Today we’d like to introduce you to Jori Campagna.
Hi Jori, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
I started taking care of my neighbor’s pets when I was a teenager over 17 years ago.
Since then, it has always been so much more than just a job. I have a passion and love for animals, which is the basis for providing the utmost care for them. I truly believe they are family and never “just a pet”.
Growing up, I had the wonderful, formative experiences of having several pets of my own including hamsters, birds, ferrets, and a shetland sheepdog. I graduated from Northern Illinois University, originally intending to pursue wildlife conservation.
Life took a different path, and I realized that though there are definite challenges of being an entrepreneur, it was worth it to continue to build my business. I moved to the Raleigh area in 2013 and I am now happily providing pet care for families here.
After many years of being on my own, I decided to take the leap to bring on staff. As with all forms of growth, there were some hurdles, but overall I am grateful I made the decision to expand. I am happy to provide opportunities for my staff members, and they help me have a better work-life balance by allowing me to not stretch myself too thin.
Along this journey, I have had my dog Soleil as my constant companion for the last five years. He amazes me daily with his intelligence, charm, and soul. He loves practicing his agility course, and thoroughly enjoys his time accompanying me on nearly all of my dog walking and pet sitting visits.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
There have been several challenges along the way. Firstly, I have had no formal business education. I simply learned key concepts as I went, and asked for insight from a few people.
Secondly, I learned the hard way that, especially if you are going solo, you are very much at risk of burnout. The business was not only my livelihood but also my passion. And being a solo sitter for many years, it was a recipe for me struggling to say no when I needed to.
There would be times I would work 16-hour days, seven days a week, for weeks on end. There was a time when I would work about 355 days out of the 365 days each year. It was unsustainable, and it eventually led me to take the leap to bring on staff.
That was the next challenge as it took a lot for me to put my trust in others, and let them represent my business and its positive reputation that I had worked so hard to build.
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
We provide dog walking and pet sitting services designed to cater to your pet’s needs. In your home pet care allows for them to be more healthy, and relaxed, and receive much more attention and care than at a kennel.
Whether you work from home or are back in the office, we are happy to take your pup for a midday walk or play session in the yard to make sure they are getting their daily exercise! If you are going out of town, we will work with you to find the best fit for care for your pet while you are away. We have a variety of options including Zoomies (short) visits, Standard (half hour) visits, several hours visits, and Overnight Care.
We also offer special services to add to your pet’s well-being such as Dog Adventure Camp and Live-In Care.
Dog Adventure Camp is great not only for active and social dogs but for any who would enjoy excitement and variety in their routine. Almost all dogs would benefit from longer exercise sessions to keep in tip-top shape! Adventure Camp provides a healthy energy channel to let your dog explore the world and interact with other fur friends, all while under the skilled care of a human “Camp Counselor”.
The service includes pick-up and drop-off at your home, two to three hours of active adventuring in different locations around the Raleigh area providing physical and mental exercise, a ratio of three or fewer dogs to one human Camp Counselor, and lots of positive behavior reinforcement. Your pup will bond with their dog friends and love the new locations they will get to explore each time!
Live-In Care is popular with many clients as it provides your pet with extended company and care. Your sitter will sleep in your home overnight, plus stay extended hours throughout the day for the comfort of your pet, as well as an increased deterrent of home invasions.
This service is great for dogs with separation anxiety, high-energy dogs, puppies, and highly social/people-oriented dogs and cats. We are happy to provide this extended service to give you peace of mind that your pet is getting all the attention they desire!
Who else deserves credit in your story?
I could not have made it to where I am today without my parents, my boyfriend Anthony, my core staff, and my pup Soleil.
My parents have always been a support system for me. There have been countless phone calls to my mom while I am driving between pet sitting visits when I ask her to text me a list of to-do items that have popped up while I’ve been out and about, and she has been the listening ear for me when I am having difficult days that come with this job.
My dad has helped me when I have had car trouble on more than one occasion and kept things running smoothly so I could stick to my schedule, and if I ever need handyman advice when dealing with a situation in a client’s home, he is the one I call.
My boyfriend Anthony has helped me reinforce the idea that it is okay to set healthy boundaries and not be “on” nearly 24/7. I was getting very burnt out a while back, but he helped me take small steps to allow myself to have time off. He also used his skill of big-picture mapping to help me create a growth business plan, which allowed me to take on more staff and clients.
My core staff has been indispensable and I am so grateful for them. Ceridwyn specifically has been on staff for several years now and she has shown exemplary standards of customer service and pet care.
We send messages to clients at every visit, and she always gives wonderful summaries highlighting the pet’s personality. Her level of knowledge and care she provides are outstanding, and I am so proud to have her on the team.
Finally, my dog Soleil has also contributed to my success. He keeps me company throughout the day as he usually comes along to most of my visits, and is a constant reminder of what is actually important.
He has the incredible ability to live in the moment; he can slough off a negative experience much faster than I naturally can, but watching him do so helps me keep things in perspective. His heart and character are a constant light in my life, and he shares that with all of his fur friends as well!
- Dog Walking $24
- Pet Sitting $24
- Overnight Care $85
- Dog Adventure Camp $65
- Website: https://www.jorispetsitting.com/home.html
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/joris_pet_sitting
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jorispetsittinginc