Following a trip with my father to South Africa, where I got to spend days outside with animals, I decided I wanted to pursue a childhood dream of working with animals, and dogs just called out to me.
How it all started
My first dog, Ezri (female Canadian Basset Hound who flew back with us to the UK from there - she'll be 9 this summer) was my initial inspiration as I fell in love with training sessions with her.
My background is in web / digital marketing but for the past 5 years, I've been running my dog businesses (with a couple more years assisting in another business beforehand).
I've been running my in-person dog training for 5 years but Barket Place only launched in January this year! I'm lucky to have a very tech-savvy partner, Jon, who helps out with some of the website backend. My friend, Adam, is my cameraman. My best friend Sarah is also involved with SEO / Adwords advice.
And then there are the dogs... Ezri, Chester, Colin, Boris, Scarlet, Stanley, Dexter are just a few who have featured in the videos so far!
Alongside my new venture, Barket Place, I run my in-person dog training at Ruff Hounds and online dog shop at Ruff Shop.
What do you offer at Barket Place?
My in-person puppy classes were regularly sold out weeks in advance, with other local trainers on my recommendation list in the same situation. To ensure people were getting the right sort of training for their puppies, I wanted to offer my services to more people. Training your puppy via online classes also allows flexibility if you have a hectic work schedule or young children to care for. I'm soon to be launching my recall course as that's the training issue I get asked about the most.
“The constant challenge of creatively inspiring people to spend more time with their dogs, training them positively is the best thing about my business.”
What challenges do you face?
As online training for dogs is quite a new area, one challenge has been letting new puppy owners know that it's an option available to them. People look for traditional classes and feel the need to socialise their dog. But the best type of socialisation comes from calm introductions to new people / dogs / experiences, which sometimes classes don't allow. Most important relationship in a puppy's life is that with their family and online training allows family members to focus on that in the comfort of their home.
And what does Caroline love the most about what she does?
"The amazing puppy parents. They do all the hard work! I just offer support and advice, but they are nurturing their puppies into amazing adult dogs."