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K-9 Resorts Daycare & Luxury Hotel was founded in 2005 by brothers Steven and Jason Parker in Fanwood, N.J. When in their early teens, their parents denied them a dog of their own, so the entrepreneurial pair opened a professional pet-sitting business to prove they were not only willing, but ready to care for a dog. That business not only became a highly profitable enterprise that they sold for a six-figure sum in 2006, that revenue became the expansion fuel for their burgeoning K-9 Resorts business.
K-9 Resorts Daycare & Luxury Hotel, which is rated #1 in NJ, offers both doggie daycare & luxury cage-free boarding services. K-9Resorts has cage-free accommodations which are spacious and well appointed. K-9 Resorts is the only facility in New Jersey to have been rated Number 1 by multiple major publications. K-9 Resorts started franchising in 2011, and has been offering franchises throughout the Northeast U.S.
MO: Where does your strong entrepreneurial spirit come from?
Steven & Jason: That’s a good question! We don’t know exactly where it comes from, but we can tell you we’ve both had a very strong entrepreneurial spirit from a very young age. We had lemonade stands, leaf blowing business, snow removal business and a dog walking business all before I was 14 and Jason was 12.
MO: Did anyone think you were crazy when you first started to pitch your idea of a luxury dog hotel?
Steven & Jason: Absolutely! Everyone thought we were crazy! Our parents, our friends, and most banks were not ready to listen. But, then we met a bank who believed in us and our idea and loaned us the money, which enabled us to grow our business and live our dream!
MO: Your facility is pretty impressive and had to be built to specification to accommodate your unique requirements. Can you talk about some of the challenges you encountered along the way and how you overcame them?
Steven & Jason: We had to overcome many challenges. The most difficult one was our age. We knew what we were doing, but convincing a bank to loan a half a million dollars to two teenagers was a different story. So, if I had to pick one obstacle, our initial financing would definitely be high on the list.
MO: What are some of the special items or services that you have available for your clients when they board with you?
Steven & Jason: Everything we have or offer at K-9 Resorts is the best of the best. If we had to list a few, we would say our cage-free boarding lets us house dogs in private cage-free rooms with dog beds and color TV’s, we maintain K-9 Resorts sparkling clean at all times, and our staff is wonderful and truly cares for the dogs.
MO: What inspired you to franchise your company and can you talk about the experience of duplicating your business model for others to use?
Steven & Jason: We decided to franchise our business because we wanted to be able to teach others how to live the American dream of becoming their own boss and owning their own business. When choosing franchisees, we are very careful to choose people who we think will represent our brand at the highest standard.
MO: What’s been your strategy for building brand awareness?
Steven & Jason: We can talk all day about how great K-9 Resorts is, but when independent outlets, magazines, newspapers, and TV stations sing our praises, that’s how we know we’re doing a great job. We are honored to be the only Pet Care Facility in NJ that is rated # 1 by multiple major publications. We have also created a referral program, where anyone who refers a family member or friend to sign a franchise agreement with K-9 Resorts Daycare and Luxury Hotel, will be paid $5,000.