The ProPet team attended the Pet Boarding & Daycare Expo in Hershey, PA, and we loved it! It was an action packed and fun-filled week where we got to meet so many amazing people in the pet industry. We arrived at the Hershey Lodge & Convention Center late on Tuesday night, weary from our long travel from Ottawa, but were greeted at the front desk with a warm smile and a big bar of chocolate. It is pretty safe to say that chocolate was plentiful for the entire trip!

 

Hershey Lodge & Convention Center, ProPet Software, Pet Boarding & Daycare Expo

The Hershey Lodge & Convention Center

 

The hotel is a beautiful venue, reflective of Hershey’s rural heritage, and offers a great space for pet professionals to meet and greet. We headed upstairs bright and early Wednesday morning to check out the expo, and we were amazed by the energy and excitement that filled the room. There were so many amazing booths created by pet professionals looking to network and showcase their products and services. While we didn’t exhibit this year, we really loved the chance to walk and talk with kennel owners, pet business startups, and entrepreneurs from all over North America. There were many informative seminars on both pet and business topics that were great for gaining knowledge and business tips! Courtney, the manager of Briar Meadows in Smithville, Ontario attended the Expo and gave us some great feedback on a few of the seminars that she attended:

“The first seminar we attended was ‘How to Speak your Employees Language’ presented by Joanne Morris. I was very excited to attend this one and I don’t think anyone left that seminar disappointed. Joanne was a fantastic presenter and had a really entertaining slideshow to go along with. Joanne made everything very easy to understand and made her presentation applicable to small businesses with 6-10 employees to larger businesses with 50-100 employees. There were a lot of good points that she covered from right when you hire an employee to keeping employees. One of the topics she discussed that I really liked was completing “stay interviews” with your staff. I had never heard of that before but loved the idea and I will be implementing that with our kennel. Another point she talked about was “what you think you are doing to help your staff, your staff may not see that as helping.” To me, this really stuck out and got me thinking about a lot of the things I try to do to help my staff, but my staff may not see that as helping, they may see it as micromanaging them, or not trusting their judgement etc. I really enjoyed this presentation and would go see another presentation Joanne was doing in a heart beat! Overall a 10/10.”

“The second presentation I attended was ‘Liabilities, Contracts and Vaccine Protocols’ presented by Steven and Jason Parker. I cannot say enough good things about this presentation. Steven and Jason were so professional with how they spoke and carried themselves and were real role models and business leaders to aspire to be like. Steven talked about their past experiences both good and bad to help us from making the same mistakes. They were both very open with their policies and their business morals which helped everyone see how they are so successful. The one take away point for me and I think a lot of other people there, is that we (as kennels) need to be very transparent to our clients. Kennels who offer daycare, know there is always a risk of injury when dogs play together for example. Steven talked about how clients need to know all the risks involved, so you don’t have unhappy or misinformed clients, the more transparent we can be, the better. Steven and Jason were both very entertaining presenters and funny too. I think everyone who attended this seminar left with about 2 or more pages of notes and their brains on over drive with changes to be made at their own facilities. At the end of the presentation, both Steven and Jason stayed afterwards to answer any questions we had and didn’t leave until everyone had a chance to get their answers; it was really great to see how much they cared about helping other kennel owners and managers. Overall another 10/10.”

Pet Boarding & Daycare Expo, Expo, ProPet Software

A Sneak Peek of the Expo

 

ProPet Software hosted a meet & greet on Wednesday evening so that we could have the chance to meet with some of the attendees face to face. We had a great turnout and even got the chance to show off our software a little bit! The tradeshow finished strong on Thursday, and we had one more decision to make…do we go to Chocolate World?

 

Chocolate World, Hershey, ProPet Software, Pet Boarding & Daycare Expo

Debbie Moffat (CEO) and Kayla Hunt (Director of Marketing) at Chocolate World

 

The answer is YES! We decided to have a little extra fun before jumping back on the plane to Ottawa. In the town where even the street lights are Hershey’s Kisses, it would just be shame not to visit Chocolate World. We had a great time checking out all of the treats, and maybe even took a few goodies home with us. We made some great connections while at the Expo and look forward to exhibiting in the future!

 

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