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Meet Marilyn Kastner and Bonny Butler of Dogs Etc in Newhall

Today we’d like to introduce you to Marilyn Kastner and Bonny Butler.

Marilyn, Bonny – please share your story with us.
Opening day was October 17,1987.

Dogs Etc. started as a small local grooming shop and over the years became one of the best and busiest Dog Grooming shops in all of Santa Clarita Valley. The success has been due to some of the hardest working and most dedicated loyal employee friends ever. Our community has entrusted us to be their pets advocates and we thank them all for that. In all these years and within these 4 walls, we have learned many lessons about how to care for these precious pets.

After 29 years Bonny Butler sold the business to Marilyn Kastner who is now Dogs Etc.’s proud new owner and has been updating the shop with a new computer system. Marilyn is continuing in the tradition of holding the same high level of service as Bonny Butler, her predecessor. Bonny still works part-time at Dogs Etc and on her off days she works on her watercolor painting which is her other passion in life and is very talented at it as well.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Since opening the doors of Dogs Etc. in October of 1987, there certainly have been some struggles along the way. The first few years were wonderful in that business was good and growing. This is a family oriented community and a good grooming shop was sorely needed. And then in the 1990’s the Box Superstores were moving in. PetSmart and Petco were going to be Dogs Etc.’s competition and we were quite unsure of our future. It is well known that these superstores have put many a mom and pop shops out of business. But because of Dogs Etc.’s devotion and integrity to our clients and the personal and professional attention that has always been our philosophy, Dogs Etc. has survived and surpassed all doubts!

Along with the never-ending price increases in towel service, supplies and advertising over the last 29 years, we are always challenged with new and creative ways to compete in this now very popular arena. Dogs Etc. has managed to stay strong and proud and there are no obstacles that we don’t meet head on!

So, let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Dogs Etc story. Tell us more about the business.
This business was established by Bonny Butler a graduate of The New York School of Dog Grooming in 1987. With the background of learning grooming from the best school in the country, she had a desire to share her talent with the pet owners of Santa Clarita Valley. Now along with 6 other uber talented pet groomers of Dogs Etc. Bonny and Marilyn are very proud to share their vision of making all the pets feel, look and smell their best!

Every interaction the Groomers have with every client is an energy exchange. They make sure that these exchanges lighten and brighten the owners and pet’s day. They are happy to see them walk thru the doors and show it! They are grateful for the business and their trust.

The services include special baths with a variety of shampoos ranging from, oatmeal, hypo allergenic, filthy animal, medicated, aloe, blueing and of course blueberry facials. The groomers do all styles and types of haircuts depending on the owners wishes. Hand scissoring is their specialty and all dogs leave smelling of one of the many wonderful colognes on hand. Nails are cut and filed and ears are cleaned. Anal gland expression and teeth brushing is also offered as well as a monthly visit by the Professional Doggie Dentist.

Prices vary depending on the breed and haircut.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I don’t think luck has had anything to do with the success of this business. Honestly, hard work, team work, being devoted to being the best one could be, finding solutions to problems, having a great staff and wonderful clients, being dedicated to learning the craft, loving animals and providing leadership and guidance has ensured Dogs Etc.’s success. There have been some incredible life lessons and knee deep challenges but being an effective leader to a small group of people that are exceptional at their trade does not require LUCK. Customer relations, service, managing the business and creating a welcoming space for the employees and clientele requires no LUCK. Dogs Etc. adapts and ventures through each phase of its life and will embrace the next 29 years with humor, thoughtfulness and integrity.

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Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. Kathy Gustin

    June 28, 2017 at 19:05

    Miss you all. Bonny and Brittney, always the BEST!!!

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