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Kai Ryssdal: No matter how bad the economy gets, there are things some people just aren’t going to skimp on. Organic food, maybe. Or where the weather’s not cooperating, a good blast of air conditioning. Those are businesses that you figure would do well despite the recession. That’s the thought behind our series The Upside. Today, a decidedly non-human expense. Some people just can’t stop pampering their pets, which puts doggie daycare in a pretty good position.
Andrew Kim: My name is Andrew Kim, and the name of the business is “Healthy Spot.” Our primary focus is on nutrition. We carry natural, holistic, raw and raw alternative foods. We have a small dog daycare service, grooming, pet massage therapy and a variety of other services.
We have not felt the impact of the recession. We’ve been able to grow steadily in this environment. I’ve heard customers comment that they’d rather cut back on all their personal expenses before they cut back on the proper care for their dog.
PET OWNER: My name is Kathleen, and I brought my Molly girl — she’s a Dachshund — in for her spa bath. There are some things that people just do. And if you like your dog and you’re good to your dog, then you try to keep them healthy and happy. And recession or not, sometimes that’s important.
KIM: A lot of us walked away from maybe more financially rewarding opportunities to work here or start this business because, one, we get to bring our dog to work. Two, when you’re working and you’re in an environment where people feel like you’re helping them, it just feels good. There’s something really good about that.
RYSSDAL: That was Andrew Kim at The Healthy Spot in Santa Monica, Calif.
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