Camp Bow Wow's Comprehensive Training Approach Provides Excellent Care For Dogs And Encourages Franchisee Success
By Alison Huff


Camp Bow Wow operates as a daycare and overnight camp for dogs, a place where dog owners can confidently leave their beloved "fur babies" behind, content in the knowledge that not only will their dogs be cared for during their stay, but they'll have a truly enjoyable experience in the process. With a motto that proudly states, "Happy Healthy Pets, Happy Healthy People," Camp Bow Wow has experienced an incredible amount of growth in a relatively short amount of time, an overwhelming success that's due in no small part to its franchise training practices.


Renuka Salinger, who has been with Camp Bow Wow for ten years and currently serves as the Vice President of Development. She told us that "training is the backbone of franchising." As Salinger further explained, "You're buying a proven system and processes, and you're buying the training that goes along with that."

While franchise training covers everything from cleaning up dog poop to completing PNLs, franchise owners should be passionate about dogs and if they have no previous business experience, they must be willing and able to learn the business acumen.

During the on-boarding process, a potential franchisee engages in a series of telephone calls to further explore the brand and to vet their own financial resources before visiting the Camp Bow Wow headquarters in Broomfield, Colorado. Known as "Join The Pack" days, interested parties spend a day and a half touring locations, breaking bread with and receiving presentations from every department head, including the president of the company.

The Bones Of Camp Bow Wow's Training Process
Training begins as soon as the franchisee officially joins the Camp Bow Wow franchise. Initially focused on real estate, franchisees learn every aspect of site selection, the construction project management process, and how to work with the Camp Bow Wow team. From there, franchisees are trained in camp operations. They learn about dog behavior, proper animal care, disease management, and cleaning, which is the most crucial part of running a successful camp.

There are different training modules in place, as Camp Bow Wow employs basic Camp Counselors, Managers, and Shift Leads. All Camp Counselors, the hourly staff at Camp Bow Wow, receive certification in dog management, pet first aid, and CPR. Camp Scouts are the people involved in the marketing program, trained in grassroots local marketing that creates new business and converts walk-in clients. Behavior Buddies are Camp Bow Wow's certified dog training specialists, educated in dog behavior and communication. Home Buddies are trained and certified to administer at-home pet care, including daily walks and proper exercise.

Franchisees have access to Camp Bow Wow's "Scouts Academy," the online university where franchisees and their employees engage in testing to receive all required certifications for each role. Salinger stressed the importance of certified training, especially in service brands. "Basically, people feel like their pets are children nowadays," Salinger said. "We are a premier brand and they are putting their child or pup in our hands to take care of and so we want to make sure they have the very best service and that it’s really safe.”

Franchisees may own more than one unit and training applies to all units; an employee who has completed training for one location becomes certified to work at any other location owned by the franchisee. New content is routinely added to the Scouts Academy to keep things fresh and interesting, and the curriculum is designed to appeal to the millennial generation because they encompass the average employee hire.  

Franchisees are responsible for hiring their own employees, however they do receive training in hiring practices and how to find the best fit for each role. Camp Bow Wow will help a franchisee to train their initial staff, but the franchisee also learns how to train their own employees. As Salinger stated, “If you’re always working in your business and not on it, you’re not going to be as successful.” A franchise owner may have better things to do than wield a pooper-scooper, but they should still know how to do it and how to train their staff to use one. Camp Bow Wow's "train the trainer" model ensures that franchisees can become familiar with every facet of their business and educate new hires later on.

Given the nature of the business, the franchise training process for Camp Bow Wow is extensive. For dog lovers who become successful franchisees, however, it's an incredibly rewarding endeavor.

About Camp Bow Wow
First opened as a single location in Denver, Colorado in December, 2000, Camp Bow Wow began franchising just two years later. Camp Bow Wow has over 130 franchises in operation with more than 30 currently in development. In 2015, the company, whose primary services involve daycare and overnight boarding, generated nearly $100 million in revenue. According to Camp Bow Wow's 2016 Franchise Disclosure Document, the average franchise location generates nearly $757,000 in revenue with top franchises exceeding $1M. Franchise units are independently owned and operated. For more information about Camp Bow Wow and its franchising opportunities, costs, and fees, visit their website.

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