We have teamed up with our sister business, Pampered Pooch Playground and our friends at Westgate Pet Clinic to raise money, food and treats for Good Karma Animal Rescue. All food and treats need to be un-opened. Starting Friday, November 24th until January 1st you can make donations at any of our locations or online by clicking here. If you donate $50 online, by clicking here you will receive a $5 gift card to Bubbly Paws.
As many of you know, Bubbly Paws is a locally owned small and we are also very supportive of other Minnesota small businesses. Recently we have received many calls from customers asking:
"What happened to Bone Adventure"
"Did Bone Adventure go out of business?"
We always hate to see any small business close, much less one that we personally liked and felt like it was a great part of the community. We would often run into the owner of Bone Adventure at events and fundraisers and had a great business relationship with them. We have heard some rumors of why they closed all 3 locations (Edina, North Loop and 48th and Chicago in Minneapolis), but without anything that is verified, we don't want to spread rumors and that is not our style to gossip. There are very few small, locally owned pet stores and it saddens us when we see one go out of business or get taken over by one of the large companies.
We often sent our own customers to the 50th and France Bone Adventure when we did not have a leash, collar, sweater or something that they were looking for. We also sent our grooming customers there if we were booked out too far.
Just know that we personally miss them as much as you do!
It seems like just yesterday that Lill, our General Manager just started working at our Saint Louis Park store. I remember her first day very clearly, it was almost 6 years ago, the day before Thanksgiving. I remember it so well because she fit right in, and immediately understood how to interact with customers, and really loved the job. Lill has been with us since the beginning and was a huge reason that we were able to expand and she worked her way up to our General Manager position. She was there for each store that we opened, but more importantly, she LOVES Bubbly Paws and coming to work. In a nut shell, Lill is a small business owners dream team member as her passion, and love of the company came through in everything she did! After 6 years, Lill has decided to move on, and we are very excited for her and sad at the same time! She has been such a HUGE part of our work and personal family and know she will go on to great things! Thanks Lill, for an AMAZING 6 years!!
Love to workout? How about working out with your pooch? We have teamed up with TangleTown CrossFit for a "Hero Dog WOD". This is the perfect workout whatever your skill set, for people that have never tried CrossFit to those that have competed. There is a $20 donation that goes to Pets Loyal to Vets, which a a local non-profit that trains service and therapy dogs for vets that have PTSD. Click here for more details and to sign up on the TangleTown CrossFit website.
Bubbly Paws and Pampered Pooch Playground have teamed up with Good Karma Animal Rescue to raise funds and supplies to help the relief effort at animal shelters in Texas. Good Karma Animal Rescue will be heading to Texas to bring some of the shelter dogs back to Minnesota to find a forever home (these are dogs that were in the shelter/rescue system before the hurricane hit). When they make their way back to Minnesota, Bubbly Paws will be hosting a night with a local vet to check over the dogs and our staff will be bathing them (all free of charge).
You can make a donation directly to Good Karma online by clicking here or at any of the Bubbly Paws stores or at Pampered Pooch Playground.
Good Karma was recently on FOX 9 talking about their efforts.
At Bubbly Paws, we love to give back to the pet community, which is why we have created our own team for the Twin Cities Strut Your Mutt. Each member of our team will receive a $10 Bubbly Paws gift card for joining and the top fundraiser will win a gift basket worth over $100. Thanks for supporting us in our mission of giving back. Click Here to join our team!
Bubbly Paws is honored to be selected as one of America's Coolest Pet Businesses! Click Here to read the whole article!
Three pet stores and eight honorable mentions have been chosen “America’s Coolest” by Pets+, “The Magazine for the America’s Pet Pros,” in its inaugural contest.
The America’s Coolest Stores Contest highlights the best examples of independent pet businesses throughout the United States. They are judged by a panel of retail experts on the basis of busi- ness practices, history, online presence, traditional advertising, interior decor and curb appeal.
Co-Owner of Bubbly Paws, Keith Miller commented “We have worked so hard with our 3 (soon to be 4) stores to create a unique look and feel that has never been done before. We did not come in 1st place, we are honored to be on a list with so many other great businesses, and I consider that a huge win!”
Bubbly Paws opened their first store in St Louis Park, MN in 2011 and has 2 more locations in St. Paul and Maple Grove. The 4th store in Minneapolis is slated to open in October. Bubbly Paws offers the popular self-service dog wash, but also has full time groomers on hand to make your pooch look and feel their best.
Co-Owner of Bubbly Paws, Patrycia Miller commented “One thing that makes us unique is the bright and clean setting where customers are excited to bathe their dog. Our groomers go the extra mile of offer a low stress setting while pampering each pooch.”
Without further ado, here is a list of winning stores:
1. Jungle Bob’s Reptile World, Selden, NY
2. The Animal Connection, Charlottesville, VA
3. The Hungry Puppy, Farmingdale, NJ
2015 Honorable Mentions
Bubbly Paws, St. Louis Park, MN
Camp Canine NY, New York, NY
Dee-O-Gee, Bozeman, MT
Maxwell and Molly’s Closet, Newton, NJ
Odyssey Pets, Dallas TX
Shop Dog Boutique, Sioux Falls, SD
The Feed Bag Pet Supply, Mequon, WI
WOOF WOOF Pet Boutique & Biscuit Bar, Bristol, RI
“We feel privileged to bring our readers the best of the best in our industry,” said Ralf Kircher, Pets+ editor-in-chief. “Winning stores often have amazing product lineups and are impressive to look at. But a store wouldn’t really fit our ‘cool’ criteria if it weren’t for such aspects as innova- tive marketing, creative retail environment and a unique work culture.”
CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE SEGMENT.
Summer is cabin time for many Minnesotans, and if you’re taking your dog to the family retreat, safety is important.
Bubbly Paws co-owner Keith Miller shares five great tips to help keep your best friend healthy and happy:
1. Protect dog from bugs with
2. Bring life jacket for your dog
3. Provide water and shade
4. Make sure your pet has an ID tag
5. Bring first aid kit
Bubbly Paws is a self-service dog wash and growing salon with three locations in the Twin Cities.
Friday’s segment featured an American pit bull terrier named Mercedes. He needs a loving forever home.
Mercedes is available for adoption now through Secondhand Hounds.
One of the many things that makes the Twin Cities so great is that there are so many dog friendly stores, restaurants and breweries.
Before getting to the tips, let’s start with some basic patio etiquette.
Know your dog - not all dogs enjoy going to the patios and being in large noisy settings. If you don’t think your pooch will have fun going leave them at home.
Make sure the restaurant / brewery is dog friendly. The easiest way to to look on their website, or a great resource is sidewalkdog.com
Ask other guests if they are ok with the dog being around.
1- Feed them first. When going to public patios there will always be food around and as you know, dogs LOVE food. One way to keep the begging to a minimum is to bring them after they have eaten a meal. Chances are if you bring your pooch hungry, they will start acting out and creating a scene.
2 - A tired dog is a good patio dog. Bring them to the dog park or take them on a long walk before hitting up the patio. If they are tired, they are more likely to lay down and relax.
3- Forget the Flexi - when you are in public it is best not to use the retractable leashes. These leases make it tough to control the dogs. One of my favorite leashes is made by Stunt Puppy, which is a Minnesota company, and you can clip the leash to your chair or table.
4- bring water - it might sound like common sense, but not all restaurants and breweries will provide water bowls for the dogs. It is always best to come prepared.
5- Bring distractions - If you have a smaller dog, not all of them enjoy laying on concrete, so bring a small bed for them. You can also bring a few of their favorite toys and snacks to help keep them distracted. Some restaurants will bring special doggy treats, but don’t always count on it, come prepared!
Some of our favorite dog friendly patios
Pizzeria Lola in Southwest Minneapolis.
3 Squares in Maple Grove
Sisyphus Brewing - they are dog friendly inside and outside and often have dog adoption events.
Meet Ivan from Heart of Border Collie Rescue. He is a super sweet dog. He first entered the rescue with some chemical burns on his back, head and legs. After much work his foster family has helped him heal and he is ready for his forever home. He is good with Kids, Cats and other dogs. Loves playing fetch and the frisbee is his new passion, but he is also happy sitting in a lap giving kisses. Click Here for more details on Ivan.
The idea for Keith and Patrycia’s business was born out of annoyance with a frequent chore. Every time they had to bathe and brush their Bernese Mountain Dog, Roxy, they were left with mess and fur all over their house.
So they opened Bubbly Paws, a place where frustrated dog owners like them could wash their dogs without having to worry about the mess. Since opening in 2011, Bubbly Paws — a self-service dog wash and grooming salon — has expanded to three locations in Minneapolis, plus an online shop.
In January, Bubbly Paws took over our Instagram account for the day to show us just what it’s like to run a self-service dog wash and grooming business (spoiler alert: there are a lot of cute dogs).
People seemed to love the sneak peek into their business, so we reached out to Keith to talk a little more about the challenges of running three stores, the habits that have made Bubbly Paws successful, and the best advice they have for other small business owners.
Square: What is the first thing you do when you get to work in the morning?
Keith: You know, a lot of it really depends on what’s going on. I normally walk into one of the stores around 9:30 a.m. And by that time, some of our groomers have already been there for two hours grooming dogs. So sometimes we deal with issues they might be having or with stuff that might have happened the night before.
And then we get the store ready for the day. We see the customer comments and complaints that have come in overnight. One of the things that we use is the feedback on the receipts. My wife and I actually go through each one of them personally and read and respond to it, whether it’s good or bad.
Bubbly Paws Instagram Stories during its takeover
Square: You have three locations, how do you balance that on a day-to-day basis?
Keith: We put ourselves on the schedule and work a front-desk shift at least four days a week, which I think helps keep us grounded. I think each of the locations is so unique and the customers are so different at each place, that it helps when we do our marketing [to be in the store]. Or if there is a complaint, we get to know the [customers], we get to know what’s going on. So we really try to be involved with each [location].
When I think of how many times people have just said something in passing like, “Hey, you know what? I wish you guys had this.” And then we start talking about it, “Why don’t we have that?” One lady was like, “I really wish I could buy the shampoo that you guys use.” So then next week, guess what? We’re selling the shampoo.
Square: What do you look forward to doing every day?
Keith: Honestly, the fun part is dealing with the dogs. Really getting to know them. You see some dogs that come in for grooming that are just so excited to come in. I’d say that’s probably a third of the dogs.
And then educating new dog owners — here’s the way that you should be brushing the dog, here’s how we can help save you money on grooming down the line, and just helping them whether it’s stuff related to our business or not.
Square: What is your least favorite task to get through every day?
Keith: You know, I think the least favorite [task] would probably be bookkeeping. I don’t think anybody really loves doing that. We use QuickBooks and try to make sure everything is in the right order for our accountant. I try to keep on top of the mess and do it every day so I’m not sitting at the end of the month trying to catch up.
The other thing is dealing with negative feedback that comes in. Nobody wants to hear anything bad about your business — we’re in customer service. I would say 99% of the people are always happy, but you’re always going to have that [small percentage of people] where something went wrong or we screwed up. And you don’t want to any [of it] to be negative, but seeing it makes you stronger … how you handle that mistake is what matters.
Square: What still surprises you about running your own business?
Keith: You know, I think the fact that you’re expected to know everything when you don’t always know everything. You’re supposed to have every answer to every situation at any time, and just be an expert on that. And I think that it’s the hardest thing to get ready for.
Square: What daily habits have made your business successful?
Keith: It’s not even really related to the dog wash. I do CrossFit every morning at 6:30. I think … it’s helped me de-stress from the business. It’s time just to get away and not think about [the business], which, in a roundabout way, helps you grow it.
The other thing that we do … I mean, try owning a business with your wife. If you think about it, your work day never really ends because you could be working all the time. So we try and set a limit — we don’t talk about work after five o’clock. We really try to leave work at work and focus more on our own personal time at home, which for the most part works really well.
Square: What is the best piece of advice you were given when you started to expand?
Keith: One thing that really helped us was knowing that you don’t market to yourself. You draw a picture of who your average consumer is going to be and describe her — it’s a 27-year-old woman, working full-time, might be in a relationship, has a dog. And that’s who you market to, but you never market to yourself, or your wife, or people that you know. You basically just create the fake person that is your average customer and do everything around that. How would this person react if they saw an ad like that?
Square: What piece of advice would you give other people starting businesses?
Keith: I think the one thing that helped us is that we just went all in. I mean I know that that’s scary to do, but I’ve watched other people do it, I think it helps to really succeed. Just going all in, then you have to succeed. Your paycheck’s basically based on you succeeding.
Learn more about sellers like Bubbly Paws (and like you) on our Instagram — @square.
KARE 11 stopped out to our Maple Grove store to see what our political poop bags are all about!
Bubbly Paws and our sister business, Pampered Pooch Playground have created "Team Paws and Pooch" for the Strut Your Mutt 5K Run/Walk on Sunday, September 11th at Wolfe Park in St Louis Park. We are currently working on putting together a great goodie bag including:
- Custom Team Paws and Pooch T-shirt (must sign up by September 1st)
- $10 Bubbly Paws gift card
- Free 2 hour evaluation at Pampered Pooch Playground, or free nail trim for current customers.
- Fee pint of beer from sisyphus brewery.
- Snacks and goodies
- And more!
For the person that raises the most money on our team, they will score a $50 Bubbly Paws OR Pampered Pooch Playground gift card.
A Big thanks to WCCO TV for stopping out to Paws on Grand at our St Paul store. We love to sponsor such a great event! You can watch the full video below.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Hundreds of dogs filled St. Paul’s Grand Avenue on Sunday for the annual Paws of Grand event.
Grand Avenue businesses partner with local animal rescue organizations. The event features lots of pet-friendly activities, like a pet photo booth and fashion show.
“Well it’s great, brings a lot of awareness to dog rescue groups and dog related non-profits. It also gets dogs adopted, but also provides a fun, free activity for families to do,” Lill Luce with Bubbly Paws said.
Bubbly Paws and several other businesses along Grand offered special deals and discounts on Sunday.