Case Study- Shirley Rands Barking Mad Northants

Industries 
We have taken the traditional services available in a parlour and made them even better. At Barking Mad we have developed a new and ergonomically designed van as a mobile salon which is equipped with the latest hydrobath and grooming facilities, bringing you everything you require for clients’ dogs, from a simple wash and brush up to a full professional groom. Barking Mad Professional Mobile Dog Grooming is a member of the British Dog Groomers' Association part of the Pet Industry Federation. Barking Mad Ltd is also a member of the Pet Services Association.
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Barking Mad

  Opportunities:
In the UK
  Business Type:
  Minimum Investment:
  Training Provided:
Yes
  Home-based:
Yes
  Part time:
Yes
  BFA Membership:
Member - Full

Read this article to find out Shirley’s story as a Barking Mad franchisee!

Barking Mad Franchise

“I was looking for dog care for a weekend in July that I would be away. My problem was that my Westie, Deefer, was on medication for Addison’s disease and keeping him stress-free was key and I knew I couldn’t leave him in kennels.

My mum had seen a programme on TV where Barking Mad was featured. She mentioned it to me as it offered a personal one-to-one care where Deefer would be looked after in someone else’s home, great! This was just what I needed and I went straight on their website for more information. I had a flick around the pages, reading all about the service and thought this was perfect.

At this time I was working as a local branch manager with a major high street bank and was now in my 20th year of my career. 2010 was a very tough year and, prompted by the “want everything yesterday” mind-set of the bank, I was ready for a change. But what? Whilst I was on the Barking Mad website I saw the franchise tab and read about how I could join Barking Mad and run my own business.

This was a very exciting prospect and it really captured my imagination immediately. I read on and ended up sending off for a franchise pack for more information. I also spoke to my partner, family and researched other franchises via the bfa website. I then spoke to my local vets and groomers to see if it would be a welcome service in the area. I became really excited and realised it ticked all my boxes, and as it also gave me the opportunity to work from home it would be great for Deefer as well.

I arranged a meeting with Lee Dancy, managing director of Barking Mad, where we went into a lot more detail about the company and how I’d fit in to its model. Lee and everyone at head office were so inviting and helpful, I felt part of the team already.

Lee and the team helped with my office set-up and showed me how to get the most out of my new business; then I was off!

I haven’t looked back with so many lovely dogs out there I look forward to going to work and meeting them, as well as the people. I consider my hosts as friends and I love to see the joy the dogs bring to their lives as well. I now also employee someone to help me with those busy days and to promote the business. It perhaps was a gamble at first, not knowing if it would be as popular as I needed it to be, but I look back now and feel it was a gamble worth taking.

For me it was more of a lifestyle choice and doing the best to help Deefer, as well as retaining some sanity from what I consider now as my ‘previous life’. People sometimes call me ‘Barking Mad’ and sometimes I have to agree with them! So perhaps it was fate that I found Barking Mad, who knows, but I’m enjoying myself and that’s what life is all about.”

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