Hey there! Sophie here. I’m stopping by today with an interview from Happy Dog Clothes Lancaster, PA. I must say, my human knows good looking dogs! Meet Vegas, a Boston terrier and model for Happy Dog Clothes, and her human Jennifer. You may recognize Vegas in the Valentine’s Day post here.
Sophie: How did you meet Vegas?
Jennifer: The story of how Vegas and I came to be is quite convoluted. I started my search for a dog in 2008, almost a year after my last dog (of 17 years) passed away. I started searching Petfinder and I found Vegas. It was basically a love at first sight type of story. I knew she was the dog for me.
I found out that Vegas was rescued from a puppy mill and had some issues. She was malnourished and dealing with a pretty severe prolapsed rectum. So while I didn’t intend to take on a dog with medical issues I did some research and thought about if I was ready to get a dog with known medical issues. Ultimately the answer was yes. No decisions on Vegas’ adoption were made until the rescue was sure that she would make it through the surgeries to correct the issue with the prolapse. When all was said and done, I was informed that I was NOT the chosen applicant to take Vegas. I was so distressed over the news, I was basically pouting for the next few days. Everyone around me was suggesting I move on and look for another dog. However, I was so convinced Vegas and I were meant to be, I said I wasn’t going to look for another dog until I knew she was home with her new family and there was absolutely no chance I could adopt her.
Needless to say my persistence paid off, the family that originally was going to take her couldn’t and so I was given the opportunity to adopt her. We ended up driving out to Ohio from Pennsylvania to pick her up the weekend I found out we could take her. So the happy ending to Vegas’ story is that she is completely healthy and spoiled. Now she is the face of Happy Dog Clothes, which is named after her because we called her the “happy dog” all the time. I have come to the conclusion that we were fated to be together.
Sophie: Does Vegas have any quirks?
Jennifer: She has a lot of quirks. She hates it when you blow in her face or make fart sounds with your mouth. She also sleeps with a big grin on her face and likes to rub up against your legs like a cat.
Jennifer: Vegas was the catalyst for my business. Many Boston terrier owners will be familiar with this story, but as Vegas got bigger I found it more difficult to find coats for her. Bostons have big chests and many dog clothes don’t accommodate their unique size. Clothes for Bostons are also a necessity, these dogs don’t have the insulating layer of fur that most dogs have and here in the Northeast Vegas has to have a coat in the colder months. I was getting so frustrated with the task of finding her a coat they either didn’t fit, they were ugly or not warm enough and sometimes it was all of the above. Since I had some experience with sewing I figured I would make a fitting coat for Vegas that was warm and cute.
I posted a picture of my coat on the Facebook page of the Northeast Boston Terrier rescue and got a lot of positive feedback. So it was encouragement enough for me to give it a try selling my clothes. I felt that if I had these issues there were certainly other dog owners who had the same issues. I have already done some custom coats for Dachshunds who definitely have a unique shape.
Sophie: What is the best seller item in your shop?
Jennifer: Hands down the best sellers in my shop are the holiday bandanas and bow ties. So far I have tried to make bandanas and bow ties for all the holidays. I am getting ready to start working on patriotic bandanas and bow ties for the summer holidays.
I think these are so popular because many of my customers either just like to share the holidays with their pets or their pets are going to events during the holidays. For example, I had several customers who were taking their dogs to St. Patty’s Day parades and for some their dogs were going to be in the parades.
Sophie: Where can we find Happy Dog Clothes?
Jennifer: You can find Happy Dog Clothes at my Etsy store www.happydogclothes.etsy.com, and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HappyDogClothes. If you want to know more about Vegas you can read her blog at www.ourdogvegas.com.