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Alliance SBDC News


Kira Thompson connected with the Small Business Development Center when the center provided services at Illinois Valley Community College over five years ago. Thompson attended classes on business development while qualifying as a veterinarian technician. While living in Princeton, Henderson gained a sterling reputation as a provider of in-home pet care and dog walking. Her customers wanted more services. “When I decided to create a doggy day care, I knew I needed help with insurance and creating a limited liability company.” Working with Amy Lambert, Executive Director of the SBDC at the Starved Rock Country Alliance, the two worked to establish a solid base and value proposition for Doggonits, a facility located near Bureau Valley Veterinary Service in Princeton, Illinois.

In Fall of 2017, she opened the doors of Doggonits. Realizing that dog parents needed more than a safe place for their pets during the workday, Thompson began expanding services. She added programs, including Saturday Puppy Recess, to the schedule. "A puppy builds confidence while interacting with other puppies and people,” explained Thompson. Since dogs already feel safe at Doggonits, Thompson teamed with an animal shelter to provide low-cost vaccinations, tests, and treatments at the place where they love to visit.

It’s not all fun and games at Doggonits, however. Thompson began work this year to offer obedience training in 2022. Polling the Doggonits community, Thompson decided to offer a complete curriculum, including puppy socialization, standard obedience, and advanced obedience


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