Willy Dog Corp. does not exist, it is Willydog Ltd. aka World’s Best Hot Dog Carts; U.S. HotDog; Carts of Canada. These are all variations of the same carts with the same crappy warranty.
My ordeal began when I ordered a Willy Dog hot dog cart on July 19,2005. The promised delivery date of two weeks never happened in spite of verbal and written guarantees and paid deposits. I told Will Hodgkiss, company president, I would pick up the cart in Kingston, Ontario, near the end of August for our planned sales on Labor Day weekend and beyond. The cart was not ready and would not be in two weeks, even though their Internet adds did (in 2005) state a two-week delivery. I was forced to cancel out festival/fair bookings and lose deposits, as well as planned income at various summer festivals. The season was over and still no cart.
I still wished to pursue selling at summer and fall festivals and hoped I would have better luck next year. Will Hodgkiss said he would honor previous prices and commitments.
By March 2006 Will Hodgkiss, still hadn’t built my cart. I canceled the hot dog cart and opted to use my $2,000 deposit to purchase a cheaper ice-cream push cart instead. I ordered this on April 1/06. Then, ‘in for a penny, in for a pound’, I reconsidered and re-ordered the Willy Dog cart. Both carts were to be shipped together for $200. May 10/06 the final order and bill was paid in full and Will guaranteed delivery by June 1/06--another empty promise. The cart still did not arrive. Some delays were due to various shoddy accounting/paperwork on their part.
Will became evasive: I was put on hold, calls were not returned, and I did not receive an itemized copy of the bill. When I did get through, promises were made to send me one. Still no carts arrived on the promised date. A phone call revealed they still had not yet put the cart together and they guaranteed to have them to me on June 8/06 by 10 pm for a $200 delivery charge. The cart was delivered to me on June 9/06 for $873 incl. insurance - uncovered and unrated on a pickup truck, visibly in rough shape: warped panels, pitted, gouged, paint chipped, scratched, and noticeable damage to two spots. It looked as though a used cart was cobbled together and substituted.
Missing parts included umbrellas for both carts. A few weeks later the umbrellas finally arrived.
-Inadequate operating parts: cooler with one Styrofoam piece for insulation; heating system not separated from exposed wiring; tabletop steamer cannot adequately heat up wieners.
-Safety concerns: no bracket to keep a copper propane line from rubbing against steamer; no sealer rings on pipelines to keep from rubbing on metal. Water jug cannot be drained or removed for cleaning.
-Warped panels on storage doors that won’t stay closed. Locks appear to be installed upside down. No fitted cover to protect it while in transit. No automatic igniter as stated on instructions.
-Tail lights on trailer not hooked up; however I was provided wiring harness to do it myself. No locking brakes to keep cart stationary. Hubs on wheels are plastic, not full, round metal discs we were shown and ordered. Trailer wheel is bent and wobbles.
Various other minor parts are missing.
I was told my complaints were 'unique'. Their one year warrant explicitly states and implies “Should your cart fail for any reason due to workmanship or material defect... we will fix it free at your location. No arguments.”
Will Hodgkiss said to send back the cart and offered $300 compensation, and missing items would be forwarded ASAP. He also said he’d have someone call to repair the steamer. No one ever called. I received a cover on July 4th that did not fit. They wanted me to take the cart to Kingston Ontario to be repaired without any guarantee of a return date. I finally did receive my umbrellas in July. Various other parts were paid for but never received.
All this for $12,000!
My last contact with Will Hodgkiss was July 19/06 when I left several messages on both his phone numbers but he never returned the calls.
If anyone else has similar complaints that have not met with satisfaction please email me at and together we should try to get some satisfaction.
This is from the Chamber of Commerce in Kingston, Ontario disputing Mr. Hodgkiss' claim:
We regret to learn of your problems with Mr. Will Hodgkiss of Willy Dog Ltd, unfortunately, we only have information regarding their business location etc. Currently this Chamber has no relationship, association or contact with Willy Dog Ltd, Carts of Canada or Mr. Will Hodgkiss.