Rodson Garcia fixes the collar of his dog, Louie, who, along with his mate, Jasper, have become famous on Instagram. [Photo © Johanna Bernardi]
Who knew having a pet you love, and are proud of, could lead to business success? Well it can as Rodson Garcia, Joanna Suan and Troy Farncombe demonstrated at the recent Ottawa Pet Expo along with several other pet-friendly business people.
Jasper and Louie’s Instagram account, @CanadianBros, was launched by Rodson Garcia in 2017. Today it has more than 47,000 followers. It started when a company sent Garcia a dog collar to promote on his personal Instagram account. @CanadianBros was made. [Photo © Johanna Bernardi]
Garcia adopted Jasper in 2015 and realized he was a shy canine. He adopted Louie (left) a year later hoping to make bring Jasper out of his shell. It worked. [Photo © Johanna Bernardi]
Garcia’s day job is as a business analyst in Toronto. He says the money he earns from the dogs’ Instagram account covers the cost of pet ownership. [Photo © Aimee Veiner]
Garcia, Jasper and Louie travel across Canada to promote their account. Garcia says people fall in love with the dogs wherever they go. [Photo © Aimee Veiner]
A company sent Garcia this custom blanket to advertise on the dogs’ account. He also works with hotel, home decor, pet accessories, and clothing companies. [Photo © Johanna Bernardi]
The Expo set up photo booths, so others could show off their Instagram worthy animals. [Photo © Johanna Bernardi]
Joanna Suan and Troy Farncombe are the creators of Head-Lites, which are light-up collars for pets. The couple makes these collars in their home in Grimsby, Ont. They are sold worldwide. [Photo © Johanna Bernardi]
[Photo © Johanna Bernardi]
[Photo © Aimee Veiner]
Suan originally sewed the collars by hand, but later bought a sewing machine to keep up with demand. Farncombe handles the electrical work.
Sabrina Gariepy-Fortin tries a collar on her dog, Balto. She said she bought a Head-Lites collar to make walking Balto at night easier and safer. [Photo © Aimee Veiner]
This business is a part-time gig. Suan works as a medical marketer and Farncombe is a physicist. [Photo © Aimee Veiner]
They donate the collars to guide dogs who graduate from the Canine Vision Canada program in Oakville. She said the collars allow guide dog users feel at ease, as others can easily see their dogs. [Photo © Johanna Bernardi]