Meet Carol and Ollie, our brand-new branch directors for We Love Pets Tamar Valley! Mother and son who have had quite the adventurous life so far: from living in a yurt for a year in Sourdeval in Normandy to living in an island near Thailand! Now they are looking forward to working together at We Love Pets.
What pets do you have? What are their names?
Carol: We have always had animals; we absolutely love any pet. Our wire-haired terrier, Ruby, sadly passed in September; she was the family dog that came everywhere with us. We have a cat called Daisy, 16, she’s the last out of our five wonderful cats we rescued whilst living in France.
Ollie: Don’t forget about the tortoise called Ragnar.
Carol: Yes! We love Viking names, so this seemed like the perfect name for him! We spent 4 ½ years living in France, pretty much in the middle of nowhere, and it was amazing. We had a bit of land where we kept 47 different animals. Sheep, geese, ducks, guinea pigs, hamsters, cats, you name it! We absolutely love guinea pigs; we had one called Doogle- who turned out to be Doogalina and had three babies, which started our love for guinea pigs.
Ollie: I’ve always loved parrots too; many people think of me as a bit of a parrot whisperer!
What have you done before deciding to start your journey with WLP?
Carol: I trained as a homoeopath, I used to have a professional practice. I then made a change to work with children. I’ve worked in a nursery and used to teach English in a school in France. I’ve also been a nanny, which was great! Now we’re settled in Devon, we’re ready to start a business and enjoy the outdoors. On the side, I’m a director of a programme called the Fairytale Way, which is about healthy eating and lifestyle for women. It’s all about rewiring the brain about food choices.
Ollie: I am an environmental scientist for a company called Amy, near Brighton. I originally wanted to be a botanist but then decided environmental science was what I wanted to do. I did consider physics at one point, but my passion for the outdoors and Earth meant environmental science was the one for me! However, I want a change to do something that will allow me more time outside, rather than at a desk all day. I’m excited to move to Devon and start a new chapter with our business.
What are you most excited about having a WLP branch?
Carol: I’m most looking forward to being my own boss and feeling more in control. Secondly, I cannot wait to have a job that means I get to spend time outdoors with wonderful animals. Embracing the outdoors is when I’m at my happiest.
Ollie: I’m looking forward to not being tied to a desk all day, five days a week. Owning a business will give me more variety in my days at work, and I can’t wait to spend more time outside with some lovely pets!
How did you discover WLP?
Carol: My daughter, Ollie’s sister, worked for the Basingstoke branch and was saying how great it is. As Grace has a business degree, me and my husband said that she should start a branch. However, it wasn’t right for her. Then I thought, this sounds like something I’d love to do.
Ollie: Mum pitched the idea to me, and I thought that I’d love to be involved. It sounded like a brilliant change to have our own pet care business.
Carol: It’s weird because I feel like We Love Pets was meant to be. We had to live somewhere temporarily for seven months before we moved into our current house. I had enquired about We Love Pets but then forgot about it for months and moved house. I then went back to the old house to collect post, and the We Love Pets brochure was there. That’s when I booked a discovery day, met Ryan, and everything fell into place! It just felt right for us.
What hobbies do you have?
Ollie: I am a very keen reader **Ollie proceeds to turn the camera to show us his impressive collection of books stretching the entire length of his flat** I love reading all sorts of different books. My favourite genre is science fiction; the His Dark Materials series is one I’d always recommend!
Carol: I absolutely love hiking, and we live in the most beautiful place for it. Our son in law also got my husband and I into weightlifting a couple of years back, and we absolutely love doing that together. I have always been a big foodie and enjoy growing my own fruit and veg, so now we’re settled in this house, I’ll begin my own little allotment in the garden!
Ollie: We both love kayaking too, anything that involves a bit of outdoor adventure!