Editor’s note: This month’s Business Beacon is a spotlight on Paw and Posy, a full-service pet care company that coordinates with your wedding day. Owner Madison Seiffert talks to us about growing up with dogs, her career in the event industry and how she can help incorporate your pup into your celebrations.
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1. How did you get the idea or concept for your business?
MS: My idea originated from working in the wedding industry for years. On so many occasions I had couples desperately wish to involve their dogs in their celebration, but the logistics were too difficult and they would be forced to abandon that dream. Then, occasionally you had the couples who brought their animals but didn’t arrange for proper care and it was a hot mess. I thought to myself, “There has to be a solution for this recurring issue!”
2. Let’s discuss numbers: What year did you open? How many locations do you have? How many people do you employ?
MS: I officially opened in December 2022. I am a one-woman team with a goal to add on employees by next year.
3. What do you sell or what service do you provide? What’s your best seller?
MS: Paw and Posy provides wedding day pet care. Our service is for the brides and grooms who are having weddings and want their dogs in photos, included in the ceremony, to make an appearance during cocktail hour and then be safely taken back home. Our service caters to both local and tourist couples having destination weddings down here on the Emerald Coast. There are a lot of moving parts on wedding days and asking one of your family members or friends to dogsit usually is a major buzzkill … because now they have a big responsibility and will, at some point, have to leave the party to take the dog back home. We absorb that responsibility so no bridesmaid or second cousin has to! We also assist the photographer and cinematography teams by helping the pups with posing, grasping their attention with squeaky toys, offering treats and, of course, lots of scratches! This helps capture those adorable frame-worthy photos that couples cherish for a lifetime. We also work beyond wedding days. We can assist families in photoshoots where they want to include their dogs. Recently, we worked with a family during a newborn photo session and the photos came out so sweet.
4. What’s unique about what you do or offer?
MS: What’s unique to Paw and Posy is the fact that we’re not just dog walkers … we’re event industry professionals. My past professional career was as an event planner and venue manager. I’ve seen and done it all on wedding days and that gives me an advantage. My company may be in its first year but that does not mean I’m “new” to this industry. I have great relationships within the vendor world and I understand the flow of the wedding day timeline. I can walk your dog and bustle your wedding dress too if need be! I also am a dog person to my core. I didn’t have sisters growing up; I had dogs. I get the indescribable bond that you have with your pup. You don’t have to explain and you’re not ridiculous for wanting them there! I wish more than anything my dog was able to be at our wedding. Part of the fact she wasn’t, is what drove me to look deeper into this business.
5. How would you describe your business to a potential customer?
MS: I would say we are a team of event professionals/animal lovers who assist couples in involving their pups in their wedding festivities. We work with your wedding planner, photographers, and venue manager to create a game plan and escort your pups from location to location, assist when needed, and safely return them to their final destination. Once there. we can feed them dinner, take them on an evening walk and tuck them into bed. All pets receive a complimentary toy and treat from us!
6. What do you love most about your line of work?
MS: Being a part of someone’s wedding day is something I take great honor in. If I’m able to assist in the joy of that celebration my heart is full. Also who doesn’t want to be surrounded by dogs and beautiful things?
7. What sorts of trends are you seeing in your industry?
MS: That’s such a funny question because the latest wedding day “trend” is to not have traditional bridesmaids and groomsmen. Couples are getting married later in life and that often means they’re skipping a lot of traditions that our parents and grandparents had. A big one is wedding parties; instead, dogs are often filling those roles as “flower pup,” “best boy” and “pup of honor,” which, of course, we love to see!
8. Tell me in just a sentence or two what you feel sets you apart from your competitors.
MS: Our professionalism and knowledge of the event industry set us apart. You can find plenty of dog walkers and pet sitters on Facebook and on pet care apps, but we’re so much more than that.
9. Who or what inspires you? This could be a family member or celebrity, a particular quote or even a book/movie/podcast. The sky’s the limit!
MS: I’m inspired by women. Beyoncé said it best when she sang, “We’re strong enough to bear the children, then get back to business.” Just teasing, but seriously, there are big-shot women who I idolize such as Sarah Blakely, Reese Witherspoon, and Amal Clooney. I’m also inspired by the single mom on my street raising a family. I’m inspired by the woman who left a bad relationship and decided to follow her dream. Seeing strong women create lives that they want gives me the energy to do the same.
10. What’s the best thing about being a part of the Emerald Coast, personally and/or professionally?
MS: The Emerald Coast is so special. I moved here when I was a sophomore in high school and I spend some years in southwest Florida but decided to come back because I missed it. Besides the gorgeous beaches, there’s a sense of community here that is hard to leave. I knew this area was about to explode in popularity so my husband and invested in a home in 2020 and we look forward to continuing our lives here.
11. Are you/your business involved in the community in any way? Volunteering or giving back? If so, how?
MS: We take a portion of each sale and make a donation to K9s for Warriors at the end of the year. K9s for Warriors is the nation’s largest provider of service animals for veterans. My family had a lot of service members so this is a cause close to my heart.
12. What does a typical day in your business look like? (Pretend it’s Monday (or Friday!) and take me through the highlights of your day.)
MS: If we’re working a wedding the day typically looks like this:
- 1 p.m. — Pick up the dog from the house/hotel and drive to the photo location.
- 2 p.m. — Take pup on a walk, hydrate, and treat time.
- 2:30 p.m. — Join the wedding couple for the first look and photos.
- 3 p.m. — Transport the dog to the ceremony location.
- 3:30 p.m. — Go on a second walk, more treats and scratches.
- 4 p.m. — Hand off the dog to a family member for the ceremony or walk them down the aisle myself.
- 4:30 p.m. — Assist photographers in family photos.
- 5 p.m. — Transport the pup back to its home/hotel room.
- 6 p.m. — Playtime, feed them dinner, final walk, tuck them into bed.
13. What’s your best “insider tip?” (This could be a community tip for vacationers or homeowners or even a tip for customers related to your business.)
MS: I always encourage couples who are getting married to hire a local wedding planner and trust their vendor recommendations. With the internet today, it’s very easy to be overwhelmed with options but this area is a close-knit community and we know what works and what doesn’t.
14. How do you recharge or relax when the day is done?
MS: I am an introvert so after my long day of work I enjoy my car ride home with Adele and Taylor Swift coming through my radio. If I have an off day, I enjoy playing tennis with my husband or taking my dog to the park.
15. Just the deets, please! Where are you located? Business hours? Social media profiles and/or website links we need to know about? (Please feel free to add social media handles or direct links!)
MS: Website: pawandposy.com
Facebook: Paw and Posy
16. One final question: If there was just one thing you wish the public knew about your business, what would it be?
MS: We make your dreams of including your pups in your celebration possible!