A 23-year-old entrepreneur from Sully who started a dog walking business at the age of 13 is now celebrating the first anniversary of opening a dog outdoor activity centre, and has his sights set on long-term business growth.
Sean Mayor launched Dog Adventure Land, a stress-free, outdoor activity centre for dogs in June 2021 in response to the social and separation anxiety experienced by puppies and young dogs born during the height of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Developed to be a home-away-from-home for up to 25 dogs from across the Vale of Glamorgan each day, Dog Adventure Land offers beloved pets a range of sand pits, large fields, agility activities and indoor sofas with heaters to enjoy, all before being bathed and returned home to their owners as part of the reliable pick-up and drop-off service. Dog Adventure Land was spawned from Sean’s successful dog walking business, PB Dog Care, when after a decade and over 5,000 walks completed, Sean was ready to expand.
Over the past nine months, Dog Adventure Land has become recognised nationwide as the only Welsh day care centre for dogs that operates predominantly outside. But the self-taught entrepreneur behind Dog Adventure Land has extensive business growth plans, aiming to open three new locations outside of the Vale of Glamorgan over the next five years to respond to the demand he’s already experiencing.
Speaking of his beginnings in the dog day care industry, Sean said:
“Caring for dogs has always been a passion of mine, but I never could have imagined what started as a small dog-walking business as a young teen would allow me to expand further into the dog care industry.
“When we launched Dog Adventure Land, we had three dogs in our care each day. Our focus was to give dogs a natural environment for them to be themselves, while boosting their social skills. Most importantly, we wanted to relieve them of their separation anxiety by giving them a routine. It’s our dedication and passion that has helped us become a leading dog care facility in the Vale of Glamorgan, with the maximum 25 dogs in our care every day.”
Sean launched Dog Adventure Land with the support of Big Ideas Wales, which is part of Business Wales and funded by Welsh Government to support entrepreneurship in Wales. The service is aimed at anyone between the age of 5 and 25 who wants to develop a business idea, including students and graduates, as part of its commitment to the Young Person’s Guarantee
Sean first heard about Big Ideas Wales when one of the service’s Role Models visited his school to share his personal journey in launching a business. Years later, Sean approached Big Ideas Wales himself and was instantly paired with a business advisor who assisted him in the planning and early stages of launching of his business – from writing a business plan to applying for land registration. As the business began to grow, so did Sean’s work with Business Advisor Mark Adams, who was on-hand to support him with creating and maintaining profit and loss accounts and business development plans.
It is this support that inspired Sean to recently become a Big Ideas Wales Role Model, swapping puppies for pupils as he goes back to school to offer advice to young entrepreneurs who are eager to build a successful business too.
“I’m eager to share my experience as a young entrepreneur and inspire others. I’m not an academic person, but I have been fortunate enough to build my own thriving business despite this and it’s important that likeminded young people realise that you’re still capable of success even if you stray from the academic norm and follow your personal goals. I owe the booming growth of Dog Adventure Land to the wonderful support offered by Big Ideas Wales and my own incredible team at Dog Adventure Land, especially day care manager Matthew, for the determination and passion they put into our dream every day.”
As well as new sites, Sean has more immediate plans to introduce dog training facilities and classes, as well as overnight boarding to the services offered by Dog Adventure Land.
Speaking of his achievements, Carolyn Goodwin at Big Ideas Wales said: “It is inspiring to know that Sean built a successful dog walking business whilst still at school, and it is commendable that he sought the support of Big Ideas Wales whilst launching Dog Adventure Land. Big Ideas Wales can support young people in every moment of their business journey, and Sean is a great testament to this. I look forward to watching the growth of both businesses and to see Sean inspire others as a Big Ideas Wales Role Model.”
The Welsh Government’s Big Ideas Wales programme encourages young people aged between 5 and 25 to develop entrepreneurial skills and start a business. Part of the Business Wales Service, it is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund. For more information, visit www.bigideas.wales.