In case you haven’t noticed the brightly colored balloons or the newly painted building or the colorful new landscaping at 147 N. Larchmont, Tailwaggers is officially open-ish. “Ish” because it hasn’t fully stocked its retail store, and the doggie daycare won’t open until May, but owner Todd Warner is there every day now, along with his staff, welcoming dogs and their owners in to a look around and enjoy a treat.
We stopped by Thursday to chat with Warner about his plans to officially open the store in May with opening festivities and giveaways. Warner is a seasoned business owner, with two other shops, but he told us being on Larchmont has been a longtime dream ever since he lived in Brookside. He said he is thrilled to be in the neighborhood, and so thankful for the support he has received.
“Everyone has been so welcoming,” said Warner, who is pretty welcoming himself. He personally invites pets and their owners into the store with a large water bowl out front and an array of treats inside. Interestingly, the treats are all within reach of dogs who stop by and sniff but don’t take anything from the bins.
“Dogs know. They just sniff; they never take anything,” explained Warner. “I never have to worry about dogs shoplifting, and in the rare case when one picks up a chew, the owner usually happily pays for it.”
Warner is working out the kinks in operating what are essentially three businesses in the former Flywheel space. The daycare operation will open in May for dogs 35 pounds and smaller, and the grooming operation will open shortly thereafter. Once all that is underway, Warner hopes to start organizing events for The Tailwaggers Foundation, his animal welfare charity that raises funds for animal rescues to treat sick or injured animals.
Starting next weekend, on Sunday, April 15, Tailwaggers will be hosting cat and dog adoption event with LA Animal Rescue, a long time partner of Tailwaggers. Warner said he hopes to have an adoption event every weekend, if possible. On Sunday, May 16, Warner will partner with Muttineer Dog Training to conduct dog training classes. Both events are planned to be outside in the parking lot next to the store.
Tailwaggers has a loyalty program called “Tailwagger Pack” for members who join the “pack” (membership is free), which provides a 5 percent discount on anything in the store, alon with periodic discounts and specials on various items. There’s also a frequent food program where you can easily re-oder dog food, with free same-day delivery or order online with pick-up in the store. If you’re not sure what food is best for your dog, you can ask Amanda Knight, the store’s nutritional specialist, who can help you avoid food allergies for your pet.
Eventually, Warner said he plans to expand the store hours to 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily, but for now the hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Stop by and get a treat for your dog. You’re likely to meet Warner, who is there most days.
“It’s my life, it’s fantastic to be here,” said Warner.