by Nancy E. Hassel, American Pet Professionals. Weekly featured APP Member
Welcome to our weekly featured member of American Pet Professionals! This week, June 15, 2015 we feature Janice Costa, Founder of Canine Camp Getaway!
Check out our fun Q&A interview with Janice about Canine Camp Getaway and her experience in the Pet Industry:
Canine Camp Getaway is the ultimate vacation for dogs and dog lovers, with a host of dog-friendly activities (agility, swimming, hiking, lure coursing, frisbee, flyball, DOGA, K9 nose work), classes (Canine CPR, Barks & Crafts) and seminars by top veterinarians and trainers. It's all about having fun with your dog!How long have you been in the Pet Industry? I started working with dogs in 2002, beginning with obedience and agility training and then getting involved with the Therapy Dog program in 2004...my interest in dog sports and activities led me to create Canine Camp Getaway in 2009. What drew you to the Pet Industry? I've always loved animals, and tend to like pet people more than non pet people! The best thing about your experience so far? I meet amazing people and dogs all the time! And I get to plan great vacations with my dogs - it doesn't get better than that! Are you a solo petrepreneur or do you have employees? I have an amazing staff at our two camps--vets, trainers and dog sport instructors, but as far as the actual day to day work of the business that happens the other 50 weeks of the year...that's all me (with some volunteer help from a dear friend/staffer) If you could change/add/create ONE thing in the pet industry what would that be? I wish people were more open minded--there are so many different theories on feeding, training and vaccinating, and different things work for different dogs, yet sometimes it seems everyone is more invested in being "right" rather than accepting diversity What is the most interesting thing about your business or rescue group? Dogs in swimming pools, dogs at the bar for Yappy Hours, dogs being a part of the vacation instead of being left behind. Do you set goals for you business? Weekly/Monthly/Quarterly/Yearly? Monthly most of the time...as camp approaches, that moves to weekly. Do you remember the last time you had a weekend off? Weekend off -- what's that??? Do you regularly take vacations? Well, I work in a vacation business, so I guess camp would be considered my "working vacation." Your biggest complaint about the industry? People thinking there's only one "right" way to do things. Every dog (or dog breed) is different, every dog owner is different, and we need to be cognizant of that, as it's not a one size fits all industry. How many pets did you treat last week? Or pet clients did you cater too? We're in full camp mode, so I've probably spoken to 30+ clients in the past week. What is your advice to a young person joining the pet industry? Figure out what service isn't out there, or how you can differentiate what you offer...and personalize it, because pet people are interested in connections with service providers who care about their pets as much as they do! Your favorite thing about your customers (i.e. pet parents). They are all around awesome! They love dogs, support each other, know how to have fun, and have built this amazing community that I love being a part of. What is the best thing you have done for your business to help you grow? We are very charity focused--we do a Silent Auction to support animal charities, a Casino Night to benefit an animal sanctuary, I donate a week of camp that guests bid on with the money going to canine cancer research...people like that we give back! When did you realize that this industry was more fun/rewarding/compassionate (add your own!) than a previous industry you may have worked in? As I became more involved in therapy dog testing, I realized how much I liked the people, and how much I enjoyed working around dogs and dog people. If you weren't in the pet industry - what other profession would you love to do? Singing on Broadway! What is your favorite cocktail of choice? Strawberry daiquiri -- I'm a girly girl drinker! Favorite book/movie/TV show? Richard Bach's "The Bridge Across Forever"/When Harry Met Sally/Nashville Most amazing place you have been to on planet earth? Lucerne, Switzerland Favorite meal? My mom's baked clams and cornflake fried chicken! When you were a kid, and someone asked, what did you want to be when you grow up? What was your answer? Depends on the year...ballerina, writer, rock star, president. Favorite color? Sky blue Your favorite or most inspirational quote? "There are no shortcuts to any place worth going." --Beverly Sills What is your: Dog/horse/cat/bird/lizard/bunny Breed of choice? Partial to Labs, Malinois and GSDs, and all combinations of these! Hobbies you love that don't involve pets, if any! 🙂 Writing, reading, crafts (though most of my crafts are now pet related!), musical theatre How many pets do you currently own? Four (two dogs, two cats) Janice is located in NY and can be reached at: Janice@caninecampgetaway.com - and check Canine Camp Getaway to see when the next getaway is and how you can be inspired and motivated to run your own business!]]>