IPOH, Oct 15 — Life threw 42-year-old Juvena Chan a curveball when she was retrenched from a company early this year during the onset of Covid-19 pandemic.
Fortunately for her, a friend decided to set up an e-commerce company during Chinese New Year and roped her in as his personal assistant.
“Part of his e-commerce business involves selling pet accessories. Later, he decided to expand to operating a pet taxi too,” she said.
Speaking to Malay Mail, Chan said she was in charge of the pet taxi services now.
Since starting the service — Paw Pet Taxi — in July, Chan said business has been building up.
“Some days, I can take up to four dogs a day,” she said, adding her services include picking and sending dogs for grooming sessions, consultation at veterinarians and also cremation for pets that had died.
“The charges will depend on the distance I need to travel and the waiting time.”
While Chan’s working hours are until 5pm, her hours actually stretch beyond that.
“I need to disinfect the van daily to ensure the vehicle is free from ticks or fleas. There are also times where the dogs that I ferry suffer from car sickness or decide to pass motion.”
Some may frown about having to deal with animals poop and pee in their line of duty but Chan takes it in her stride being an animal lover herself.
“Most importantly, I have a job at this juncture as many are jobless due to the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Chan’s services are available daily and can be booked at 017-2280768 or Paw Pet Taxi’s Facebook page.
Animal rescuer Mutts and Mittens (M&M) started their pet taxi services four years ago when nobody had service in Ipoh.
Considered a pioneer at that time, M&M president Chong Choon Kit said he was scaling down on the service now as more competitors were coming in following the Covid-19 pandemic.
“People who became jobless due to the pandemic are turning to become pet taxi drivers. Officially, there are six operators in Ipoh but unofficially, there are more than 10 operators,” said Chong, who is now focusing more on his mongrel adoption centre and cremation services.
However, if there was a need, Chong’s pet taxi can travel outstation and the furthest he has gone was to Johor Baru.
Like Chan, Chong’s charges depend on the distance and time spent.
“The highest I charged was RM900 to send a mongrel to Johor Baru for medical treatment,” he said.
His services are available from Monday to Saturday from 9am to 6pm. For bookings, he can be contacted at 014-624 8070.
For Ipoh Society for the Prevention of Cruelty Against Animals (ISPCA), its pet taxi service started two years ago out of necessity.
Its president Ricky Soong said previously, the society depended on volunteers to ferry rescued animals.
“As time goes by, we see volunteers are also tied down by work so we decided to start our own pet taxi services,” said Soong.
On days when there are no rescue missions, ISPCA’s pet taxi is available to send dogs for grooming, veterinary appointments and cremation services with charges depending on distance and wait time.
Those interested to book ISPCA’s pet taxi, that is available daily, can contact Soong (012-518 6915).