Designer Dogs is 'paw-fect' business move for Charlotte
A YOUNG dale entrepreneur has set up a new dog grooming venture – and whether it’s a shih tzu or St Bernard, no job is too big or small for Charlotte Buck.
The 22-year-old, from Marwood, decided to launch Designer Dogs while furloughed from her job with a veterinary practice during lockdown.
Despite her young age, Ms Buck has a wealth of experience.
After completing her studies at Teesdale School, she joined the vets as an apprentice dog grooming assistant, during which time she studied animal care at East Durham College’s Houghall campus.
After completing her year-long apprenticeship she joined Scruffy Pups, in Darlington, completing a City and Guilds in dog grooming, returning to the vets and taking over the grooming room.
Ms Buck, who comes from a farming background, said she had thought about branching out on her own and being furloughed gave her the chance to broaden her outlook and put plans in place.
A unit suitable for the venture became available at Stainton Grove and she spent a month converting it.
“I always wanted to have my own business. This place came up and it seemed perfect,” she said.
“I was a bit nervous but excited, but I have had a lot of support from customers.
“I have always wanted to work with animals. I could not imagine doing anything else now and it’s even better now I have my own business.”
Ms Buck offers a range of services, including full grooms, puppy grooms, hand strips for breeds with wired coats and claw trimming.
“The most common breeds which come would be cockapoos, westies and shih tzus, but I cater for everybody. I have even done a St Bernard.”
To make sure everything was ready, Ms Buck’s own ten-year-old golden retriever Gemma was first onto the pamper table for a test session. Given the ongoing situation relating to Covid-19, Ms Buck treats one dog at a time and the pamper room is thoroughly cleaned down between appointments.
“I can do five dogs a day and the response has been really good.
“Everyone has been so supportive and my appointments have been filling up fast – I am really grateful.”
She said one of the advantages of running her own business was the flexibility it offers dealing with clients.
“You just want to do your best for your customers,” said Ms Buck.
Now the venture is up and running, Ms Buck said she aims to build up a good customer base and may start stocking some dog-related accessories for sale.
She is open 8.30am to 6pm Tuesdays to Fridays and 8.30am to 12.30pm on Saturdays.
For more details, contact ms Buck on 01833 625550 or search for Designer Dogs on Facebook.