In the retail world, the major holidays are covered over and over. Isn’t it time you looked beyond the Christmases, Halloweens and Valentine’s Days and found some other holidays to celebrate? It’s time to think outside the box and look for ordinary things to celebrate throughout the year.

Last January, we celebrated National Squirrel Day in the store. We had tons of plush squirrel toys, two types of squirrel sweaters, collars and leashes, and even squirrel cookies. We arranged it all at the front of the store on our display table with a big sign, so when our customers first walked in they were met with a fun “holiday.” It worked! We got lots of talk about it (a great way to interact with the customers), sold some toys and a collar or two and definitely had fun with it. We also took a funny photo and posted it on social media with the hashtag #nationalsquirrelday.


CHECK IT OUT: COMPLETE LIST OF MORE THAN 300 PET-RELATED HOLIDAYS AND INDUSTRY EVENTS .


We also did quite well with National Donut Day in June, and even went so far as to purchase donuts from the best locally owned donut shop in town to give out free to our customers. We posted our event on social media in advance and used the hashtag #nationaldonutday and told folks we would have free donuts for humans and dogs (dog cookies from a bakery we purchase from). It was crazy, fun day and we even got a couple shares out of it on Facebook! We were hoping to cross-promote with the donut shop, but they are small and not on social media. That was OK, however. Their reputation is solid and the donuts were delicious!

This year, we decided not to celebrate the squirrels and chose to look at other animals or events we can do something with. We took a look at some of the toys we already have, especially the plush, and also the sweaters and collars, mainly to see if we would have enough product to make it look like a viable event. We also looked at what’s available in the marketplace to see if we can handle an event.

There are several websites that currently list what one site calls “weird” holidays. HolidaysCalendar.com lists everything from Epiphany to National Pie Day, so you shouldn’t lack for information on national, religious, and fun holidays. DaysoftheYear.com and TimeandDate.com will give you some pretty funny holidays that I can guarantee you didn’t know existed. Look out for ideas in each issue of PETS+ on the Calendar page (page 10 in this issue), and for a complete list of pet-related holidays (as well as industry events) put together by PetPR.com, check out ppmag.us/2018petcalendar

Stacy Busch-Heisserer owns Busch Pet Products, a holistic pet supply store, and recently opened Deer Creek Doggie Day Camp. She is currently working on a clinical pet nutrition certification through the Academy of Natural Health Sciences. Email her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


This article originally appeared in the March 2018 edition of PETS+.

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