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Boynton Beach resident plans to open DAWG, a ‘Disney World’ for dogs

Jul 27th

Orlando may have Disney World for humans but Boynton Beach will soon have “Disney World” for dogs.

That’s Hannah Wickins’ plan for the 20,000-square-foot spot near Home Depot off Woolbright Road. It used to be home to Bravo Supermarket.

“It is a whole new concept in dog daycare and pet humanization,” the Boynton Beach resident told the city commission last week while presenting her plans, which they approved.

Wickins’ business is called Dog Activity World Group, also known as DAWG. It will offer daycare and boarding, and Wickins says the dogs will be busy every second of their stay.

There will be ball pits, large agility balls, brain-stimulating games, treadmills for dogs, bubble machines, splash zones, ball launchers and a 160-foot lure run.

Wickins also plans to offer pet massages, birthday parties, “barkmitzvahs,” “yappy hours,” training and obedience classes, and photography sessions. Dog owners will also be able to receive notifications on their phone alerting them to when their dog ate, was given its medicine or even used the facilities, or in their case, the grass. When dropping off Fido, owners won’t have to get out of their cars because there will be valet service where pets are escorted inside by DAWG employees.    There will also be webcams.

Construction should start in about two weeks and should be completed in mid-September, Wickins said.

The idea for DAWG came from Wickins’ personal experience boarding her dog when she had to travel. She never was happy with the level of care and she said to herself, “the whole process needs to be revolutionized.”

Wickins plans to hire seven employees, with room for more, and the care center will be staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. She’ll offer luxury and regular suites for overnight, and estimates the cost to be around $60 including two days of daycare.

The new plan for the former Bravo Supermarket spot comes at a time of rejuvenation for the plaza. The Palm Beach Post’s Jeff Ostrowski reported in May that Camping World recently bought the long-empty Home Depot Expo Center property immediately south of the incoming dog facility.

“The plaza’s coming back and we’re very, very excited” Wickins said.

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