Dream Big — Jensen Kennels

Blog Jensen Kennels July 2023

Kasey Jensen, owner of Jensen Kennels, turned her passion for pups into a business.

Kasey Jensen, owner of Jensen Kennels in Vermillion, South Dakota. Kasey, a fresh college graduate, opened Jensen Kennels in May 2023 making Jensen Kennels the newest business interviewed for Bank Midwest’s Dream Big article series.

Like many business owners, Kasey turned her passion into a company. Her passion is her love of dogs. Not only has she been working with dogs her whole life, but she also has three of her own.

“The idea for Jensen Kennels started four years ago while I was attending college,” Kasey said.

A graduate of the University of South Dakota with a degree in Sports Marketing, Kasey started by watching dogs in her home. “At one time, I had 15 dogs, including my own, Baker, Finn, and Summit,” Kasey said. “I began to think the Vermillion area would benefit from both doggy daycare and boarding services. The nearest other facilities are over 30 miles away.”

From dream to reality

Once Kasey decided to move forward with her business idea, she had another decision to make: build a new facility or buy an existing building. After careful consideration by Kasey and her team, she made the decision to build but changed plans when a new opportunity arose.

“Two years ago, we purchased two lots with plans to build an 8,000 square foot facility,” said Kasey. “Then this building became available, and since its 35,000 feet, the opportunities to make it work now and into the future are almost endless.” Kasey purchased an existing facility on E. Cherry Street and began making improvements.

The pack is growing

Jensen Kennels already employs 12 employees, and they grew their canine fan base from 20 to 175 in a very short period.

“I’m happy with the progress we’ve made,” said Kasey. “We started with 10 to 15 dogs per day. Since we have such a large facility, we comfortably have room for 60 dogs for daycare and 40 for overnight. Our dog to handler ratio is 15:1.”

“The dogs are happy to be here,” said Kasey. “If they’re comfortable and enjoy their stay, it’s both peace of mind for their owners, and they’ll want to come back. We’ve also put a lot of thought into our layout and buffer zones. And, we use pet-friendly cleaning products.”

Kasey selected a cloud-based software package to run the business, including tracking the dogs’ experiences and creating daily owner reports. She also has a strong support network.

“My family owns businesses and have provided a lot of support,” said Kasey. “Also, a friend created our logo, and I use social media for most of my marketing.”

What does the future hold?

“We’re going to continue updating the building and make improvements as we go,” said Kasey. “I’m looking at improving outdoor facilities and researching how to expand training and add grooming services.”

For more information about Jensen Kennels, please visit www.jensenkennels.weebly.com or check out their Facebook page.

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