Woof Gang Bakery & Grooming in Biltmore Park Town Square is filled with a wide selection of goods for dogs from canine treats and pet food to collars, toys and a host of other pet-related products. The shop also has a full grooming service that includes baths, brush outs, nail clipping, trims and haircuts for all breeds of canines from diminutive Shih Tzus to large Bernese mountain dogs and Great Pyrenees.
On a recent Monday morning, owners were bringing their furry friends in for appointments while others were picking up their freshly groomed companions.
“We get lots of doodles,” says Woof Gang Bakery owner Ann Marie Sindt, speaking of the various breeds that come through the door.
The groomers at Woof Gang Bakery typically work on about 18 dogs a day, Sindt says.
Since buying the business two and a half years ago, Sindt and her husband have expanded the hours of the grooming service, which now operates on a daily basis.
“We re-did the whole store,” she adds.
Along with grooming, the bulk of the business is in selling dog treats, Sindt says.
“Pupcakes” created with natural ingredients are the most popular item, along with birthday cakes for dogs, she notes. Frosted cookies and Chicken Chips are also among popular treats.
“The industry is changing so much that Sindt says she constantly keeps an eye on what customers are looking for.
“It’s all a process,” she says. “I don’t feel like I can sit back for even a week and not change something.”
Focusing on natural products, Sindt selects premium brands of pet foods such as Orijen, Acana, Pure Vita, NutriSource and Tucker’s frozen raw food for the store.
“We love them and we want them to be healthy,” Sindt says of the choices of dog foods.
While some dog owners may have reservations about raw foods, it’s a product that she and her staff frequently suggest.
“Raw food can definitely help,” Sindt says, even though there is a stigma associated with it. “It’s all an education,” she said.
The brand of raw frozen food sold at Woof Gang Bakery is pre-packaged and formulated especially for dogs.
Natural options for chew toys also are available at the shop. In addition to more traditional items, Woof Gang Bakery carries products such dried chicken feet, which are on display in a bowl.
“It’s important to remind them they’re animals,” she says.
Dogs that come in for grooming, however, get a salon treatment that suggests an elevated level of living.
“The groomers are really great,” Sindt says. “It’s like being a hair dresser.”
Although some dogs come in for a quick hair cut or a trim, others stay for several hours while getting a bath, full styling and blow dry.
Although some dogs may be apprehensive, the groomers know how to calm them down, Sindt says. And with many repeat clients, the dogs and groomers get to know each other over time.
Some dogs really seem to enjoy aspects of grooming such as the forced air dryers—aiming their heads toward them as they get dry, Sindt says with a smile.
Sindt is a true dog lover who has five canines in her home. She also offers grooming services to shelter dogs that are up for adoption.
“We work with rescue animals,” she says. “You have to do that to keep yourself real.”
Recently a rescued Shih Tzu with a badly matted coat came in for grooming and was soon adopted after its transformation, Sindt says.
Sindt and her husband decided to settle in Asheville after living in Florida and other places for many years. And soon after the move, they bought Woof Gang Bakery, an independently owned and operated franchise.
Even though the shop is a franchise, when people shop locally, they make a contribution to the community, Sindt says.
Woof Gang Bakery is at 33 Town Square Blvd. in Biltmore Park Town Square. For more information, call 828-650-9950.