I am deeply saddened by the closing of my business, Dolittle’s pet grooming, last month. We were able to increase our client base, received Best of Boston 2006 and contributed to many community- building events.
Unfortunately, we were not able to weather the cost of renting commercial space in Jamaica Plain. I looked at spaces elsewhere throughout JP and found them to be more expensive. As a personal choice, I did not look outside of JP. For me, a big part of wanting to be in business for myself was to be part of the fabric of what makes JP.
I think my clients are appalled to hear of our closing. Many of them are surprised to hear that rents are high. I am still receiving lots of phone calls daily from clients wanting help choosing a new grooming shop.
So, yes, there is a hole in my wake as there was with the closing of Hounds and Company. JP for a short time had a grooming shop, pet supply store and veterinarian! Sadly, only the veterinary practice remains. I would highly recommend JP Animal Clinic as a fabulous practice to bring pets as well as a local business that we should do our best to support.
We have seen other shops close up, and there may be more in the near future. Jamaica Plain needs to think about what it will look like down the road. How do we impact what businesses are here? How do we support and maintain what we want our business climate to look like?
I grew up in Jamaica Plain and have watched it go through a lot of changes. At this point I fear that we may be headed for something more along the lines of bland and uninteresting if we can’t support and maintain our diverse, funky and fabulous locally owned businesses. The JP Business and Professional Association has begun to delve into these issues, but it will take more than one volunteer organization to orchestrate change. So I say goodbye to JP as a local business owner, but I am not going anywhere otherwise. I have started work at the MSPCA Shelter. I find it very rewarding and hope to help strengthen the ties they have with the wonderful community of JP!