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Exploring Life & Business with Regina Richardson of Furry Ventures Pet Care

Today we’d like to introduce you to Regina Richardson.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I grew up in a small town right outside of New York City. My love for animals started at a very young age, bringing home stray animals and begging my mother to keep them. She usually said no, but I kept trying all the time. After I graduated from college, I moved to Tampa to pursue a career in Public Relations. I finally got to adopt a dog of my own from a local shelter and his love reinforced my desire to work with animals. After I got married, I started a Wedding Pet Care Company when I saw that there wasn’t much help with including your pets in your wedding. I always dreamed of having my dogs at my wedding but didn’t want to put the responsibility on my friends or family. I wanted them to enjoy the day with me and not have to worry about leaving my wedding to take care of my dogs. So, I quit my day job and started Furry Ventures Pet Care to help other couples’ dreams come true!

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Like most companies, it hasn’t always been a smooth road. What we struggled with the most was educating vendors and couples about our service. Most people don’t know a service like this is out there and that it is possible to include your dog in your wedding without it being stressful. So, after a few years, more and more people are now learning about this niche concept.

We’ve been impressed with Furry Ventures Pet Care, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Furry Ventures Pet Care is a Wedding Day Pet Care company. We help couples that want to include their pets in their weddings but don’t know-how. We handle everything pet-related, from providing couples with a licensed dog handler, round trip pet transportation, and coordinating with all their vendors before and during the wedding. We also assist with the ceremony and pictures, making sure their dog is always looking at the camera. Our number one goal is to make sure your dog is safe and is having the best day ever! It is possible to include your dog in your wedding, and we make sure it’s a stress-free experience for you AND your dog!

Our attention to detail and quality of service is what sets us apart from others in the pet care industry. Seeing all of the happy brides and grooms is what we’re most proud of. The joy of making someone else happy is one of the most innately rewarding experiences we can have as humans, I think. We’ve also been recognized as one of the best pet sitters in Tampa by Creative Loafing’s Best Of The Bay two years in a row. Just being nominated as one of the best in your field is incredible, but to be awarded twice in our first two years as a business is honestly not something we ever imagined would happen.

We’re always looking for the lessons that can be learned in any situation, including tragic ones like the Covid-19 crisis. Are there any lessons you’ve learned that you can share?
Wash your hand a lot! Hahaha. The pandemic has definitely been a difficult time for everyone. With postponements and cancellations, there have been challenges we never really anticipated. Luckily we’ve developed great relationships with our clients and venues, so we’ve been able to adjust and adapt to reschedule every wedding to ensure all of our brides and grooms have the best day ever.

The biggest positive that came out of the pandemic for us was the opportunity to really network and grow our relationships with other businesses in the wedding industry. A lot of weddings were postponed and rescheduled. So when you suddenly have an entire industry with an open schedule and plenty of time on their hands, you sort of have to get creative with how you move forward, especially with content. We worked with a lot of venues, photographers, florists, and other sectors in the industry to throw styled wedding shoots. We started a program called Finding FURever, where we partnered with local rescues, like The PIBA Foundation and the Southern States Bully Rescue, to bring their adoptable pets to these shoots. This not only helps to promote pet adoption but also gives the rescue updated professional photos of their pets to us. Given everything going on in the world, it was so encouraging seeing everyone work to get through it together.

Contact Info:

Image Credits
The Dashing Ginger
Landrum Photography
Madisun Paige Photography
Jennifer Nicole Photo and Films
Wild Love Photo
Alexis Kline Photography

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