Bottom Line: Lebanon police dispatcher opens dog boarding business

  • John Lippman. Copyright (c) Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

Valley News Business Writer
Published: 10/10/2020 9:49:50 PM
Modified: 10/10/2020 9:49:41 PM

Haley Tucker has wanted to work with dogs as long as she can remember.

“As a first-grader, I wanted to be a vet. Then it was a dog trainer. Then to run a dog rescue sanctuary,” Tucker said. “Dogs being my favorite animal, I was naturally drawn to all of it.”

Tucker, 30, will soon leave her job as an administrative assistant and dispatcher with the Lebanon Police Department to open Jezzie’s Place, a dog boarding facility adjacent to her home in Canaan. Jezzie’s Place had a soft opening last month when it began boarding dogs over the weekend and will open full time on Nov. 6.

The newly built facility comes as Chosen Valley Pet Resort in Enfield said it was closing after nine months.

If giving up a secure job with the city of Lebanon and embarking on a new dog care business when COVID-19 is wreaking havoc on the economy seems like a bowser of an idea, Tucker is undaunted.

“The timing definitely could have been better — I often wonder if I’m crazy for starting a business during a pandemic — but I’m not sure there ever is a perfectly right time,” she said. “I knew it would always be a risk, but one I’ve always felt worth taking.”

Anyone can open a dog boarding facility in New Hampshire, as the state does not regulate the business.

But Tucker said she has taken educational and training workshops over the years in preparation, including subjects like dog aggression and “dog body language” in addition to working part time at Upper Valley Humane Society and at Mountain View Pet Resort in Canaan.

Tucker, whose website features glowing endorsements from Mountain View Pet Resort owner Mary Blain, Cornish dog trainer Sarah Teffner and Norwich dog trainer Sue Kenney, said her “ultimate goal” is to start a nonprofit dog rescue mission and dog sanctuary and she sees “a successful for-profit dog business funding the nonprofit part of it.”

Jezzie’s Place is named after a Lab/bluetick coonhound/Great Pyrenees mix puppy that Tucker adopted when she was 17 years old but who afterward was diagnosed with bone cancer and did not see her second birthday.

A “self-confessed pittie expert” who is also partial to “blocky-headed labs, hounds, giant breeds, and working dogs,” Tucker herself has a pit bull named Chester and a Lab mix named Phoebe.

She also has two pet rats named Butters and Bronson.

Pet rats?

“Rats are just misunderstood creatures,” Tucker explains. “Kind of like pit bulls.”

Hanover’s Market Table, Fairlee’s Lunchboxboth to close

The coronavirus has felled two more Upper Valley restaurants: Hanover’s Market Table and The Lunchbox Deli & Cafe in Fairlee.

Market Table, located in the lower level of Jay Campion’s building at the corner of South Main Street and Lebanon Street, announced that the last day it will be open is Sunday, Oct. 25.

“When we closed due to the onset of COVID-19 in March, we were unsure what the future held,” Market Table posted on Facebook. “However, with dining moving indoors as temperatures fall, we have reluctantly decided not to renew our lease.”

Opened in 2012 by Nicky Barraclough — who previously owned the Allechante cafe in Norwich — Market Table has been one of downtown Hanover’s prime destinations, especially for diners seeking a lighter space than a tavern.

Campion said he expects the lower level “will remain a restaurant space” and he is in talks with potential operators.

“Hanover is coming back with the students coming back, and there are people who want to start restaurants,” he said.

Although many Hanover restaurants were able to stay afloat this summer by moving service outdoors, they are bracing for the winter season that will test patrons’ willingness to dine inside.

Market Table’s end marks at least the fifth restaurant closure in Hanover since the pandemic began, following Salt hill Pub, The Swirl & Pearl, Skinny Pancake and Morano Gelato.

Meanwhile, breakfast and lunch spot The Lunchbox Deli & Cafe in Fairlee, located a couple doors away from the shuttered Whippi Dip on Route 5, is closing.

Owner Amber Sharon said the property has been sold and “given the state of the situation” from the pandemic’s effect on the restaurant business, The Lunchbox’s last day will be at the end of this month or early next.

Sharon, who previously worked at both Lou’s in Hanover and Stella’s in Lyme and opened The Lunchbox four years ago, said she has no plans to find a new location.

“Nope, this is the end of the line,” she said.

The Lunchbox is the third restaurant along Route 5 to fall during COVID-19.

The Whippi Dip did not reopen this summer and Isabel’s Cafe in East Thetford closed earlier this summer. Both are for sale.

Rumors of HVAC move are hot air

Large “Now Hiring” signs that ARC Mechanical has hung in the former Illuminations lighting store space on Route 12A have sparked speculation that the HVAC company is getting ready to occupy one of the most highly trafficked corners in the city.

Cool your jets. Glen Road Plaza owner Duane Cook says the long-vacant corner store is serving another purpose for ARC Mechanical.

“They’re just using the windows to advertise the need to hire,” Cook explained.

Given the high volume of cars passing the corner of Glen Road and North Main Street, “it’s a good pretty location for that,” Cook noted.

Bottom Line is a good location to let the Upper Valley know about your own business moves. Contact me at jlippman@vnews.com.




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