission and setting prices – not only to ensure that we are competitive but also to ensure that Dogtown will be here for years to come,” says Andrew.
Dogtown offers the full spectrum of grooming – from a drop-in nail trim to hand stripping, de-matting, bath brush and tidy to a traditional full groom. They use premium grooming products and owning two shops means that they can move staff between the two to meet demand.
“Our prices – all on the website – may not be the cheapest but what we do promise you is a quality, unrushed groom, ensuring that your dog is happy, relaxed and comfortable. Our groomers frequently give the dogs a break during grooming so they can rest or have a little play. This may take up to three hours, so when you divide the cost by the time taken we feel it’s good value. ”
“We always spend as much time as is necessary speaking to the owner about the style of groom they would like or what might be necessary depending on the condition of the coat. If someone is unsure we will tend to leave the coat longer – you can always cut it shorter if need be but you can’t miraculously make it grow back if perchance it’s not quite right! Feedback is really important – we would rather know what we could do better straight away and act on it than hear it third hand.”
Daycare is a logical additional service for Dogtown. “We have a lovely outdoor space for the dogs here, room inside for them to move about, play and sleep and, best of all, Richmond Park on the doorstep for a good walk during the day. We accept eight dogs a day; some stay for a few hours and others all day. Importantly, we can guarantee is that your dog won’t come home muddy as we rinse them all off when the weather’s bad.”
In compliance with the Royal Parks’ requirement, Andrew & Adam have acquired their Professional Dog Walking and Vehicle Licences, meaning that they can officially walk four dogs at one time. In order for the fun to start as soon as possible, Dogtown has a smartly branded vehicle to transport the dogs comfortably and safely.
“We are really enjoying being in East Sheen and have had a great response from local pet owners and lots of interest in what we’re doing. Now we’re just looking forward to some rain and mud-free days!” added Andrew.
Dogtown, 121 Sheen Lane, SW14 8AE – www.dogtown.uk.com – T: 0208 876 8149 – E: firstname.lastname@example.org
“My two Goldies, Sasha & Jessie, have been going to Dogtown since September and have been beautifully looked after. All the staff are friendly and communication via email, text, phone and in person is responsive and professional. They clearly love the dogs and are attentive and affectionate with them. They have proved to be flexible and accommodating towards my dog care needs.”
“I am very fussy about who walks and looks after my dogs when I am unable to do so myself, but Dogtown are great and I do not hesitate to recommend them for dog daycare, walking and grooming.”
Words: Jacquie Duncan Images: East Sheen Village & Dogtown