Meet: Mugsy & Moxie’s Bully Couture:
Pampering pooches and putting them in their place
Name of Business: Mugsy & Moxie’s Bully Couture, with store brand Bo & DeeMo
Address: 420 S. Rampart Blvd., #150, Las Vegas, NV 89145
Email: [email protected]
Hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday
Owned by: Kevin and Dee Mounts (aka the Bully Girl)
In business since: We have manufactured our brand since 2007; we opened the store in June 2012.
Describe your business.
Mugsy & Moxie’s Bully Couture is an all-breed boutique that specializes in the nine bully breeds: English bulldog, French bulldog, American bulldog, pug, boxer, bull terrier, mastiff, Boston terrier and pit bull. We offer “Dog Speak” dog training in the store.
We sell local artisan products and make custom products to look like your dog. We can feature them on placemats, T-shirts, tote bags and baby items. We feature only Las Vegas artists so they have a steady outlet to earn an income. Every product is tested by the Bully Girl and our dogs. We know every detail of each product so we can educate customers.
We offer essential oils to encourage health and grooming products to treat common skin issues. We design and create apparel and accessories to our customers’ specifications, including wedding outfits, bow ties, hats, even a Prince service dog harness.
In addition, we feature our own Bo & DeeMo line of apparel. We offer professional fitting services for collars and apparel. Fabrics are chosen specifically to soothe sensitive skin. And we have stimulating dog toys to train unwanted behavior, including hyperactivity, boredom and anxiety, leaving dogs fulfilled and submissive.
Who are your customers?
Dog lovers who want to be the best fur parents; any bully family; and new dog parents who want to be educated on needs and care. Our customers are high-end animal lovers who see their dogs as family members, not pets.
What makes your business unique?
We offer education on dog behavior. It’s quick help for those who are at the end of their wicks.
How do you train dogs?
I teach “Dog Speak.” It’s a communication that dogs already do between each other, but I teach humans how to tell dogs what they want without any verbal commands. It’s only with touch or leash handling.
I make it affordable because I don’t have to leave my store to train. It’s a private session for $50 an hour.
When the client arrives with their dog, I immediately read their body language. I look for stress, frustration, fear, anxiety. I never touch the dog or say hello to the dog. I ignore the dog and speak with the family.
After we establish the issues, I take the leash and explain how a collar should fit so the dog is under control and immediately understands what you want.
Next, I evaluate by taking the dog for a walk away from the owner. This is usually where the issues come out — either pulling, bolting or wrapping around the walker, anxiety or whining. I immediately touch the dog to correct its bad behavior. Usually it takes a few minutes to get the dog to submit.
If the dog has aggression, I find out if it’s really aggression or just a warning behavior. Then I educate the human about the difference between the two. So many small breeds manipulate owners by whining and yelping.
We can cure issues with walking on a leash, barking at other dogs, socialization, rules, nipping, potty problems, exercise and stimulation. Each training client walks out like the dog whisperer. No more screaming commands or yelling at the dog frustrated. The human dog parent is empowered by the end of the hour.
Can any dog be trained?
To some extent, yes. I train all ages, from 2 months old to 12 years old.
A good trainer never says, “This dog can’t be trained.” A good trainer adapts to the dog. Every dog is different.
What is the hardest part about doing business in Las Vegas?
The climate. If it’s too cold or windy or hot, many breeds can’t be outside without apparel, shoes or a stroller.
What is the best part about doing business in Las Vegas?
Vegas is a “dog town”. It’s becoming more and more like Europe, where everyone takes their dogs with them.
Las Vegas also is the center of the universe for small business. Since it’s a tourist town and shopping mecca, many of our customers find us by accident or travel to Vegas to shop with us.
What obstacles has your business overcome?
The recession and months where it was tight financially.
But we powered through with little PR or advertising because our community supports us, believes in us and is talking about us. No small business can survive without their community. We are very thankful Las Vegas sees our passion and has accepted us as special.
How can Nevada improve its business climate?
Stop taxing the small-business owner. Instead reward small business.
In Las Vegas, small businesses are responsible for more than 40 percent of business and employment, and most give back to the community. Building something from nothing, surviving and taking care of our community shouldn’t be dinged with more taxes but should be rewarded. It’s hard work.
What have you learned from the recession?
Both of our companies were brought up in the recession, and there was a huge risk that we weren’t going to make it. But we learned how to adapt without compromising our brand, service or dedication to both our dog families and the community.
This is something that can’t be taught. You really have to live it.
We also took a risk by not having the boutique online. But our city is very important to us, and we urge customers who are out of state or international to book a trip to Las Vegas and shop with us.