A lifelong passion-driven business, TAG’M Kennels, run by owners Gwyn and Terry Mathis in Stanfield, has been in operation for more than 40 years.
Located on Kennel Drive in the heart of Stanfield, the kennel and grooming all-in-one stop for pet care needs is dedicated to the quality care of their fuzzy customers.
After working in Charlotte and deciding to move to Stanfield, the Mathis family wanted to have space for show dogs and their family. It was when grooming her Schnauzer show dogs became a part-time job that Gwyn then saw it rapidly become a full-time job. TAG’M Kennels gets its name from Terry-And-Gwyn-Mathis.
Gwyn has been showing dogs for more than 45 years and breeds a litter of puppies each year. She often grooms the pets of third generation customers from all over the state who travel to her for her special care and technique. They breed Miniature Schnauzers for show or championship. According to Gwyn, Schnauzers are great dogs for agility and obedience competition. A Champion Stud service is also available at TAG’M.
Every year, Gwyn travels up and down the east coast to AKC All Breed Confirmation Dog Shows during the Spring and Fall seasons on the weekends where she shows her champion Schnauzers.
TAG’M Kennels accepts all breeds of dogs and cats for boarding any day of the week. The kennels, installed in 1997, are air conditioned and have indoor and outdoor runs, a fenced in play area for exercise, along with soft beds and blankets. Small breeds are $12 per day, medium breeds are $15 per day, and large breeds are $18 per day. Some of the busiest times of the year for boarding are during the summer holidays and on weekends when families want to escape to the mountains or the beach. At TAG’M Kennels, dogs are welcome to stay as long as they need. At one point, Gwyn had a dog stay for more than two years while the owner was in a nursing home.
Gwyn grooms dogs five days a week, Monday through Friday and is open from 8 am until 5 pm; Miniature Schnauzers, Poodles, Yorkies, Shih Tsus, ect., are groomed for $25 and up; Cockers, Scotties, Lhasha Apso, etc., are groomed for $35 and up; Airdales, Wheaten Terriers, Standard Poodles, etc., are groomed for $40 and up. There are also coat conditioning and flea treatments available in addition to the normal grooming appointments. TAG’M Kennels also offers a pick-up and drop-off service for Charlotte residents, who need their pet groomed but can’t make the journey out of the city.
“A lot of the puppies that we have raised over the years live in Charlotte. People work in the city, and it is a long ways to come out here. So we will go and pick them up, groom them, and take them back home,” said Gwyn.
Over the years, Gwyn has worked with all sizes and breeds of dogs and has a lifelong experience in the body language of animals and how to respond to nervousness and frightened dogs who can at times strike out of fear.
“Its all about body language,” Gwyn explained. “Some dogs are scared when they come here. If you reach in to a kennel and grab them, they may bite you. I’ve had enough experience that I can read their body language, and I am careful. I’m not rough with them. I don’t hurt them. If you hurt them, they’ll hurt you.”
During a month away from work and healing from a recent injury from a fall, Gwyn was encouraged by the well wishers from customers and the community and their continued loyalty to TAG’M Kennels despite her time away from work. When she was finally able to come back to grooming, Gwyn did so slowly, but her customers stayed loyal
“I want to thank my loyal customers. They have stuck with me. People called, and people brought flowers. And then I started back slowly, but everyone was so good to me,” said Gwyn.
Choosing to be a stay at home mom while running a business was an easy deci- sion for the Mathis family. After 40 years of living, working, and raising a family in Stanly County, Terry and Gwyn Mathis say they know everyone in the county and are happy to have called it home.
“It was a way I could work from home and still have children,” said Gwyn. “It’s something I have always loved. I know everyone in Stanly County; I may not know their names, but I do know their dog’s name.”
For more information on TAG’M Kennels, grooming, breeding, and boarding, call 704-888-4637 or stop by at 126 Kennel Road in Stanfield.