Melissa’s Menagerie moves to bigger space, plans to convert old pet boarding facility to animal rescue shelter

Melissa's Menagerie
Melissa’s Menagerie is moving from 11015 W. 75th St. to a bigger space across the street at 7436 Nieman Road.

In less than two years, Melissa’s Menagerie has outgrown its space in Shawnee.

Owner Melissa Henderson has plans to move her doggie daycare and pet boarding facility into a new space across the street; the new facility has roughly five times the capacity of the current space of 1,850 square feet.

While the current space at 11015 W. 75th St. reaches capacity at 55 dogs and 10 cats, the new space could fit as many as 250 dogs and 25 cats.

Melissa's Menagerie
Melissa Henderson, owner of Melissa’s Menagerie, plans to keep her current facility and convert it to an animal rescue shelter.

Henderson hopes to open the new space at 7436 Nieman Road sometime in January 2019.

She said she’s also excited about the new facility’s indoor play area for dogs, plus dedicated office space for humans like her.

“Right now, it’s tough; if it’s raining, if it’s snowing, they can’t be outside as much and run off the energy,” Henderson said. “We’ll have so much space indoors, they can do all of their running and playing inside.”

The current space for Melissa’s Menagerie has three indoor playrooms. This new space, on the other hand, is so much bigger that Henderson hasn’t quite configured the layout yet.

“It’s a huge area; we haven’t broken it up into playrooms yet, so we’re still working that out,” she said, adding that she plans to have a completely separate space for the dog kennels. The new kennel space alone will be almost the size of the current facility, she said.

Melissa’s Menagerie also plans to keep a boarding room for cats.

All in all, she hopes to double her staff of 19 after the transition.

Henderson started her business about four years ago as a pet sitter and dog walker. She’s worked for a veterinarian, an animal shelter and a dog wash and obedience school. Then, in June 2017, she opened the current daycare space.

Her passion is animal rescue, which is why she plans to continue offering all rescue shelters a 50 percent discount on boarding and daycare, “which I think is one of the biggest keys to us growing so quickly,” she said.

In fact, she also plans to convert the current space into an animal rescue shelter as well. Once the new facility is open, she will turn her focus to the new plans for the shelter, which she hopes to open by February.

“It’s going to be amazing, having both, because like I said, rescue is my true passion,” Henderson said. “I love the daycare and boarding business; I just love animals, but I want to be able to help a lot more special needs animals, senior animals, animals that just need a second chance.”