Established in 2008, Furry Tails Pet Grooming, LLC., is successfully owned and operated by Carlos Hernandez and Lesly Miranda. Furry Tails Pet Grooming, located in the heart of Poinciana, Florida, is an independent, full-service grooming salon that caters to all breeds of dogs and cats and emphasizes convenience for the dog owner.Lesly and Carlos started the business after being professionally trained at the Florida Institute of Animal Arts in Winter Park. They complement their business background with a strong retail, customer service experience, and with membership in the National Dog Groomers Association. However, as they reflect back in their journey they confessed “it all started with a deep sense of passion towards animals…dogs in particular! We love animals and thought pet grooming would be an ideal business venture to go into. It was that simple for us…and family support was key.” But how do you turn a passion for animals into a sustainable business? There is not an easy answer especially when their unique story is filled with challenges from raising enough capital for running operations, limited square footage space, and gaining pet owner’s trust.
Earlier this year, they decided assistance was needed to expand their pet grooming business in Osceola County. Fortunately they had heard of the FSBDC at UCF thru a local newspaper. They met with FSBDC at UCF and started to proactively work with the trials of surviving and thriving in a tough economic climate. The FSBDC’s Certified Business Consultant Rafael Pratts assisted and guided them to refocus on marketing; redefine their target market, look for complimentary product/services to offer, invest marketing dollars wisely, and helped identify effective ways to keep in touch with current and past customers. Equally important, he provided insights into how to properly secure additional working capital for our business operations! “The key to their success will likely be in continuing to offer exceptional high quality service, paying attention to the overall retail image and in being proactive business owners,” commented Rafael Pratts of the FSBDC at UCF.
With that said, Furry Tails Pet Grooming expects to reach 20% projected sales growth by end of 2014. They are more excited than ever about their efforts with the assistance of the FSBDC at UCF to increase overall retail space by 300% and at the same time lowering total retail square footage cost by 30% with new services like washing stations, day care services, and boarding. “We are very grateful to the FSBDC at UCF because they are helping with the expansion of the business”, said Lesly. Best of all, they will strive to expand their commitment to the local charities in Poinciana in more than one way like providing prizes, gift certificates, and dog food for a wide range of different non-profits. Together with this, they even help animals find a new home! Furry Tails Pet Grooming, “where belly rubs are always free.”