How did the idea of creating PatchGuard come about?
The company was called PatchGuard in honor of my Australian Shepherd, patch. A few years ago, we were on vacation with friends in Corsica. Unfortunately I couldn’t take my dog anywhere or leave him alone. When we visit places, like museums or churches, my husband waits outside with our dog. One night we had a banquet and patch began to flirt. I was thinking …
During our stay, I thought that taking care of her dog for a few hours, like we can with kids, was a good idea. So I started searching the internet… and I didn’t find anything. This concept does not exist anywhere. Later, I had the ambition to offer this service in major cities.
Patch the name of your doggie. Can you introduce it to us?
Just my baby! [Rire.] The kids love the Australian Shepherd and I know this variety is right for me. I love to run and he is a dynamic dog, who has to try on his own.
I discovered this by consulting classified ads. At the time, she was 9 months old. Its owners divorced and were forced to separate. A friend, who lives nearby, came to meet him… and told me he knew them! She attended their wedding a few years ago.
Thanks to this stroke of luck and as it inspires confidence, they leave their dog. These people work all day, so the animal is left alone for several hours in a row. They could not take care of him, so they dared to give him to make him happy.
When I can get him, I will. When I get away, he will wait for me in front of the gate. As I tell you, he is right next to me! Now, patch 4 years old and runs with me 3 times a week. This dog changed my life!
© Laetitia Lacote
On your website, we read the following sentence: “PatchGuard is your dog’s life-changing service. Our question is: How?
Dogs can now accompany us on holidays or short tourist trips. In 2021, I went, at my expense, to the Cité de l’Automobile in Mulhouse. The owners can’t visit it with their doggies, so they drop it on PatchGuard. A real success!
The goal is for the dog to have as much fun as the human being in caring and playing with friends. Recently, I picked up a Golden Retriever and a Labrador that I never knew. After an hour, they almost fell asleep on top of each other!
I think it’s very important for dogs to socialize, especially since incarcerations have been linked to the Covid-19 pandemic. Families adopt 4-legged companions who may not have seen other animals at this time.
It was also a “revolution” for the owner …
That’s right! I want to change the mentality of the people, of the 18 million dog owners. the Central Canine published a study outlining that a third of French people own a dog; 94% of them consider him a full-fledged family member.
I really want to try to bring the dog back to the heart of society. There’s no reason why we can do so many activities with kids, but not with our pets. With the dog daycare service, owners finally have the opportunity to visit places that interest them without restrictions.
© Laetitia Lacote
Are there any necessary conditions for admission of a dog?
The dog should be updated on his or her vaccinations, identified and have a collar or harness tailored to his or her morphology. Last year, I noticed that a lot of animals were left out. I think it’s usually a lack of information. If clients come with a stuffed animal wearing a choke collar, for example, I’ll explain to them why it’s not appropriate. To keep the dogs safe to walk, I bought a ribbon leash. An accident can happen right away …
Then, I won’t accept a woman in the heat. As for categorized dogs, I welcome them. I have it in store. Besides, I put cages when I need to “isolate” an animal. Of course, doggies don’t stay locked up for long.
In concrete terms, how does dog sitting work?
Reservations can be made directly on the website Patch-Guard.co.uk or on the site. For information, we can legally keep 9 dogs. Then, I wrote a “certificate of deposit”. Then, the owners say goodbye to their doggies and pick them up after a few hours. In France, we are not accustomed to taking care of dogs; 95% of my clients haven’t done this yet.
From the moment I was in charge of an animal, I no longer did any other work in the same way. I walked him over and put him to sleep if he wanted to. To inspire it, I provide toys, search mats, and more. Of course I love him very much. I took care of him, I looked like him. I already found myself sitting in the middle of 4 dogs, hugging them!
In fact, I proposed a concept that didn’t exist; I had to make a prototype. With my spouse, we bought a caravan The good corner and we made it dog-friendly. The area is air-conditioned in summer and warm in winter. on StrasbourgI had a modular structure during the Christmas market.
In terms of price, I asked for 10 € for an hour of care.
© Laetitia Lacote
What dates to remember this year?
I return to Strasbourg from July 11 to December 25, 2022, more precisely at 4 rue de la Customs. I would benefit from a room of 60 m2close to Batorama (a boat tour agency), the cathedral and the museums banned by our furry friends.
Other dates to remember: from July 11 to September 11, PatchGuard open to Camp Sandaya Peneyralsclose to Sarlat-la-Caneda. Customers have the opportunity to enjoy surrounding sites, such as the cave Lascaux or even the Padirac bung-aw, as well as the swimming pool while their pooch plays with his friends. This is 1er campsite in France to offer dog daycare.
Finally, from June 27 and until September 18, I offer my services to Besancon. I installed on Chamars Towerwas built in 1687 by Vauban. Dogs can even emit steam in an area opposite.
What is the profile of PatchGuard members?
Above all the love of dogs is important. You have to keep them and take care of them. I still want the staff to PatchGuard may at least hold ACACED*, a State -recognized diploma (my husband and I have it). This proves human investment and it is important to know that it is not the job of the student. on Besancona young woman who has completed her dog behavior training will join the team.
In 2021, I keep 200 dogs, which allows me to learn a lot, especially about the nature and behavior of animals. And then we have a chance to meet doggies we’re not used to seeing. Last year, we kept a Komondor for example!
* Certificate of Knowledge for Domestic Species Pets.
© Laetitia Lacote
Also read: School children make their pen available to dogs in a shelter to help them be adopted (video)
For now, you will place yourself in the Alsatian region. Do you plan to go ahead and target the entire national territory?
In fact, because there are many places where dogs are not allowed. This year, PatchGuard selected along with 7 other startups at the national level to participateAlps Tourism Lab. So I hope the dogs stay, while their masters ski on the slopes.
Another “evolution” is to keep the doggies of employees in industrial areas, and to provide a competitive advantage in finding staff.
Finally, I was looking for pilot sites that were interested in my concept, which I wanted to develop under brand licensing.
I considered PatchGuard as a fresh start in the tourism sector; I was the first to say: You have to take care of the doggies so that their owners can visit different places. »I’ve made a lot of calls for projects, but I don’t have any financial help, just competition Distancia, for which I am grateful. I am also the winner of the 2022 French Petfriendly Trophy and the 2021 Alsace Tourism Trophy.
I fought and I kept going, because there was a need and need in this field. Above all, I want, one day, to do as many activities and outings as possible with my patch.
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