ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Albany's four-legged friends weren't the only ones excited about Saturday's grand reopening of the Eastside Pet Salon and Dog Park located on Gillionville Road.
Owner Donna L'Esperance described the moments after she found her business heavily damaged from the January 2nd wind storm.
"Total shock! It took me a couple of days to wrap my head around it," L'Esperance said.
When she arrived, the owner found roof damage, a broken sign, and her dog park covered with more than 20 downed trees.
"The entire facility was closed for two weeks, the park was closed for three months," the owner added.
Now, after months of hard work, L'Esperance and her staff now have a fully functional salon and dog park.
"We've got the mud taken care of, the major ruts taken care of, so it's ready for people to come out and enjoy," L'Esperance said.
On Saturday, the business owner celebrated her recovery with a grand opening event.
Dogs and their owners lined up for a chance to enjoy the improved dog park, including longtime customer Tawana Williams and her dog, Gabby.
"Donna is a very sweet person. She loves animals and that's one thing that we love about Donna," Williams said.
The customer said she heard about the damaged business not long after the storm passed.
"It kind of put a damper on us, because we were like 'oh' and our heart went out to her," Williams said.
But even though the business saw a setback, Williams said she wouldn't go anywhere else.
"I'm going to stick with Donna until the end. I mean, I love Donna," Williams said.
And so do many other loyal customers.
"I had 121 appointments to reschedule during the two-week period that we were closed. No one went elsewhere, everyone waited," L'Esperance said.
The business owner said she's glad to see her customers again. And her four-legged friends are happy to see the new and improved park.
"The dogs that actually had not come here in a few months, it was wonderful. Not only were they happy to see the other dogs, it was the people as well," L'Esperance said.
Companion Animal Hospital offered discounted shots at Saturday's event. And the Albany Humane Society brought some of their dogs to enjoy the park and hopefully find a new home.
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