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Amazing Topics, Incredible Speakers

Best Practices on Staff Hiring and Staff Retention (the information you REALLY need to survive today's hiring challenges) from an expert in the field

Andrea Hoffer from AHA! Business Consulting and The Dog Gurus will provide the best tips on interviewing possible candidates and training them to build your dream team! 

  • Discover Who You Need on Your Team & Create Your Irresistible Job Posting. This workshop will walk you through thoughtful, relevant questions and exercises that will get your focus in the right place before you write the first line of your job posting. Then, during the work session, we’ll help you craft an irresistible job posting that will attract your dream employee, and quickly weed out those who don’t make the cut.
  • Your Dream Candidates & Develop Your Recruitment Marketing Plan Now that you did the discovery work necessary to know who you are seeking, it is time to dive into the candidate persona.  This is where we start to outline your potential candidate’s needs, wants, and hang-outs.  Don’t know where they hang-out online and off?  Ask your current team members.  The information will help you during the work session where we will be creating your recruitment campaign to drive candidate traffic.
  • Recognize Your Dream Candidate In the Interview & Interview Questions The interview is often where we, as employers, fall short.  How do we know what questions to ask and if the candidate responses are good ones?  How do we even know if the candidate is telling us the truth?  Short of using a lie detector, there are methods to learning if the candidate in front of you is the best fit for position and culture. In this workshop, we will walk through the formula to developing result-orient interview questions and learn cues to listen for in candidate responses.  During the work session, you will write your own interview questions and answer key to use during your next interview.

Tools to Help Raise Staff Wages and Stay Profitable

To compete for staff you need to increase staff wages, but how do you do that and keep your business profitable? In this session you’ll learn how to establish wage ranges, payroll budgets and use a staff forecasting tool. With this data you gain power to plan revenue growth, reduce discounts or raise rates to cover the rising cost of wages in your pet business.


Generating More Revenue from the Clients You Already have

An easy way to increase revenues is to sell more to your existing clients. In this session you’ll learn the secret to successfully marketing to your existing clients and ideas on what you can sell to them. By understanding your customer value journey and creating customized marketing funnels for each stage you’ll find a low-cost strategy to increase revenues. PLUS..we will offer a special discussion on memberships. Don’t be left behind the growing pet services trend of adding memberships to your pet business. If you’ve been wanting to add a membership component and not sure how to make it work we will have a session and panel discussion just for you! If you already have a membership program, our experts will share new ideas to take your membership to the next level. The Dog Gurus will also be announcing a super easy way for every pet business to sell a “done for you” membership to your clients.

Creating a Culture that Attracts and Retains Staff

It’s more important than ever to retain A-team players. The key is creating a culture that is positive and team focused. In this session you’ll select two ideas to implement in your pet business from our coaches top ten proven strategies that help create a culture that attracts and retains staff.

How to explain the value of your services so clients don't mind paying more

The costs to operate your business are going up so it’s inevitable that you will need to raise rates. Key is to ensure the increases you plan provide the profits your business needs to be sustainable. We’ve created a panel of pet business owners and industry experts that have successfully implemented large rate increases successfully or helped others to do so. This is a don’t miss opportunity to get your questions on raising rates and communicating them successfully to your clients answered.

Steps on how to work more on your business instead of just reacting to fires

Finding the time to consistently work on your business is a challenge for many entrepreneurs. Keeping your owner commitment a priority when fires erupt is even harder. Learn from our panel of pet business entrepreneurs their secrets to prioritizing working on their business and the success it brought to them.

And More...

  • Blue-9 Dog Demo to learn new activities you can implement in your center
  • Panel discussions- learn from other business owners about tried and true measures they have already implemented
  • Workshop time - so you will take home a plan for implementation of the best practices
  • Networking, networking, networking
  • Valuable time to talk to The Dog Gurus preferred vendors
  • And prizes, prizes and more prizes!

Featured Keynote Speaker

Andrea Hoffer has been in the business of hiring, leading and motivating people for over 25 years. She is currently the Founder and CEO of AHA! Recruiting Experts. The core purpose of AHA! is to give leaders their time and freedom back by helping them attract, engage, and retain team members who believe in and support their mission.

Andrea, a former spa owner where she managed 35 employees, knows first-hand the everyday challenges of motivating employees, exceeding customer expectations, and meeting business and revenue goals. She struggled with high turnover and a lack of good candidates. After some research and a lot of trial and error, she perfected a hiring process that gets results. Andrea is now using that experience and knowledge to help companies to Build their Dream Teams.

Her talks speak to business owners/CEO's and organization leaders. She will inspire you to take action with clear-cut action steps that have proven to get results.

Workshop Speakers

Robin Bennett is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, author, speaker, and expert on dogs. She founded one of the largest dog training companies in Virginia and has been using her expertise in “reading dogs” to teach families how to train their pets as well as helping others in the pet care industry keep dogs safe for over 20 years. Robin’s first book, All About Dog Daycare is the number one reference on opening a dog daycare. She is also Co-author of Off-Leash Dog Play… A Complete Guide to Safety and Fun, and an extensive staff training program called, Knowing Dogs, which are the leading staff training resources for dog daycare and boarding facilities. Robin is currently co-founder of The Dog Gurus, the nation’s premier resource for dog care professionals. Through The Dog Gurus she is now helping pet care professionals get their lives back by showing them how to create sustainable businesses with teams that truly know dogs.

Who Are The Dog Gurus?

Susan Briggs is a Certified Professional Animal Care Operator, author, speaker, and pet business expert. As co-founder of The Dog Gurus she brings over 18 years of experience in the pet industry with 12 years as co-owner and operator of a successful dog daycare, lodging, grooming and training business in Houston, Texas. In addition to being a co-author with Robin in publishing Off-Leash Dog Play and Knowing Dogs, Susan used her educational background in accounting and published Counting Noses: Accounting and Financial Management Guidelines for the Pet Services Industry. Susan enjoys making it easy for owners to understand the numbers side of their business so they can focus on care quality. In 2015 Susan co-founded the Professional Animal Care Certification Council whose mission is to provide independent testing and certification for pet care professionals. The program embraces Susan’s passion for providing quality care for animals.

Kari Campbell, CPACO

Dog Tired K9 Activity Center

 Kari Campbell, a Certified Professional Animal Care Operator, has over twenty years’ experience in the pet care industry. She is a founding member of the Normandy Project, and the Alaska League for Animal Welfare Standards, a past board member on the Anchorage Animal Care & Control Center Advisory Board and has volunteered with Friends of Pets as past president and board member. Her volunteer experience led her in 2005 to open Dog Tired Doggie Daycare in Anchorage, Alaska. Kari’s facility is a bright and vibrant place for pups to play, with the health, safety, and well-being of her guests as her top priority. Her passion is to provide the highest level of care for her clients through education, compassion, and communication. Dog Tired is dedicated to educating their staff and clients and have been long time members of the Dog Gurus, IBPSA, WIPIN, WPA, APDT, PCSA, and ABKA. Dog Tired is known for their innovated parent teacher organization and the events they host both for their clients and their community. She currently serves on the Professional Animal Care Certification Council Board of Directors. Kari was born in Santiago, Chile. Her unique upbringing is matched by her unique professional experience as an accomplished opera singer, with an educational background in vocal performance. Having toured through Japan, Europe, and the United States, she has performed with several opera companies and orchestras. Although her education and singing experiences have been very rewarding, her lifelong dream has been to work with animals. She shares her life with Newton, a French Bulldog.

Kendal Duncan, CPACP

Canine Cabana

Kendall Duncan is a Certified Professional Animal Care Provider and owner of Canine Cabana in Tampa Florida.  Kendall’s career in animal care started in 1995 in the zoological department at Busch Gardens. She cared for and trained several large exotic species such as black rhinos, lions, hyenas, hippos, tigers, great apes, and dolphins. Kendall went back to the animal that started her passion, dogs! Co-founding Canine Cabana with her best friend and business partner Angie Pickren, they opened their doors in 2008. Canine Cabana is a community leader in dog care and behavior. Canine Cabana’s mission is to improve the quality of life for dogs, and the owners who love them.  Kendall’s other passion is her fun-loving family, Cabana team, and community. She loves to help others connect through networking, public speaking, and continuing education.

Courtney Emken

DogBoy's Dog Ranch

Courtney Emken and her husband Bart opened DogBoy’s Dog Ranch in 1995. The original dog ranch, DogBoy’s was the first to offer group play in Texas, the first pet care facility to commit to science-based positive reinforcement training, and the first to require dogs be spayed or neutered for lodging or daycare. The child of entrepreneurs and artists, Courtney used her business degree, creativity and drive to carry DogBoy’s from a tiny mom & pop biz to an internationally known and award-winning pet care facility, grossing over $1.5M a year. Courtney’s passion for small business and growing entrepreneurs carries down to her employees, who are taught open book management so they understand how businesses work, and can go on to chart their own paths in the dog world. When not working as CEO of DogBoy’s, Courtney loves knitting, traveling and sharing her business acumen serving on nonprofit boards and committees.

Jamie Popper, KPA-CPT

Blue-9 Pet Products

Jamie Popper, KPA-CTP, has been working as a professional within the pet training industry since 2011. She earned a degree in exceptional student education with a focus on behavior from the University of Central Florida. Through her work with students in the public school system she learned how to combine her passion for learning theory and curriculum development to working with humans and their dogs.  She’s since graduated from the Karen Pryor Academy as a Certified Training Partner and acquired the Certified Canine Fitness Trainer credential through the University of Tennessee. Since 2015 Jamie has dedicated herself fulltime to Blue-9 Pet Products where she is involved with the development and overall growth of the company. She competes in multiple sports with her dogs including competitive obedience, disc, and rally.  She enjoys testing her training methods in these rigorous competition sports. Jamie has a strong enthusiasm for teaching and presenting to the general public.

Other Panelists and Workshop Facilitators

Charlotte Biggs, CPACO

The Dog Gurus

Cindie Carter

Walks and Wags

Ed Kaczmarek

Urban Pooch

Shawnte Marquez

Joyful Paws

Anna Torre-Radle, CPACO

Fieldstone Animal Inn

Laurie Ruttenberg

Lucky Dog Resort

Location and Event Information

Jacksonville River City Hotel

245 Water Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202

To make a reservation call 904-355-6664

The Dog Gurus 2022 Workshop will be held at the Jacksonville River City Hotel. Reserve your room by March 12, 2022 to get special room rate (unless they sell out by then!!!)

Plan to arrive on Tuesday, April 5 (if you are a VIP plan to attend the VIP reception that evening starting at 6:30 pm).  

The Workshop will begin at 8:00am on Wednesday, April 6. We will end at 3:30pm on Thursday, April 7. You'll want to stay till the end!!!

To make a reservation call the hotel directly at 904-355-6664.

Special Thanks to Our Workshop Sponsors and Supporters


Diamond Sponsor and Welcome Cocktail Reception Sponsor which is held on Wed, April 6, 2022 for all attendees (6:30 to 8:00p.m)





Become a Sponsor or Supporter

The Dog Gurus Workshop sponsorships offer a valuable opportunity to showcase your brand and gain targeted exposure to hundreds of industry experts, thought leaders, trailblazing entrepreneurs, and potential customers. However, it's not for everyone! Sponsorships are generally limted to those companies with excellent reputations and high quality services and products. Sponsorships must be approved by The Dog Gurus. 

Download Sponsorship Package

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