07 Jan 5-star stay for dogs and cats
5-star stay for dogs and cats
Caroline Laleta Ballini
7 January 2019
When it comes to entrusting our pets to others, health, hygiene, safety, well-being and the environment are all essential elements because leaving a third party with the responsibility of looking after one’s favorite dog or cat demands a colossal sacrifice and means one needs to feel particularly confident about it.
When you enter the PIPC Grooming & Spa Hotel, the warm and comfortable atmosphere of the waiting room does not necessarily invoke the idea one would have of a boarding house for dogs and cats. The eye scans the room, stopping on the extremely tasteful décor, the cleanliness, the choice of very comfortable furniture, the calming and relaxing colors chosen, and the pretty French tapestries of dogs adorning the walls. Part of the anxiety of parting with one’s pet has already dissipated.
The owner, Napattorn Petchote (Khun Aom), welcomes us warmly and immediately inspires confidence. Listening to his story, we sense someone who is passionate about animals and who, together with the veterinarian Jutiwat Danworanun (Dr. Aeh), is able to instill this same love of animals in his staff, The Angel Team. Dressed in their pink outfits and boots, they provide the grooming and spa treatments and manage the hotel with passion, providing the greatest welfare to the animals and peace-of-mind to their masters.
As Khun Aom explains to us, the essential prerequisite, regardless of their expertise, is that they love animals. Since the opening of the establishment nine months ago, they do their work conscientiously and with devotion. No recalcitrant animal can resist them. Our pets have a sixth sense and know how to recognize the depth of a human being’s feelings. It is just enough to look at this Persian cat, who is usually rather skittish (according to its masters), being dried, brushed and groomed all over, to question the aggressive nature of the animal. On the contrary, it seems serene, allowing itself to be manipulated in every way by the team of Angels. Speaking personally, giving a shower to my cat is an impossibility. Despite its calm nature, it reveals its fighting spirit during this challenging experience.
From the outset, watching this scene through the bay window soothes and provides confidence in the future. The Angels are experts. Regardless of the race of your companion, they will bathe, brush, disentangle, style, clean the nails, epilate the ears, brush the teeth, shear and cut the hair and massage your dogs and cats.
How did you come up with the idea of opening a hotel for dogs and cats?
We started the veterinary hospital seven years ago with Dr. Aeh. But the customers were asking for a hotel for dogs and cats as there were none in the area. The only establishment in Koh Sire seemed too far away. So we opened a small unit to receive the animals and offer them grooming, but the quality was not sufficient.
Thanks to our strong professional background, Dr. Aeh, Miss Pornpan Kanokkulchai (Khun O) and myself decided last year to construct this new building, a living space dedicated to animals with a high level of service, high-quality equipment, quality products based on European standards and qualified and well-trained staff, guaranteeing the quality of the services offered.
Who trained the staff and how did the first grooming services begin?
Dr. Aeh and myself, because most of the time, the grooming was due to dermatological problems. When the vet discovers that a dog or a cat has skin problems, the first thing to do, independently of any medication, is to clean the animal with special shampoos, antibiotic shampoos for treating the illness. And it isn’t simple because sometimes three different ones are required. It isn’t easy for our customers to do this themselves.
Since we moved to the new building, we have been welcoming more and more customers.
Since then, more than 60% of the grooming has not involved any link with skin problems. We use warm water for the animals because cats hate cold water. You know, a lot of institutions or hospitals give tranquilizers to your animals or put them to sleep so that they are easier to groom, but our priority here is the health of your animal. This is why our staff are trained by the doctor because we need to know the psychology of the animal. Here, we pamper them!
We also offer a spa with a hydrotherapy tub from the United States, allowing us to provide dogs with shampooing and relaxing massage treatments. They love it.
Our prices range between 250 Baht for a small dog such as a Chihuahua or a Pomeranian, 350 Baht for a 30kg Labrador, and 400-500 Baht for a large dog with long hair weighing up to 40kg. Our prices are therefore very affordable and our Thai clientele has steadily increased since the opening.
During my last visit to the hotel, a dozen cats occupied the section reserved for them and looked perfectly happy. The cheerful colors, the ambient odor and the graffiti adorning the main wall of the room encourage play and well-being. There is no doubt that the rooms have nothing of the wire cage about them, but are revealed to be hotel rooms for cats. The VIP rooms allow two cats of the same family to be kept together.
Tell me about the hotel, because leaving my dog or my cat for several days is a decision that is hard to make.
The cats have the benefit of 34 rooms, including five VIP rooms on three levels, which have views of the forest and the road, with small nooks in which to climb, jump or hide.
For the dogs, the range is large: small, medium, large, extra large. But less than 5% of our customers choose the smallest rooms because the large ones offer air conditioning, television and cameras connected to an app that allows you to track your pet’s movements on your smartphone.
A hatch leading to a small personal yard allows the animal to go out as it sees fit throughout the day and we offer the dogs two daily half-hour walks in the garden.
The menus are the responsibility of the owner, who provides the food or snacks that the dogs prefer. Some dogs require special diet or one rich in protein. The hotel has a fully equipped kitchen in which vegetables can be boiled or the dishes warmed up and certain menus prepared as an option.
How do you ensure hygienic conditions if some dogs have ticks or diseases?
PIPC is visited once a month by a pest control company to eradicate ticks and other insects that could affect the hygiene of the establishment.
Naturally, in order to preserve the hygiene and the health of the residents, a health record is required when the animal checks in and its vaccination must be up to date. No sick animal can be admitted to the hotel. The animal’s owner undertakes to report any health problems and medical history likely to affect the behavior of the animal during its stay. On arrival, the animals must be free of fleas, ticks or other unwanted pests. It’s a good idea to take advantage of its stay and your absence to arrange a visit to the vet and a grooming treatment.
So if it is impossible for you to take your animal with you on a trip, you can in total trust leave in the care of the Angels. It will be perfectly treated and pampered during your absence!
PIPC Phuket International Petcare Center
185/11 Srisoonthorn Rd., Thalang, Phuket +66 (0)76 620 136