Dog’s life proves prof­itable

DAILY GRIND Pam­per­ing your pooch is a boom­ing in­dus­try th­ese days. Ka­rina Aba­dia talks to en­tre­pre­neur Andy Evans about his lat­est ven­ture that pro­vides nat­u­ral snacks for dogs.

Central Leader - - NEWS -

They say you are what you eat. Surely the same ap­plies to your best friend, right?

Andy Evans started a dog treat de­liv­ery ser­vice called Bow Wow Box about three months ago, after notic­ing a gap in the mar­ket for pet own­ers.

‘‘We’re see­ing quite a large move­ment away from glute­nous and wheat-based foods to a more nat­u­ral diet,’’ he says.

‘‘The same is be­ing repli­cated in what peo­ple are feed­ing their dogs.’’

The Grey Lynn res­i­dent didn’t spend too much time re­search­ing the mar­ket. He just went with his instincts and launched the business.

‘‘What we’re try­ing to do is give peo­ple stuff they won’t see in their reg­u­lar su­per­mar­kets.

‘‘All the treats are nat­u­ral and don’t have fillers or any­thing like that. It’s along the raw diet vein that dogs should be eat­ing.’’

Sub­scribers re­ceive a box once a month con­tain­ing a toy, dog treats and chews from around the world.

Business is go­ing so well that Evans al­ready has plans to ex­pand.

Cat lovers will be able to pur­chase the Meow Wow Box from next year.

Evans, 42, got into the pet business in 2007 when he bought the dog-mind­ing company Guardians.

He spent three years con­sol­i­dat­ing the business, be­fore giv­ing up his job as a business de­vel­op­ment man­ager.

Guardians cov­ers five fran­chised ter­ri­to­ries across Auck­land and Evans looks after 60-odd dog min­ders in the cen­tral area.

The se­lec­tion process is rig­or­ous and a lot of ef­fort is put into suit­able matches, Evans says.

‘‘You have to take into ac­count the en­vi­ron­ment the dog is be­ing put into and what the min­der is ca­pa­ble of, as well as the needs of the dog. You can’t place a twoyear-old boxer with a 75-year-old re­tiree, for ex­am­ple.’’

Evans spends much of his work­ing day at his Cus­toms St of­fice re­spond­ing to en­quiries from cus­tomers, fran­chisees and min­ders.

He also gets out of the of­fice to as­sess the suit­abil­ity of po­ten­tial min­ders’ homes.

It’s a bit of a jug­gling act run­ning two busi­nesses, but it’s worth it, he says.

‘‘I can do what I want, when I want and how I want.

‘‘There are op­por­tu­ni­ties to grow the business and it gives me the abil­ity to have that work-life bal­ance which is so im­por­tant.’’

Photo: KA­RINA ABA­DIA

Niche mar­ket: En­tre­pre­neur Andy Evans with his dog Sally. Evans has started a treat de­liv­ery ser­vice called Bow Wow Box.

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