Hey, if you’re reading this, awesome! Thank you for taking the time out of your day to read the ramblings of a crazy dog-lady and new business owner. My name is Lu, and I run OhMyFluffyDog from the comforts of my living room (for now). Here’s a little bit about us, and how OMFD came to creation.
I grew up and have lived in Auckland my whole life. After meeting my husband, Tim (who lived in Wellington at the time), we decided to move down to Central Otago on a whim. Literally, we spent a week here before our wedding (in Wanaka) and decided soon after, that the scenery, the landscape and the life style was something we would love to experience. (Plus it was a priority for us to have a home of our own, and we all know the housing situation in Auckland so that was out of the question). Fast forward 3 months after the wedding, we shifted everything from Auckland to Cromwell.
I have had Theo for 6 years, since he was 8 weeks old. He’s been with me through it all. He was even the ring bearer at our wedding! When we moved down, we did this via a 3 day road trip, and little Theo travelled the whole way on our laps when we were in the car, or free reign in the car when we were on the Ferry through Cook Strait. Niko joined us soon after we arrived in Cromwell. We were fortunate enough to have found a small rental that would let us have two dogs. 3 months later, we achieved what we set out to do in Cromwell, we bought a house! And what best way to celebrate than with, not one, but two more new additions in our family? Coco and Milo! Before we welcomed Milo into our home, I had done my research and understood the time commitments it would take and risks associated with bringing up two pups together - the dreaded “litter mate syndrome”. I feel like we have successfully avoided this, but I’ll make a separate post on this later.
I’d also like to remind everyone reading this that I could only have my four fur-babies because I work from home! I trained as a school teacher in Auckland, and worked for two years in an Intermediate School. As much as I loved my students, I decided that I didn’t want to be a teacher anymore. If you know any teachers in your life, you will know exactly the amount of time commitment and also, emotional commitment you need to do the job. I wanted to branch out - and I found a role with a private educational company that allowed me to continue working with students, use the knowledge and experience I gained in the classroom, but let me work flexibly from home and wherever in the country.
As you can imagine, Tim and I quickly became known as the crazy-dog couple who treat their dogs like their children. We have this silly routine where we have brunch at a local dog-friendly cafe every Saturday, and depending on the weather and our mood, one or all of the dogs would join us. The more dog-crazy I got, the more I also wanted to meet other like minded people, but also, find new ways to tell the world about how great these four-legged-fluffy-friends were. I started searching around on Instagram, Facebook, and even google searched for apparel that dog-lovers could wear. I love accounts such as @pawz and @ironandrescue, and everything they stood for. I wanted a NZ version of this but could not find one. I felt inspired and motivated. I’ve never tried to start anything for myself, by myself before, so I thought if there was a time and a reason to put myself out there, I’d rather this be it! (I say myself, but Tim really is amazingly supportive and helpful when it comes to bank forms and my million doubts in myself sometimes)
Now, possibly the hardest part of starting OhMyFluffyDog was to think of a name. This name was going to stick for the next forever years, and people were going to be wearing and repping this. I wanted something simple, but unique (don’t we all). I think I started with ideas such as ‘PlayRuff’ but was worried about what this implied to other dog owners - no one wants their pups to be playing rough! And it slowly transformed into a list of Puns I could play with. I searched ‘OhMyDog’ on social platforms and was disheartened that there were a few accounts and other businesses built using this identity. So I went to sleep with ‘OhMyDog’ in my mind - it was somewhere between that place where you’re half awake and half asleep that OhMyFluffyDog took form! I woke up, and searched this one. SUCCESS. Mine. Bags. Double Bags. Dibs. And how perfect I thought it was for me. Anyone who knows me in real life, knows my tendency to over-swear if I’m comfortable with you, and also my over enthusiasm for puns. This also lead to ‘AW, Sticks!’. Just wait till the rest of my ideas take form in the future!
My short term goals right now for OMFD is really just to build up our brand, the image, and our customer base. I want to meet all the like minded dog-crazy people out there, and I want them to know who we are and what we do. I want to make a difference at the charities each month, even if it’s a small change, I want to get our name out there and know that what we are doing is making a difference to at least one pup/kitten’s life. Long term goals? To be honest, I didn’t start OMFD with a long term vision, I just wanted to wear some cool clothes with some cool dog designs! - the realisation that this could be something that I could still be doing in five, ten years time is a little scary for me, but I’m treating this as a day-by-day challenge. How cool would this be if OMFD was a name that every dog-owner/pet-account in the world knew? Instead of printing our designs onto shirts, how much more awesome would it be if one day, I could get these made elsewhere from scratch? Dreaming big, and until then, I guess I’ll fake it till I make it!
If you’ve gotten this far, I want to thank you, and all your support. I hope you like our brand, and the designs we have created. I hope that you will continue to support us, and maybe even tell some friends about us. This is also the first blog post I have ever written, so feel free to drop me some constructive criticism - have I gone on too long about something? Do I use confusing sentence structures that interrupt the flow of the content? Or maybe you just have some cool ideas that I can blog about next.