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3 Types of Dog Treats to Play to Your Customer Base

Tailor your order to the tastes of your town.

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PEOPLE BUY dog treats that ping their own ideas of a treat: rich, greasy hunks of meat, buttery smooth salmon, sweet blueberries picked fresh from the bush. Think about the type of foods people are connected to in your area. Are you catering to a superfoods sect or living in open-faced sandwich country? See what people around you are eating, and pair it with your dog treat stock. 

Meat, Meat, Meat

Eat a hamburger in Hunter, ND, and someone will tell you the cow’s name. That’s how close U.S. farmers are to their beef, so if your customers have roots in making things grow, don’t be squeamish about playing up the meat angle to draw in new ones. Drop hot tips like dogs are historically carnivores and Australia’s most popular free-range protein for dogs is kangaroo.

Spike
Petcurean

Key Features: Jerky for dogs in duck, catfish and turkey flavors, loaded with nutrients and superfoods.

Sales Tip: Suggest flavors based on a dog’s personality, whether they’re spirited and sassy or playful and persuasive.

petcurean.com, (866) 864-6112

$10

Bisque Variety Pack
Tiki Dog Aloha Petites

Key Features: This variety pack gives dogs a new thrill at every bite. Will it be chicken, tuna, beef or pork?

Sales Tip: Tell customers it’s a good way to switch up the flavor routine without causing an upset stomach.

tikipets.com, (866) 821-8562

$13.08

Free Range Hops! Wild Hare Ears
Free Raised Pet Products

Key Features: Low-fat, high-protein and sourced all over the world, from primitive Patagonia in the Andes Mountains of Argentina to the grasslands of the Archipelago.

Sales Tip: Sell these exotic treats as your own through private label packaging.

freeraisedpetproducts.com, (586) 737-0797

$14.39

Fresh Tastes 

Health conscious places like Denver, CO, are full of active people who care about fresh vegetables and fit bodies. Treats that clearly read “all natural” or list their healthy ingredients are a hit here, even if “natural” can be a loose term. Promote the benefits of oils and omegas that keep dog coats shiny, plus freshening add-ons like sprays, tooth wipes and brushes.

Blueberry Honey Dog Treats
Cotton’s Cafe

Key Features: Healthy dog treats made from fresh farm produce, made with apple cider vinegar, honey, blueberries, oats and parsley.

Sales Tip: Tell busy customers these are the closest thing to making dog treats at home.

cottonscafe.com, (662) 380-1463

$14.99

Super-Premium Dog Treats
Blackwood

Key Features: These slow-cooked, super-premium treats are handcrafted with fresh, grain-free ingredients like catfish, chickpea and kale.

Sales Tip: Remind dog owners that the Omegas in the fish and coconut oils keep dogs silky.

blackwoodpetfood.com, (888) 843-1738

$14.99

Fresh Kisses
Merrick

Key Features: These all-natural dental treats feature a double-brush design that removes plaque and tartar while freshening dog breath.

Sales Tip: Stock up on Fresh Kisses for Valentine’s Day.

merrickpetcare.com, (800) 664-7387

$9.99 – $29.99

Balanced Plate 

A tried-and-true order is, of course, a sensible blend of fruits and vegetables. In Naperville, IL, meal planners get excited about chia, quinoa and flaxseed — safe and interesting add-ons to their classic recipes. If your store is situated in a spot that’s more suburban, look for sensible, quality blends of vegetables and meat with superfood extras to make them stand out.

Chewy Dog Treats
Superfoods

Key Features: A traditional blend of chicken and peas, plus vitamin-rich coconut infused with vanilla.

Sales Tip: Play up the rich, meaty texture of each bite.

solidgoldpet.com, (800) 364-4863

$4.49 – $8.99

Healthy Balance Line
Ethical Products

Key Features: Order up chicken strips, meatballs or BBQ treats, offset by healthy additions like kale, pumpkin, peas, green beans and quinoa.

Sales Tip: Sell the blend that addresses the issue at hand, be it joint health or digestion.

ethicalpet.com, (800) 223-7768

$7.99 – $16.99

Turkey Time
Einstein Pets

Key Features: Turkey dinner can come more than once a year in this natural and organic blend. Instead of stuffing, it comes with a side of banana.

Sales Tip: Superfood alert! Let customers know this low-cal treat is infused with chia seed.

einsteinpets.com, (727) 823-8233

$10

Since launching in 2017, PETS+ has won 16 major international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact PETS+'s editors at editor@petsplusmag.com.

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PETS+ Live with Candace D'Agnolo

This North Carolina Pet Business Thrives by Creating Unforgettable Customer Experiences

Catch the replay of this PETS+ Live! webinar hosted by Candace D’Agnolo of Pet Boss Nation. This episode featured Wendy Megyese of Muttigans in Emerald Isle, NC. Learn about ways to combat the big boxes and online — the key is to give your customers an experience they can’t get anywhere else — and learn why the business was honored in the 2018 PETS+ America’s Coolest Stores contest.

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Hot Sellers

Here Are August’s Hot Sellers

Pet Releaf leads this month.

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There is a toy company called FabDog, and their pizza toy is definitely the hot seller! It is a round disc that looks like a pizza, with a big squeaker inside, and comes in an actual pizza box! — Sandy House, The Store at Paws ’N Effect, Hamden, CT

  • Pets Global Zignature, Essentials, Fussie Cat. Great company, always available for education. Excellent sales rep: Andy Meese. — Greg Gorski, Cody Pet Depot, Cody, WY
  • Honest Kitchen Clusters $1.99 for a 1-pound trial size with a $5 off bounce-back coupon. — Jack Carey, Food for Pets, Manchester, NH
  • My Perfect Pet, gently cooked food. — Marilyn Texter, Pawsitive Karma, Castro Valley, CA
  • Pet Releaf continues to be a strong seller for us. I’ve scheduled in-store Pet Releaf demos on weekends to help boost product awareness. We’ve seen some trade-off between sales of grain and grain-free foods, with grain-free being down overall. — Keefer Dickerson, Nashville Pet Products, Nashville, TN
  • In prep for Fall we ran a BOGO special on Nummy Tum-Tum pumpkin cans. We gave customers ideas on how to add pumpkin to their dog’s diet to support overall digestive health and deliver nutrients in a fun way to promote mental stimulation. Many customers that may not have bought this product before, did — and they are coming back looking for it now that the special has ended! — Johnna Devereaux, Fecth RI, Richmond, RI
  • Answers Raw Beef 4-pound Detailed Formula Patties. (First time a raw food moved into the top spot.) — Janelle Pitula, Wags to Whiskers, Plainfield, IL
  • Himalayan PET SUPPLY’s JugHead’s were new to my store last month. When I brought them in I ran a promotion of Buy a JugHead, Get the Himalayan Cheese for Free. The promotion went great, getting a lot of the new toys in customer’s hands and have had a great return on customers returning for more cheese refills. — Taylor Gonzalez, Three Tails Parlor and Pantry, Columbia, IL
  • As always CBD. We sell Pet Releaf tinctures, capsules and treats. (Range: $21.99-$83.99.) I also sell a local CBD company called reLeaves from TSIGFY. (Range: $29.99-$259.99). Their product is for people and pets. I have customers from their 20s to their 80s coming to inquire and purchase these products. They love them because it changes their pets’ quality of life. From anxiety, pain management, arthritis/hip and joint issues, to even help with cancer symptoms (and so much more). The Pet Releaf has a loyalty plan just like most of the foods we sell (buy 10 get one free). ReLeaves is now working with Astro Loyalty too and soon will have a loyalty plan that we will be able to offer. It’s outstanding to be able to offer these plans to our customers. — Kimberly Gatto, The Wagging Tail, Las Vegas, NV
  • RedBarn bully slices sold in bulk were very popular with our visitors. Priced at 99 cents each, customers would buy several of each flavor as a quick and easy treat for their pups. — Wendy Megyese, Muttigans, Emerald Isle, NC
  • Heavenly Hounds – Customers really respond to a simple way to help their dogs with anxiety. We double expose it on the counter and with our other calming supplements. — Matt Brazelton, Four Muddy Paws, St. Louis, MO
  • Smallbatch freeze-dried treats flew off the shelves this month! — Katherine Ostiguy, Crossbones, Providence, RI
  • Primal Goat Milk pint and Fromm pet food. Fromm and Primal partnered for every bag of Fromm 12 pounds or more sold, the customer would get a free Primal Goat Milk. It was part of the Build a Better Bowl program. It worked; we are now selling more and more goat milk. — Paula Gorman, Pet Supplies ’N’ More, Muskego, WI
  • Our bundles are now a top seller in our boutique. After taking a training class in The Pet Boss Club a couple of months ago that was led by Doug Martin from Treat Planet, I applied the theory of bundling a few items at a set price to sell more of that item. We started with Bully Sticks and No Hide Sticks in groups of five, and our sales of these two items are up 18 percent since implementing. — Teresa Hogge, Belly Rubs N Suds, Ashburn, VA

What’s the Brain Squad?

If you’re the owner or top manager of a U.S. pet business serving the public, you’re invited to join the PETS+ Brain Squad. Take one five-minute quiz a month, and you’ll get a free t-shirt, be featured prominently in this magazine, and make your voice heard on key issues affecting the pet industry. Sign up here.

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Products

5 Products to Help You Do Business Better

Pets gazebo, boarding facilities and more…

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Gazebo Sweet Gazebo

Store pets deserve their own space, to curl up in at night and/or to take a break in during the day. ADVANTEK allows them to do exactly that in style with its Pet Gazebo. Available in four heights, six canopy colors, and with accessories for outdoor use, it also serves as a floor model, advertising the product.

$129.99 and up

advantekpet.com

Furry ‘Facetime’

Boarding facilities: Add use of a PETCHATZ HDX to your menu of services. This latest version of the two-way video chat system delivers better quality in low light, a wider camera angle, and improved streaming and Wi-Fi connectivity. Pet parents can also dispense treats and aromatherapy, play games, stream DOGTV, record and share videos, and even take calls from their pet via the PawCall button.

$349.99

petchatz.com

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Old-School Calendars

Yes, your POS system has a calendar, and so does your phone. But who doesn’t love to see a printed calendar hanging on the wall at their local pet business? QUARTO PUBLISHING’s Adorable Hedgehogs 2020 fits the bill and features 16 months of the cute critters. A must-have for stores that sell hedgehogs.

$14.99

quartoknows.com

For the Stylish Pet Stylist

Check out the Purple Galaxy Pulse ZR II Detachable Blade Clipper from ANDIS! The limited-edition tool features an eye-catching design on top of professional features such as its detachable blade design, five cutting speeds, and long-lasting removable battery that delivers three hours of continuous cordless clipping.

$518.40

andis.com

Brusha Brush Brusha

Grooming salons: Upgrade your teeth cleaning services with the Mira-Pet Ultrasound Toothbrush from TECHMIRA CORP. It uses gentle air oscillations to remove bacteria and tartar buildup, without the noise or vibration of traditional tools that may scare pets. Starter kit comes with single and three-sided heads, Ultrasound Toothpaste Gel and USB cord for recharging.

$239

techmira.com

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Cat Products

8 Cat Beds That Combine Comfort and Practicality

Because cats love napping and exploring!

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CATS LOVE NAPPING and exploring, so it’s no wonder that many feline beds pull double-duty, providing a place to curl up and sleep or a place to hide and pounce on unsuspecting pet parents.

2 in 1 Cuddler/Cat House

Messy Cats

KEY FEATURES: Collapsible design; easily converts from bed to house with pop-up roof, for a secure and private hideaway. Constructed using premium, heavy-duty upholstery, the peekaboo entrance folds down to convert to traditional bed.

SALES TIP: Non-slip base prevents shifting and keeps the bed in place.

messymutts.ca, (416) 644-1661

$49.99

Moccasin Cat Bed

Napping JoJo

KEY FEATURES: Handmade by the Amish in Pennsylvania for quality and a touch of craft. U.S.-made thick faux sherpa provides comfort and durability. Available in three colors.

SALES TIP: Inspired by cat’s obsessive shoe hugging behavior, cats can curl up and hide their heads under the “shoe flap.”

nappingjojo.com, (646) 407-8748

$92

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Cat Cave

Dr. Judy Morgan

KEY FEATURES: Cozy hideaways handmade in Nepal from New Zealand wool, an eco-friendly, chemical-free material. Breathable woolly comfort provides extra warmth in cool weather and air circulation in the summer, too.

SALES TIP: The whole cave is washable (gentle cycle), and then just reshape and air dry.

drjudymorgan.com, (856) 881-7470

$39.99

Cat Walk Luxury Lounger

Penn Plax

KEY FEATURES: Style and comfort meet value. Convenient handles and stabilizing feet for easy repositioning.

SALES TIP: Gone are the days of unsightly pet beds. The sleek, modern design blends seamlessly with any decor, which both pets and people will love.

pennplax.com, (866) 625-2385

$99

Felt Cubby Cat Shape Cutout Pet Bed

Furhaven

KEY FEATURES: Soft synthetic-wool fabric provides insulation and warmth, and is non-shedding and easy to clean. Sides zip together, to convert into open-top bed.

SALES TIP: Comes in six color options, and two styles: cat-shaped cutout opening or felt cat face appliqué.

furhaven.com, (888) 459-2337

$37.99 / $40.99

Seagrass-N-Burlap Square Bed

Ware Pet Products

KEY FEATURES: Cushiony comfort for contemporary cats: A modern look, made from soft woven jute and natural seagrass. Overstuffed pillow is removable for easy washing.

SALES TIP: The beds have an appealing aroma cats love (almost as much as catnip).

warepet.com, (602) 257-8803

$49.99

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Thermo-Basket Heated Pet Bed

K&H Pet Products

KEY FEATURES: A tisket, a tasket, kitty in a (heated) basket. The ultimate heated box for catnaps. Firm sidewalls and soft cushion filled with polyfill. Folds up for travel. Comes in two colors.

SALES TIP: The 4-watt heater is removable for all-season use and is MET Labs safety listed.

khmfg.com, (877) 738-5188

$89.99

Taco Meow Cat Bed

ShopMeoow

KEY FEATURES: Made of soft mop flannel and sherpa microfiber, well-padded and supersized for all types of kitties. Flexible wire in the trim holds taco shape or you can flatten it out like a tostada.

SALES TIP: Comes with three chili pepper catnip toys, to spice up any siesta.

shopmeoow.com, (435) 275-4536

$59

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