WAYNE, W.Va. (AP) — Tired of seeing people being forced to attend training classes in small backyards, basements and garages, the staff of Brown Veterinary Services decided to make a dream years in the making come true — expand the clinic to offer an agility training facility.
The idea to use the vacant building beside the clinic popped up during a staff meeting in November, said Dr. Jennifer Summerfield, practice veterinarian and trainer who specializes in animal behavioral medicine. A little over two months later, BVS opened the doors to the Boarding, Grooming K9 Agility and Training Center.
"This building, with the space and agility equipment, is the only one in the area closer than Columbus," Ohio, Summerfield said. "We have people who regularly come from Charleston to rent the facility to work with their dogs and attend the classes."
Those customers come because great care went into choosing the equipment for the center, said Brandon Dudding, registered veterinary technician and practice manager. He said some of the people they see are very competitive, and would not come if the space and equipment did not meet their standards.
While the center is a great place to train for competitions, it is also a nice place to just have some fun with your dog, Dudding said.
"You can rent the facility out by the hour for almost anything," Dudding said. "Sometimes all the agility equipment is put away and we just have people throw a ball. We want people to know we're here for whatever they need — grooming, boarding, training or just fun, we do it all."
Summerfield said it is not uncommon for people shopping at Walmart across the parking lot to notice through the center's large windows that the dogs are running about and come over to see what's going on.
The excitement shown by people who come into the center for the first time is great to see, Dudding said. Not only does it seem to be filling a need for the area, he said it has also proven to be very profitable for BVS.
"We have not marketed this really at all, just Facebook," Dudding said. "But, grooming and boarding is booming, and almost all of our classes have been full."
Summerfield said she knew the center would do well, but is surprised at just how quickly people have taken to it. The amount of people, especially the regulars, is amazing, she said.
Brown Veterinary Services offers complete veterinary care, boarding, grooming and a wide variety of training classes from agility to obedience. A complete list of classes is offered on the clinic's website, http://brownveterinaryservice.com. For more information, contact BVS at 304-272-6200.
Information from: The Herald-Dispatch, http://www.herald-dispatch.com