Wag N’ Wash Founders Jef Strauss and Dan Remus have done more than just create a successful pet franchise with Wag N’ Wash. They have created a haven for pet ownership and inclusivity within communities across the US. A recent article from Franchise Times highlighted our Founders’ backgrounds and discussed how they have used their business to promote the greater good.
June marked the 50th anniversary of LGBTQ+ Pride celebrations and as they do during Pride every year, Jef and Dan felt the need to reciprocate the love that their pets give to those around them. With the concurrent surge of the Black Lives Matter Movement, the duo felt moved to help, with Wag N’ Wash making an initial donation of $500 to The Trevor Project, an organization supporting the mental health of Black LGBTQ+ youth. Furthermore, they set up recurring monthly payments to the organization to continue to help the cause.
This kind of generosity and inclusivity is more than just an occasional occurrence, however. These values are the pillars of what the Wag N’ Wash brand was founded on. “With Jef and I both being gay men and starting our business, it was important to us to be champions of our community,” remarked Dan. “In the pet industry, our customers are such crazy companion pet people. Our companion pets set the example for us—they’re completely unconditional loving beings, and it doesn’t matter what sexual orientation or gender identity you are, they just love you because you’re hopefully a good person. We’ve tried to live that for our business from the beginning.”
The duo used our pet franchise’s social media platforms to further support the cause. In addition to changing our brand’s pawprint logo to a rainbow colorway in support of pride, our brand crafted a special Black Lives Matter paw print logo. Jef and Dan posted the logo on social media, documenting support for the movement, as well as pictures of some of the protests they attended, alongside their dogs of course!
“Because our business has allowed us to have a platform and a voice heard in avenues it otherwise would not be broadcasted, we feel it’s our obligation and duty that the message is heard through the channels we can broadcast it,” described Dan. “We absolutely believe that silence is complacency—if you’re not talking about Black Lives Matter and injustices happening to other human beings, you’re contributing to it. It’s important we use every platform, including business, to get that message out to affect change.”
These values are embodied in every Wag N’ Wash Franchise Owner and as our pet franchise continues to grow, our voice only grows stronger. Our Franchise Owners are some of the most passionate people out there and they are not afraid to show it! But how could you not be, when you’re working with dogs every day? Owning a pet franchise with Wag N’ Wash poises our Franchise Owners to become leaders within their communities. They are doing more than just owning a successful business. They are making a difference in the lives of pets and their owners every day!
This wouldn’t be possible however without the tremendous support team that has our Franchise Owners’ backs. Here at Wag N’ Wash, we’re more than just business owners. We’re one big family and we view the world as such! Our Franchise Owners help each other out with whatever issues they may be having and our corporate support team is there 24/7 to back them up! This can include helping train new employees, pushing marketing efforts, or helping expand customer reach. Whoever walks into our doors and whatever issues they may be having with their pets, we’re here to help them!
At the same time, we realize that work isn’t everything here at Wag N’ Wash and we like our Franchise Owners – and their pets – to enjoy freedom and flexibility within their schedules. When you own a pet franchise with Wag N’ Wash, you are your own boss, meaning you get to work on your clock and take time off when you need it. Our Franchise Owners get to spend more time with their families than in the average profession and enjoy benefits that most careers simply cannot offer. As one can see, it’s no wonder that Wag N’ Wash Franchise Owners are some of the happiest people that you’ll ever meet!
So what are you waiting for? Join our family today and start making a difference for people and their companion animals within your community! Visit our franchising site for more information.
As retail stores, restaurants, and bars begin to reopen across the country, a sense of normalcy has begun to return. However, many still wonder, “will things ever be the same as before?” It’s hard to give a definitive answer at this point in time, but we can give some insight into how the pet industry as a whole will change and how our recession-resistant pet franchise plans to operate. Additionally, a recent article from PetBusiness.com helped us to further understand the current climate.
Overall, the results of the survey were very insightful into how Wag N’ Wash compares to its competitors. 75% of respondents stated that they remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic, including our recession-resistant pet franchise. 76% are increasing sanitation and cleaning, 72% are providing personal protective equipment to employees and 56% are limiting the number of customers allowed in the store. APPA CEO Steve King responded to the results of the survey by saying, “The new and extensive protection measures being implemented throughout the pandemic aptly demonstrate the ongoing commitment of the responsible pet care community to the safety and well-being of humans and pets.” We’re are proud to have upheld measures such as these during the pandemic here at Wag N’ Wash, like our curbside delivery option and online ordering. We strive to help you not just keep your pet safe, but yourself as well!
The adaptability and flexibility of our business model is just one of the many reasons why our Franchise Owners are primed for success. We constantly stay up to date with trends to make sure we are catering to the needs of our customers and keeping each of our franchise locations busy! Additionally, we offer a variety of services based on the preferences of our customers and their pets. These include washing, grooming, and nail trimming services, as well as our gourmet bakery! Paired with food and product sales, these services offer the Owners of each of our recession resilient pet franchises the potential for tremendous profitability! Last year, our franchises saw average gross revenues of $1,600,972, with our top location earning $1,981,115. With an initial investment starting at $425,050, one can see the potential for success!
But profitability isn’t everything. You want to be truly enjoying what you do every day! That’s not a problem for the owners of our recession-resilient pet franchise, however. After all, Who wouldn’t want to be working alongside dogs and cats every day?! Furthermore, our Franchise Owners are their own bosses, meaning they get to work on their own schedules. They have an ideal work/life balance meaning they can take time off when they need it and spend more time with their families. Additionally, our Franchise Owners can rest easy knowing that the Wag N’ Wash corporate support team has their backs through thick and thin, assisting with whatever challenges may arise. This includes everything from training new employees, pushing marketing efforts, or helping adapt to the ever-changing business climate. Few franchises have this level of support for their owners.
While we reflect on the past few months and the aftermath of COVID-19, many of us see the pandemic as one of the biggest challenges during our lifetime, which is certainly true. At Wag N’ Wash, however, we welcome a nice challenge. We were fortunate to be able to remain at least partially open throughout the entirety of the initial COVID-19 outbreak and adapt our business model to fit the need of our customers and meet safety regulations. By implementing curbside pick-up and online ordering, we were able to successfully keep our customers, Franchise Owners, and their pets satisfied! We’re happy to continue to offer these services moving forward, as well as our usual ones, helping us cater to every kind of customer and their pets!
As we continue to move forward through this challenging year, we look to our amazing Franchise Owners to give our brand voice and to spread our mission. We are currently accepting applicants for select territories across the country! If this sounds like something you would be interested in, don’t hesitate to visit our franchising site today!
As a number of cities in America begin to re-open businesses with strict social distancing guidelines in place, our pet franchise is proud to be welcoming our customers in need of grooming and dog wash services back to our Wag N’ Wash locations! Though we’re deemed an essential business and were therefore open throughout the COVID-19 shutdowns, we have had to limit our interactions with people and their companion animals to curbside pickup, online ordering, and in some cases, delivery of our high-end, all-natural dog and cat food and pet supplies.
In the state of Colorado, where Wag N’ Wash is headquartered, stay-at-home orders gave way to less strict “safer at home” recommendations on April 28. Under these new guidelines, hair and nail salons, as well as grooming salons, are once again able to serve customers, albeit with social-distancing measures in place to protect the health and safety of everyone involved. Local publication The Colorado Sun featured Wag N’ Wash Highlands Ranch as one of the local businesses that had re-opened to booming business and overwhelming success!
In the Sun article, Wag N’ Wash Franchise Owner Katherine Davies demonstrated the new policies in place for our self-serve dog wash facilities, including using every other dog wash tub to adhere to social distancing practices, implementing reservation times for guests who wish to use the self-wash services, and cleaning and disinfecting the tubs and floor “between each and every dog,” as she says.
For customers wishing to drop their matted dog off at the full-service grooming salon for a much-needed spa day, Davies and her staff are having the dog owners wait outside until their groomer texts to say that their companion animal is ready to go. Since full-service grooming has always been done by appointment only, Davies and her crew are able to ensure that only one dog owner at a time is dropping off and picking up from her pet franchise location.
Since Wag N’ Wash was deemed an essential business thanks to our pet food and retail streams of revenue, our locations have remained open throughout the 5-week period when many stores across the country have had to close their doors. Other grooming and pet washing businesses that do not carry dog and cat food or supplies, on the other hand, were forced to close down completely in accordance with shelter-in-place orders that were issued in most American cities to help reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus. Katherine Davies acknowledged to the Sun that if she had not been allowed to sell pet food, she would have struggled more financially. “We are not going to go under, let’s put it that way,” she told the reporter.
As stay-at-home orders begin to lift in a number of U.S. cities, Wag N’ Wash pet franchise locations nationwide will be implementing similar policies to ensure maximum safety of employees and customers in the self-wash and grooming centers. We are excited to begin taking steps toward re-opening two of our most popular services- and giving our Franchise Owners a way to earn more revenue throughout the rest of the year.
The grooming center and self-serve dog wash is also open once more at our flagship Wag N’ Wash location in Monument, Colorado. Living Local, a popular Southern Colorado lifestyle TV program, recently featured our Monument dog wash in a segment about DIY dog-washing tips. General Manager Alex Culbertson walked presenter Mia Atkins through the basics of a great head-to-tail dog wash for viewers at home using her own dog, Marshall, while her other dog, Lily, received a wash from a Wag N’ Wash staff member several tubs down.
Living Local TV reporter Mia Atkins gets a DIY dog wash tutorial from Alex Culbertson, General Manager at Wag N’ Wash in Monument, CO.
The DIY dog wash tutorial not only gained Wag N’ Wash- Monument some great local publicity, but it also served as a handy set of pointers for faithful customers of our pet grooming franchise that are still not quite ready to make an in-store appearance with their companion animals. Since it is of utmost importance to us that our guests are completely comfortable with venturing back into our stores, we’re happy to give out a few dog-washing pro tips in the meantime!
For our Franchise Owners, the COVID-19 pandemic has been a tremendous challenge as they faced numerous restrictions on services that are a cornerstone of our business model. However, they knew they wouldn’t have to worry about going it alone as independent pet care and grooming business owners have had to do. Our Support Team has been there every step of the way to help our Franchise Owners pivot their business model in order to help maximize their earning potential even when it wasn’t possible for customers to bring their dogs for washing and grooming. Now, as we start to see the first signs of life slowly but surely returning to normal, we can envision a brighter future ahead for both our existing and future Franchise Owners across America.
Our pet franchise is awarding new Wag N’ Wash territories in cities across the United States, and we’re looking for passionate, enthusiastic individuals to invest in our recession-resilient business. Please take a moment to visit our Wag N’ Wash pet franchise website and learn more about this amazing opportunity to do what you love every day.
Several months ago, investing in a recession-resilient franchise industry like pet care would have been seen as a smart choice for the future. Today, as the COVID-19 crisis continues to unfold, owning a business in an industry that historically has done well in recessions is essential. Here at Wag N’ Wash, we are proud to be part of an industry often described by experts as recession-resilient. What makes the pet care industry resistant to recessions? Simple. We love our companion animals and will always do whatever it takes to give them the best of everything. That’s why, when other industries are struggling, the pet industry continues to do well, and in some cases, thrive. Take a look at how the pet care industry has weathered past economic storms and see why we’re referred to as a recession-resilient franchise:While businesses in the pet industry generally tend to do well in a recession, Wag N’ Wash has historically been a truly recession-resilient franchise, and we’ve got the numbers to back it up! Our President, Rob Flanagan, had this to say about the subject: “I see almost all pet brands chirping on the fact that the pet industry is recession resilient. This is true! However, here at Wag N’ Wash, we can provide real data from our stores that were open during the Great Recession. We opened 2 locations in 2008. AUV Growth from 2008-2009 was 8.45%. Our Littleton, CO store grew by 22% from 2008-2009. AUV Growth from 2009-2010 was 17.36%. Our Highlands Ranch, CO store grew by 46% from 2009 to 2010 Why? Because we have five separate revenue streams. Because we love our guests’ pets as much as they do. Because pets are treated like family. We are the best pet option during a recession!”
“I see almost all pet brands chirping on the fact that the pet industry is recession resilient. This is true! However, here at Wag N’ Wash, we can provide real data from our stores that were open during the Great Recession:
We opened 2 locations in 2008.
AUV Growth from 2008-2009 was 8.45%.
Our Littleton, CO store grew by 22% from 2008-2009.
AUV Growth from 2009-2010 was 17.36%.
Our Highlands Ranch, CO store grew by 46% from 2009 to 2010.
Because we have five separate revenue streams.
Because we love our guests’ pets as much as they do.
Because pets are treated like family.
We are the best pet option during a recession!”
–Robert Flanagan, President- Wag N’ Wash
However, no matter how well-prepared a business is for riding out an economic setback, nothing could have prepared any industry for how to cope with COVID-19. With people being ordered to shelter in place, many companies have been forced to close their doors- in some cases, permanently. Fortunately, our pet care franchise falls into the “essential business” category, since dogs and cats still need the food, natural supplements, treats and more that our customers rely on Wag N’ Wash to provide. Our in-store experience has changed significantly since the novel coronavirus first made its way into the United States, but our absolute dedication and devotion to helping animal companions live their best lives hasn’t changed one bit! Here’s what we’re doing at Wag N’ Wash to make sure our customers can still receive the outstanding service and quality products they have come to expect from us.
Self-Wash Service With Social Distancing
While our full-service grooming centers are unfortunately closed for the time being, customers can still take advantage of our self-wash service. In order to keep everyone safe and well-protected, we are adhering to social distancing practices recommended by the CDC by allowing no more than 10 people into our self-wash area at one time. We’ll be looking forward to welcoming our favorite customers back to our grooming stations all over the country as soon as we’re able, but until our guests can treat their companion animals to a well-deserved spa day, at least they can still make sure they are freshly bathed and feeling great!
Limiting contact by social distancing has become the new normal for us all, and it is of great importance to Wag N’ Wash Franchise Owners and corporate staff that both our Team Members and customers stay safe and healthy during this unprecedented time. That’s why we have modified our store experience by adding curbside pickup service. This convenient method of shopping allows customers a safe, contact-free way to get the essential pet food and care products they need. We don’t see our Wag Shops as a pet supply or even a retail store. We are the first responders for our guests to ensure that we can continue to help them bond with their companions, and keep ‘em waggin’!And since we’re still Wag N’ Wash, we can’t resist having a little fun with our new setup and making our two-legged and four-legged customers happy when they stop by! Jon Wagner, the Franchise Owner of Wag N’ Wash- Lakeville, Minnesota, set up a whimsical curbside stand for customers to pick up their favorite products without having to set foot in the store, complete with a fun Easter Bunny suit to celebrate from a distance!
Delivery for High-Risk Customers
To our guests, pet food isn’t just an item you pick up anywhere! It is an essential part of the overall health of their companions that they love. Here at Wag N’ Wash, we appreciate that some of our customers have health conditions or underlying issues that further complicate what used to be a simple act of coming to our store and purchasing pet food and supplies. To accommodate our high-risk customers, some Wag N’ Wash stores have taken it upon themselves to personally deliver the supplies these guests need for their companion animals, right to their door! We can provide contact-free delivery to customers who are in need of a little extra assistance during this time. After all, they have always been there for us- we’re proud to be able to be there for them!
Saving the Day From Shipping Delay
Though it can be easy and convenient to order pet food and supplies online most of the time, current conditions have given way to serious supply chain issues and product shortages that can result in a delay of days to weeks for online order delivery. This can spell trouble for people who are at the very bottom of their companion animal’s last bag of food! Fortunately, a trip to Wag N’ Wash can save the day. We’re well-stocked with premium-quality products including natural dog and cat food free from corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors, and by-products. We’re here to help you make sure your companion animal is still eating healthy food even when online ordering isn’t working out. For those who prefer to place an online order and have their products dropped off to their doorstep with zero contact, some Wag N’ Wash locations like our Queen Anne Avenue store in Seattle are offering same-day deliveries for online orders! In addition to being considered a recession-resilient franchise, Wag N’ Wash provides customers with the convenience of getting what they need right when they need it, rather than having to wait for increasingly lengthy shipping times.
Welcoming New Customers and Companion Animals
When times get tough, it’s important to keep looking for silver linings. One of the more positive things that have come out of the COVID-19 crisis is the fact that a large number of dogs and cats have found their “fur-ever” homes! People who are finding themselves spending nearly all of their time at home are increasingly adopting pets, to the point where many animal shelters across the country are reporting that they have found homes for all their adoptable pups and kitties! This pet adoption boom is not only good news for all the companion animals who have traded shelter life for a home and family, but also for Wag N’ Wash Franchise Owners, and other owners of businesses in the pet care industry. Since the joy of having a pet in the family is as recession-proof as the pet industry itself, there will always be a need for an all-in-one shop staffed by knowledgeable people who can answer questions and make expert recommendations for each pet’s individual needs. We’re currently still well-equipped to help new pet parents find all the food, toys, treats, and supplies they need to welcome their new animal companion home, and we look forward to becoming the go-to pet destination for all new dog and cat companions once we’re back up and running at full capacity.
Our Recession-Resilient Franchise is Here For our Customers and Franchise Owners…Now and Fur-Ever!
Wag N’ Wash has always been committed to the health and well-being of companion animals, and now more than ever, we see this as an opportunity to help the dogs, cats, and humans in the communities we serve by making our stores as accommodating as possible during this extraordinary time. As part of a recession-proof industry, we’re confident that we’ll be back to providing customers with the unparalleled in-person service and all-in-one pet shopping experience they’ve come to know and love, but in the meantime, we’re happy to keep coming up with creative new ways to provide our customers with what they need, when they need it.We are also dedicated to providing our Franchise Owners with the highest level of support as they navigate these uncharted waters. We can’t imagine what a crisis like COVID-19 must be like for independent business owners going through this alone- we are here to help our Franchise Owners with whatever they need, now and in the future, with their marketing, financial planning, real estate, and more. Franchise Owners know they can turn to us for the kind of support that helps them stay afloat and plan for better days ahead as we make it through this tough time together.Now’s the time to invest in a recession-resilient franchise. Wag N’ Wash is currently awarding opportunities in territories across the United States. Find out more about us here.Be a social animal- like us on Facebook. Follow us on Instagram. Connect with us via LinkedIn. Subscribe to our YouTube channel.
Wag N’ Wash – The Ultimate Destination for Cats & Dogs
The idea of being the ultimate destination for cats and dogs is an idea that we’ve stood by since our very first store opened in 1999. Our mission is and always will be, “to recognize, promote, and foster the positive impact that companion animals have on their owners” – and this includes through all of the good times and all of the bad times that might occur in the world.
As we are all aware, the Coronavirus, or COVID-19, has thrown the world into a sort of disarray. Due to this, Wag N’ Wash is holding nothing back when making sure that our customers, their companion animals, our employees, our Franchise Owners, and the families of everybody involved, are as safe as possible when it comes to visiting our stores. For more information about the measures that we are taking to keep everybody healthy, you can read more about our COVID-19 Update.
Moving from the present to the future, though, it’s important to remember that all of the craziness that we are all dealing with will eventually pass, life will pick back up, and things will get back to normal. In that regard, though, it’s also important to remember that here at Wag N’ Wash, we have survived all sorts of crazy things over the last 20 years. In addition to residing in the recession resilient pet industry, by sticking true to our mission, Wag N’ Wash has remained and will remain the ultimate destination for cats and dogs.
Recession resilient, or recession-proof industries, are unique. These are the industries that are able to continue selling a product that people will buy no matter what’s happening in the economy, and yes that includes toilet paper. But over the past two decades, not only is pet ownership up but spending on pets is up. The fact is, is that people spend more money on their pets during a recession which means that the pet industry definitely falls into the unique recession resilient industry, as well! Here are some numbers:
Around 85 MILLION families in the United States own a pet
This comes out to approximately 68% of all households
Since 2011, spending on pets has increased almost 7% annually
Over the past 10 years, this number is 4.6% which is THREE TIMES faster than overall consumer spending
Pet care spending grew 29% during the 2001 recession and 17% during the 09-09 recession
Millennials make up 25% of the US population and own 35% of all pets
41% of Baby Boomers over the age of 70 own pets
Fewer than 50% of Baby Boomers have hit 70 which means there’s plenty of room to grow
From Jeff Elgin, of Entrepreneur.com’s “Recession-Proof Franchises” information section (starting a business), “Good times or bad, people will spend large amounts of money providing for their kids or pets. These expenditures can be items that many would consider luxuries, breaking the cycle of leaning toward low-cost providers… In the pet sector, groomers and sellers of boutique accessories will flourish, even during economic recessions.”
Enter Wag N’ Wash – The ULTIMATE destination for cats and dogs.
Additional notes from our President, Rob Flanagan:
I see almost all pet brands chirping on the fact that the pet industry is recession resilient. This is true! However, here at Wag N’ Wash, we can provide real data from out stores that were open during the Great Recession:
We opened 2 location in 2008
AUV Growth from 2008-2009 was 8.45%
Our Littleton Store grew by 22% from 2008-2009
AUV Growth from 2009-2010 was 17.36%
Highlands Ranch grew by 46% from 2009 to 2010
Because we have five revenue streams Because we love our guests’ pets as much as they do Because pets are treated like family We are the best pet option during a recession
For more information on how you can join the recession resilient pet care industry, please visit our franchising site!
With 2020 already in full swing, and with February already almost upon us, we wanted to take a look on some of the noteworthy moments in 2019 that helped our pet store franchise finish the year strong – celebrating our 20th anniversary, being able to add multiple new executive team members, launching new operational tools, and reaching some fantastic fundraising milestones! All of these things that we were able to accomplish in 2019 have us and our Franchise Owners extremely excited for what 2020 is going to hold!
Throughout the final few months of 2019, we welcomed key team members to our corporate headquarters team including Vice President of Marketing, Kristen Wellen, Senior Marketing Manager, Amanda Moore, and Disctric Manager, Brooklynn McMurray. By adding this level of talent, we’ve been able to roll out a new email marketing platform and we’ve been able to introduce a new social media management tool, both of which have already proven to be a valuable investment to help bolster our pet store franchise’s marketing efforts systemwide. This can further be seen by the fact that Wag N’ Wash generated double digit same store sales growth and that we celebrated many notable franchise locations wins including our Phoenix store’s 30% increase in year-over-year sales and the Queen Anne store’s roll out of online ordering.
We are also very proud of the fact that we were able to find opportunities to make the world a better place. In 2019, we were able to run our 2nd annual “Round-Up for Freedom Serivce Dogs” national fundraising campaign in which we were able to raise upwards of $17,000 thanks to our pet store franchise’s loyal customers, employees, and supporters of Freedom Service Dogs. All of these proceeds went towards Freedom Service Dogs’ mission of helping veterans who have made life-altering sacrifices unite with service dogs from the program and all of the dogs are all “rescues and go through extensive training at each state’s penitentiary, followed by additional specialized training to meet the needs of the veterans.” For 2020, the International Franchise Asociation (IFA) recognized our inspiring efforts for this campaign with a “Support Our Veterans” award during its industry-renowned Franchising Gives Back ceremony.
“In our 20th year of business, we’ve made a number of exciting developments that are taking Wag N’ Wash to the next level…but we’re still staying rooted in who we are,” said Rob Flanagan, president of Wag N’ Wash Natural Pet Food & Grooming. “With each innovative tool we introduce to our franchise owners or improvements we make in stores, our end goal is always to enhance the bond between companion pets and their guardians. It’s humbling, yet rewarding to know our efforts have a tremendous ripple effect on our entire organization, and we’re looking forward to another memorable year.”
With our eyes to the future, our pet store franchise is looking forward to continuing to grow our footprint with qualified Franchise Owners who share our ambition and have the skillset necessary to succeed with Wag N’ Wash. If this sounds like you and if you’re interested in joining the Wag N’ Wash family, then we invite you to please visit our Franchise Site where you will find all of the information that’s necessary to do so! You can also fill out the form below to download one of our franchise kits or call the phone number at the top of the screen to talk to one of our Development Managers who would be more than happy to answer any questions that you might have!