“I grew up with dogs- Lots of them! And from as early as I can remember I wanted to do something creative and fun around them, perhaps open an animal shelter where I could always be surrounded by wagging tails and happy barks! That didn’t happen and instead, I went on to study Human Resource Management at the London School of Economics and then to work in a multinational bank: Boring!”
The “boring” was highly accentuated, and out of it shined Rashi Narang’s passion for dogs and other pets! “We are India’s exclusive luxury brand for ‘pawsh’ and fun doggie couture. Our products range from comfy and customized dog beds, chic collars and leashes, fashionable dog apparel, to an awesome range of accessories for pets and pet lovers! Heads Up For Tails is a small business created with lots of love and passion for what we do!” says Rashi, introducing Heads Up For Tails. Heads Up For Tails was launched in 2008 after a year of research and understanding the pet business and pet market in India.
With bubbling alacrity she goes on to share her story, “Then in 2006- Sara came into my life. She was the first dog for whom I had real and full responsibility (earlier, it was always my parents who were in charge!). Sara was a fur-ball of love, naughtiness and a determination to break every rule that was ever made for her! In my quest to make sure that she had the best of everything, I scoured the markets and was dismayed by the quality of products available in the local pet stores. That’s when I decided to start a premium pet products line, offering lots of fun and useful stuff for pet lovers like myself to pamper their pets from Head to Tail!”
Rashi feels that the pet industry in India is still at a very nascent stage but is slowly and surely growing! “There is a lot more awareness than when we first started out. Dogs are becoming part of the family now, which is really a pleasure to see!” she adds.
Forming a team was very challenging, and for the longest time Rashi managed every aspect of the business on her own. “We have a fabulous team now- and I’m very proud of each of them. Each of them came in contact with me through friends and family. The most important thing for me is that each of them love dogs, and are very passionate about what they do!” adds Rashi, introducing her team.
The all women team includes: Shreya, a huge dog lover who pampers her 2 gorgeous dogs more than anyone else. She has a degree in Psychology from the University of Warwick, and handles Business development at Heads Up For Tails. Tanya is a graduate from the National Institute of Fashion Technology. She has 3 gorgeous dogs who she adores! A workaholic, with a love for Fashion, Tanya makes some real special stuff for HUFT! Meher loves animals- may it be camels, birds or dogs, and almost has a miniature zoo in her house! An amazing photographer- Meher has been the in-house photographer for Head’s Up For Tails ever since they started. Aakriti is a freelance TV producer and writer/ blogger based in Mumbai. At HUFT she combines her passion of writing with her love for Dogs and handles content writing for their blog. “It’s really fun to have an all women’s team! More to girl power!” says an enthusiastic Rashi.
HUFT has about 500 products on offer and new ones are added every week. “Our best sellers are our collars and accessories such as bandanas, and bowties! Our beds are very popular too. We customize beds to fit into people’s homes so that they match with their home decor. We also take a number of personalized orders for apparel etc.” adds Rashi.
For the Heads Up For Tails brand, they indigenously manufacture most of the items. For other brands they purchase the inventory and stock all products in house so they can be sure of its availability and perfect condition before sending out orders. “This is definitely more expensive for a small company like ours, but it is important for me to be able to ship out orders in time, and to inspect the quality/condition of the product before I do. Moreover, since the industry is fairly disorganized, many suppliers do not have a logistics system in place and are unfortunately very unreliable. I hope this will change soon!” says Rashi.
“I am an animal person- I’ve always been drawn to them and they to me. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been rescuing little puppies or hurt/injured dogs, feeding stray animals etc. It gives me immense pleasure and I always wish I could do more. It is my dream to be able to home and protect lots and lots of animals in need, and I’m saving up to open my dream animal shelter. Meanwhile, we support every animal related cause that we can. We are a small company, and funds are limited so I can’t do a lot- but we donate merchandise, partner in events, help in finding homes for stray or abandoned pups, sponsor medical treatments etc. It really is never enough though..lots more to come!” Rashi adds on a concluding note.