Business Spotlight: Pet Grooming & Boarding in Hammond, LA
Our pets are extensions of our family, and most of us cater to them even more than some human family members! That is why, this week, we sat down with Louise Parra, owner of Posh Pet Cottage to dive into what inspired her to open her pet grooming and boarding business in Hammond, Louisiana.
For more than fourteen years, Posh Pet Cottage has been providing a loving home away from home for the pets of Tangipahoa Parish. Inspired by her love of animals, Louise, a speech therapist by trade, worked at Posh Pet Cottage while attending school at Southeastern Louisiana University. She quickly became a certified pet groomer and decided to take over the family run business in 2005.
- What sets this professional pet sitting and grooming company apart from similar pet groomers in Hammond?
A primary factor that sets Posh Pet Cottage apart would be the extensive amount of flexibility they offer to pet owners. Like most businesses, Posh Pet Cottage has advertised hours; however, you can frequently find Louise or her staff going the extra mile to work with pet owners. Whether it’s traveling out to Loranger to care for a pet while the owner is working late or coming in on Sunday to reunite a family after a long vacation, customer service is a priority for the whole team.
Another area where Posh Pet Cottage differentiates themselves is the level of accommodations they provide. At Posh Pet Cottage, you can opt for a “standard room” all the way up to a “luxury suite” which rivals that of a small bedroom! Plus, with their highly qualified staff, they’re more than capable of handling just about any type of job a client requests. Louise said, “while most of the pets they care for are dogs and cats, they have boarded other animals including hamsters, iguanas, and even the occasional goldfish.” So, whatever your pet, you can rest assured Louise’s team has it under control.
- What was it that made you want to build life as a business owner?
Louise explained how although she had a great job offer as a Speech Therapist upon graduating from SLU, she had other priorities. One of those was being able to spend time with her young family. She knew that a full time job would mean missing a lot of time with her young girls, now 14, 11, and 5.As the granddaughter of Ned and Tucker McGehee, the importance of family was instilled in Louise from an early age. Louise was born and raised in Hammond and grew up in the McGehee home, now Michabelle Plantation. She remembers her childhood being filled with love and laughter and wanted that for her family as well. As a small business owner, Louise had the flexibility to bring her daughters to work versus having to sacrifice those young times with them. In fact, during the summers, you can still find these sweet young ladies helping mom out in the business any day of the week.
- What was the toughest thing you faced after starting the business, and what would you have done differently?
Laughing, Louise stated, “Well, it was probably coming to the reality that there was more to running a pet grooming and boarding business than just grooming and boarding.” Louise explained that expertise in her trade didn’t give her the skills she needed to deal with implications of taxes, employee management or even customer service. “It was all really a learning experience”, said Louise. She feels blessed to have a husband with a business degree and experience to coach her through many of those challenges.
- With respect to the Internet and changes in technology, what is the toughest part about having a business in 2017?According to Louise, the toughest part about technology changes today is that EVERYONE pays with credit cards which is a big expense for small business owners. With high merchant services fees, you really have to find additional ways to generate income and cover those expenses.They also have a website and try to be active on social media, but there seems to be so much information online that it’s hard to figure out where to start. Plus, as Louise giggled, most of their posts lately have been from the I-phone since one of their visitors recently mistook the computer for a fire hydrant! Just another day for Posh Pet Cottage!
- What is the number 1 way you bring in new customers?
While you may have seen the Posh Pet Cottage sign near Range Road, like most small businesses, word of mouth and referrals plays the biggest part in reaching new customers.
- If you had to look 6 months to a year into the future where would you like to see your business?
Louise said that she would love to grow the facility. They currently own the property beside the building and her first goal is to extend the parking area to make it easier for clients to get in and out when dropping off pets. She also would like to add on to the building so that they can move Pet Grooming of Academy of Louisiana, the family owned grooming school, on-site. Moving the Academy on-site will make it easier for Louise and her staff to train new groomers and help clients better understand the intricacies of the grooming process. Pet Grooming Academy of Louisiana is a state licensed school offered by Louise’s family where groomers can get trained in as little as eight weeks.
Let Posh Pet Cottage Be Your Pet’s Home Away from Home
Early evenings, busy days, back to school… autumn is in the air! As summer soon comes to an end, and you begin to juggle the family’s fall calendar, there’s no need to stress over who’s looking after the pets in your household. A professional pet service can bring peace of mind as the season goes into full swing.
An ever-growing number of pet parents in the Hammond area rely on Posh Pet Cottage to care for their animal family while they’re away. The company rests its reputation on integrity, professionalism, and superior service, and clients confirm that the team delivers on that promise with each visit. And remember, it’s never too early to schedule your pet’s boarding reservation for the bustling fall and winter holiday season You can schedule by calling their office at (985) 340-0001.
Thanks again to Louise and the team at Posh Pet Cottage for sharing their story of success with the Tangi Review and the community.
Posh Pet Cottage
Owner: Louise Parra
Phone: (985) 340-0001
43391 South Holly St.
Hammond, LA 70403
Saturday: Grooming opens at 9am & Boarding Pick Up/ Drop off: 9am – 4pm