Whether the ‘stay-cationers’ will be flocking to the Poconos from nearby NY, NJ and Philly, or those from afar will venture here for a summer in the mountains, one thing is for sure: they all need somewhere to board their dogs. Rosemarie Sangiorgi is betting that they choose her brand new spacious kennel in Bushkill, just over the Monroe County border.
“I’m starting to get more people calling to make reservations. The season is just beginning,” says Sangiorgi, the owner of Bushkill Boarding, now under new management. “I feel that as people see my facility and my ‘home away from home’ approach to taking care of their pets, they will bring them here.” Under her tutelage since November 2009, the facility has 40 indoor/outdoor kennels and a common area where dogs that behave well with others can walk around in a ‘free range’ type setup, a feature that sets this apart from most other kennels. Dogs with special dietary requirements, those that need to take medication, or need extra play time are not a problem. Sangiorgi also runs a doggy daycare at the site, and offers bathing and grooming as well as special fundraisers and obedience training. The business also sells pet products like leashes, collars, snacks and toys.
New to the dog biz but always an animal lover, the former New Yorker had owned and operated a pizzeria in Rockland County (NY) and designed office space for many years. She understands her clientele is the family or individual looking for a place that will really take care of their ‘babies.’ As to why she went into this line of business, she says it’s due to “my love of animals and the need in this area for a nice, clean and loving place for local residents and visitors to feel confident that their pets will be cared for.”
Will more people need these services as the summer approaches? It might seem so. The Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau’s Executive Director Carl Wilgus says tourism indicators are suggesting an upswing in leisure travel this summer. “The last four months (January 2009 through Mach 2010) were all better than the same months the previous year. We feel we are well positioned for a rebound in what otherwise has been a difficult year and a half for our industry.”
Future plans at the 5,000 square-foot dog domicile include hiring a part-time veterinarian and offering low-cost vaccination clinics as well as spay and neuter clinics. “We would like to educate pet owners about nutrition and (provide) up-to-date information about their pet’s health concerns by offering seminars hosted by experts in these specific fields,” adds Sangiorgi.
Photo caption: Rosemarie Sangiorgi with some of her canine clients. Photo credit: Bushkill Boarding