Friday, September 1, 2017

Doggy daycare a big hit in Crittenden County

Linda Watson's dream of a friendly kennel-inn for dogs
has been highly successful in Crittenden County.
When Linda Watson quit her job as a medical lab technician in 2012 to open up a daycare service for dogs, her friends thought she was crazy.

“I just woke up one day and decided I didn’t want to do that anymore,” Watson said of her decision to quit her job after 30 years. “I had always wanted to do something with animals but I had given that dream up a long time ago.”

Not many people would entertain the thought of quitting a good-paying job to pursue their childhood passion, but not many people have the work ethic and determination that Watson does. In the months following her departure from the workforce, she began working for Crittenden County Animal Clinic and volunteering at the Mary Hall Ruddiman Canine Shelter.

But while she was cultivating her kind-hearted obsession with animals, she was also doing research. Watson began studying and visiting countless “doggy daycares” in the area, and while most of the prospering businesses she visited were in larger areas, she never lost faith in bringing her idea to a smaller community like Marion.

“I didn’t have a lot of support,” Watson said. “A lot of people thought that in a small town there was no way, but I thought ‘I don’t think so.’ Everybody has a pet just about, and we love ours just as much as city people. I just always felt that I could make it work because it just wasn’t a service that was right here in this area.”

Watson’s unwavering faith in herself led to her childhood dreams coming true. In 2013, she became the proud owner of Buddy and Sissy’s Bed and Biscuit, a boarding and daycare service for man’s best friend.

The goal behind her business was simple: Watch and care for ... (for the rest of this article see the Aug. 24, 2017 printed edition).