Summary

Active Dog is on a mission to make sure dogs are getting plenty of exercise and living their best lives. What started as a hobby for Active Dog owner, Eric Bleile, quickly became a thriving niche business within the pet care industry. The company grew rapidly, but so did the amount of time spent on administrative tasks like scheduling and invoicing. Eric wanted to spend more time with his team out hiking in nature and less time working on the computer.

Here's how Time To Pet helped Eric and Active Dog run more efficiently and change how they ran their business.

The Active Dog Story

The story starts in 2011 with Eric having just left a big corporate job, living in southern Connecticut where he didn't know many people. While in the process of job hunting and working on a graduate degree, Eric would take his beloved dog, Tobias, on daily hikes. Eric and Tobias started seeing a lot of the same dogs and pet parents on the trails. Eventually, some of the outdoors-loving pet parents that weren't able to hike every day asked Eric if he would be willing to take their dogs along when he went out. These would become Active Dog's first clients. Eric put up an ad offering his dog hiking services and soon realized that there was definitely demand from pet parents for what he was offering. So, he bought a big van and started picking up pups and taking them on hikes.

Challenge

Not long after starting Active Dog, Eric realized that it was a viable business with lots of growth potential. With a background in business and finance, Eric had no problem manually handling all the administrative tasks that came with running the day-to-day operations of Active Dog. He would keep everything compiled in Excel spreadsheets and handle customer communications, scheduling, and invoicing all by himself. As an admitted perfectionist, Eric liked being in control of everything. He considered several software solutions early on but didn't like the idea of not having his hands on every facet of his business.

It wasn't too long before the administrative work became excessively time-consuming. With more clients and more team members, there came more spreadsheets and more invoices. Eric would enter every event into his Excel spreadsheet, then make each invoice individually, and charge each invoice separately in Stripe. After spending seven and half years doing everything himself through spreadsheets and text messages, Eric realized he was spending over fifteen hours a month just on invoices, and many, many more hours than that on customer communications and scheduling. It was time for a change.

Solution

Eric realized that spending the majority of his time on administrative tasks was neither efficient nor enjoyable. He started researching pet care software solutions. With the unique dog hiking business model he had, Eric wasn't sure that there was a pet sitting or dog walking software that would work for Active Dog. He actually called a facility software company first. After explaining his unique business, the company realized they wouldn't be a good fit but recommended Time To Pet. Eric was a bit skeptical at first but decided to give Time To Pet a try. He went through the onboarding process and read all of the Time To Pet tutorial materials. Then came the part Eric had been most reluctant to accept, giving up control of his Excel spreadsheets and letting Time To Pet handle the busywork of invoicing, scheduling, and credit card processing.

After a short transition period, Eric had Active Dog, along with his managers and staff, fully running everything through Time To Pet. It was somewhat astonishing to Eric just how seamless he was able to run his business. The clients loved the App, the staff loved how easy it was to schedule hikes, and Eric definitely loved the time he was saving. He also realized fewer mistakes were being made because every event was tracked and recorded in detail so that both Active Dog and its clients could see everything with complete transparency. Eric also now had access to many detailed reports that he couldn't track before using Time To Pet.

So was it worth it?

Results

The Time To Pet software has made running our business 5 to 10 times more efficient. We save around 100 hours a month now with the system's automated scheduling, invoicing, and credit card processing. Our clients are also enjoying the new software and have found it very user-friendly. Five stars.
Eric Bleile, owner of Active Dog

Having used Time To Pet for two years now, Eric can confidently say that the software has completely changed how he runs Active Dog. Besides offering his clients a better experience with the Client App and various automated actions, the amount of time he has saved on the backend work is absolutely astounding. Eric has saved fifteen hours a month just on invoicing. The time dedicated to scheduling and sending scheduling-related messages to clients has decreased by a factor of twenty since Active Dog started using Time To Pet. All told, Eric estimates that Time To Pet saves his business aroundĀ one hundred hoursĀ a month in tasks that are now automated!

Active Dog clients love receiving customized messages before every hike and seeing the report card and pictures post-hike. The Time To Pet Client App makes it incredibly easy for Active Dog clients to schedule events and communicate with Eric and his team. The staff also loves using Time To Pet because they always have access to their schedules and client information. As a bonus, the team at Active Dog has seen their tips improve now that clients have the option to tip on every payment right in the App.

Time To Pet software allows our company to run more efficiently than it ever has before. TTP frees up hours upon hours of scheduling and invoicing through its automation. If you have a dog walking, hiking, or sitting company of any size, I would highly recommend giving TTP a try.
Eric Bleile, owner of Active Dog

Active Dog clients love receiving customized messages before every hike and seeing the report card and pictures post-hike. The Time To Pet Client App makes it incredibly easy for Active Dog clients to schedule events and communicate with Eric and his team. The staff also loves using Time To Pet because they always have access to their schedules and client information. As a bonus, the team at Active Dog has seen their tips improve now that clients have the option to tip on every payment right in the App.

What's Ahead?

Eric sees a bright future for Active Dog and the pet care industry. He plans to continue growing his business and adding new offerings for his clients. In a post-pandemic world, Eric anticipates ramping up his boarding services, expanding services to include more training, and hiring more employees. He is also thinking about starting a dedicated boarding facility. In the last year, Eric has seen many people moving from large cities and adopting new pets in his area. Active Dog hopes to provide as many of them as possible with a premium pet care experience. And with Time To Pet taking the busywork of invoicing and scheduling off his plate, Eric is confident that he can handle all the new business.

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