Since time immemorial, dogs have been man’s best friend and if what Thor Freudenthal’s 2009 movie, ‘Hotel for Dogs’, achieved anything but comedy, it set a precedent, which inspired one Namibian dog lover.
Brigitte’s Pet Care Centre is the hotel for dogs in Windhoek.
When dog owners travel on holiday or need to leave their pets in good hands as they run their errands, Brigitte Meissner’s is the number to dial.
Meissner previously worked for the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), which she managed for five years. This she did before acquiring a plot in Nubuamis Hills, close to Brakwater in 2001 to open the dog hotel.
“I have been passionate about dogs for as long as I can remember but I have been training them since I was 13. Sometimes I think I am more dog than human,” jokes Meissner who manages the hotel.
There are 60 kennels for the K9, with a huge yard to accommodate the beautiful, the bolder and the fiercest of dogs.
In fact, even the scariest of dogs, German shepherd, Rottweiler or pit-bull, cowers in Meissner’s presence.
Brigitte’s Pet Care Centre welcomes and accommodates about 16-20 guests per day on an average day but during peak seasons, especially the festive period, it can cater to up to 60 dogs and 15 cats.
And they come in all shapes and sizes. She has also looked after hamsters, parrots and even snakes.
She charges N$160 per day for big dogs, N$140 for medium-sized dogs, N$130 for smaller dogs and N$60 for cats.
Meissner has two fulltime workers who help her around the hotel; Moses Goeiman and Bernard Noariseb. The latter has been with Meissner for nine years now.
“Plans are underway to expand the business and introduce a grooming salon for the pets. Many dog owners always request that I introduce a training school and hopefully before the end of the year, that will be a reality. There is a need for a qualified dog trainer in Namibia and I’m glad to fill the gap at present,” she says.