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8 Bars That Will Have You Sitting Up for a Treat

Get inspired with these examples.

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WHO DOESN’T LOVE a treat bar?

Customers appreciate being able to buy by the treat, weight or fill-a-bag size. Such flexibility lets them try different kinds without having to invest in full packages.

“They can take as little or as much as they want, and never have to worry about being stuck with a bunch of treats their dog doesn’t like,” Kelly Price, owner of Tail Waggers in Cadiz, KY, points out.

Stores see increased sales from the central display.

“Often people come in for one type of treat, but end up buying several types because they are looking at them in one location,” Amy Schiek, owner of Lucky Dogs in Skaneateles, NY, says.

Adding a treat bar also lets owners take merchandising to a higher level, with some designing their own fixtures or refinishing/refurbishing existing ones. Looking to follow their lead in this increasingly popular trend? Get inspired with these examples.


Lucky Dogs SKANEATELES, NY

In 2017, Amy Schiek added a store to her pet sitting and mobile grooming business. She made sure to have a treat bar in place on opening day.

“It’s fun for people to mix biscuits and see the various chews outside of plastic packaging,” Schiek says.

She worked with a creative contractor to build the wooden bar, which features bone-shaped legs and dog silhouettes on each end. Galvanized buckets hold Earth Animal and Barkworthies chews, and best-selling Pawduke treats.

“Our customers love them. We carry three grain-free flavors and three wheat-free flavors. The cards below each bucket list the ingredients and nutritional details, which is helpful when people also want to know the protein content.”
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Miss Doolittles Pet Spa POTTSVILLE, PA

Missie Mattei bought a china cabinet online and gave it a makeover to create the treat bar at her grooming salon. Painted lavender with purple crackle accents, she fills it with specialty items from Pawduke, Claudia’s Canine Bakery, The Lazy Dog Cookie Co. and Preppy Puppy Bakery.

“I have grain-free,” she says,” wheat-, corn- and soy-free, and then treats that are just too cute for words.”

Mattei added the bar in 2017 and has been thrilled with its success.

“The response has been amazing. I now have shoppers who are not grooming clients stopping in for favorites or the latest thing on the treat bar.”

She recommends bargain shopping at thrift stores for stands and platters, and even using family heirlooms to add a personal touch.

“I was able to incorporate pieces from my grandmother. She was a great cook and a huge dog lover. She would have loved my treat bar.”


The Mane Pup AUBREY, TX

To complement the rustic chic decor of her grooming salon, store and boarding facility, Stacy Smith created a treat bar in 2017 using antiques: a refurbished dresser, plus jars and trays in different sizes and shapes. Placing the bar, stocked with everything from beef sticks to peanut butter biscuits, near the entrance has proven a success.

“It’s the first thing people see when they walk in and the last thing they see before they leave. It makes a good impression, and I sell lots of treats!”
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Flying M Feed Co. HOUSTON, TX

The birdseed bar at her pet-supply store proved so successful, Trace Menchaca replicated the rustic design for dog treats in 2017. She fills the bins with Wet Noses products.

“It’s one of the best parts of our store. Customers love it, and it totally boosted sales,” Menchaca shares.

She says the bar does have a downside.

“Our store dog, Kee, gets a treat every time a customer goes to the bar. She went from a white Lab to a polar bear!”


Tail Waggers CADIZ, KY

To create the treat bar for her grooming salon, owner Kelly Price and her husband, Dustin, repainted a set of cabinets, added plastic food bins and sewed a canopy in 2016. Offerings rotate regularly, and she says the most popular are those from Pawduke and Claudia’s Canine Bakery that look like human treats.

“Our carob chip cookies, animal crackers and old-fashioned fork-pressed peanut butter cookies sell out on a regular basis,” Price says. “They look and smell good enough for us to eat!”


K-9 Bath & Body NESQUEHONING, PA

Elizabeth Lisella added multiple treat bars within her grooming salon and store in 2017. Treats — from Bare Bites, Le Petit Treat and other bakeries — and chews sit atop custom-made bone-shaped nesting tables and in a refurbished hutch. Like many owners, she uses easily updated chalkboards for signage. A This & That Snack Station adds to the offerings.
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The General Store COLLINSVILLE, IL

Cory Giles takes a different approach with his pet-supply store’s treat bar: He fills it with free samples.

“I’ve set up a sample bar in our checkout area so customers can help themselves to samples, and see and smell the treats. Several of the treats we stock, most notably the Soft Bakes line from K9 Granola Factory, really sell themselves once you open the package because they really smell great,” he says. “We are seeing a huge uptick in treat sales by offering samples.

“The psychology of giving samples like this is interesting as we’ve seen quite a few people that, when offered a sample, don’t take a sample but instead just purchase a package of treats.”


Razzle Dazzle Doggie Bow-Tique  KANKAKEE, IL

Razzle reigns over the treat bar at her human’s store, thanks to a large portrait that hangs above. Simple cubed bookcases hold metal buckets filled with chews from Canine Butcher Shop, Jones Natural Chews, Earth Animal and Whimzees. Atop the bar sits a raw bar from Vital Essentials.

Owner Jodi Etienne says the bar itself boosts treat sales, but that “The Vital Essentials neon sign also attracts attention.”

Pamela Mitchell is the senior editor at PETS+. She works from her home office in Houston, TX, with Spot the senior Boston Terrier as her assistant.

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Haul Out the Holly — and Maybe Even Yoda — for Snappy, Happy Holiday Decor

For a snappy, happy ever after, get those decorations up now.

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IT’S THE MOST wonderful time of the year. Customers are picking out gifts, and booking extra grooming appointments and boarding stays. Best of all, you get to deck the halls to further boost the holiday cheer and spending. These pet businesses shared how they do exactly that.

Southern Barker
LEXINGTON & LOUISVILLE, KY

On any given day, Southern Barker looks pulled from the pages of a decorating magazine. The holidays are no different. Special touches like the countdown calendar pickup truck and faux snowballs add festive charm to displays, those of holiday and non-holiday products alike.

Paddywack
MILL CREEK, WA

How sweet is this giving tree? Customers are able to purchase an item off the tree for a specific forever foster or adoptable pet, with the lineup changing each year with the organization. White tinsel and snowflakes also decorate this store, with Christmas and Hanukkah items adding pops of color throughout.

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The Dog Store
ALEXANDRIA, VA

Forget the Grinch! The Dog Store favors another green creature, Yoda, in one of its holiday displays. Making an appearance in the front window are Santa Snoopy and seemingly every single holiday dog toy on the market. Passersby can’t help but stop to take it all in, and then head inside for more.

Wagging Tails
WEST HARTFORD & WOLCOTT, CT

Pet-centric holiday paintings are a running theme in the lobbies of these boarding facilities. Santa holds a puppy, giving him a candy cane to lick. A kitten plays with ribbon on a wrapped gift. And a Westie looks out a snow-dusted window, with a Christmas tree in the background. All creating a merry mood for clients dropping off their pets.

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Bark On Mulford
ROCKFORD, IL

Festive items mix with year-round gifts to give both categories a boost during the holidays. Dog breed ornaments decorate Bark on Mulford’s Christmas tree, along with those representing other pets.

Paws on Main
COLUMBIANA, OH

This store took full advantage of last year’s town Christmas parade theme: ugly sweaters. It devoted the front window to holiday sweaters for pets, and threw a Snuggly Paws and Ugly Sweater Party. Not only did Paws on Main sell a slew of sweaters, it won the Best Dressed Animals Award at the parade!

Woof! Woof! Pet Boutique & Biscuit Bar
BRISTOL, RI

Treats remain a priority during the holidays at this store, with the famous biscuit bar and bakery cases getting a festive makeover. And look at the bone-shaped tree lights and garland with moose ears. Adorable.

Captivating Canines
WESTERVILLE, OH

This store takes part in its neighborhood’s annual storefront holiday decorating contest. White twinkle lights hang from the awning, helping to light the window displays that feature festive holiday decor. Good luck this year!

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6 Pet Hotels That Will Make You Kind of Wish You Were a Dog

This is high-end boarding for dogs!

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AT FIRST GLANCE, you might think some of these accommodations are for people. But look closely — at the size of furniture at Chateau Poochie, the water bowl at Yuppy Puppy and the video-chat camera at Bark Life Market. This is high-end boarding for dogs! Also, the pups in other pics give it away.

Wagging Tails
WOLCOTT & WEST HARTFORD, CT

Wagging Tails Pet Resort & Spaw has staffed cage-free boarding with toddler furniture as lounging and bedding options. Among the playful offerings are a pirate’s ship, racecar and train.
Krista Lofquist buys Little Tikes and Step2 beds new, but also finds them gently used on Facebook Marketplace.

NIGHTLY RATES: $50 (includes daycare)

Yuppy Puppy
O’FALLON, MO

Each of the Plaza Suites at Yuppy Puppy pet spa and resort features a tempered-glass door, garden-view window and outdoor fenced-in area for suite guests only, plus raised bed, couch and included amenities such as bacon-and-egg brekkies in bed.

Jessica Cooke expanded boarding options to include suites when moving to her current location. “I was quite nervous that I would end up upgrading dogs for free to utilize the space. But the suites are full every day, and I have clients booked in them into 2020. We are opening a second location, and the rooms will primarily be these.”

NIGHTLY RATES: $55

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Barker’s Lane
DAVIE, FL

Grooming clients can also board at this salon, in one of four stylishly appointed rooms worthy of an Instagram-famous pup.
Julianna Reese offers this advice for those inspired to use similar decor. “You have to know the dogs to determine what can be left in the room. We do put down pee pee pads at night, but the rugs and bedding are washable and bought at places like Ross, Home Goods, Tuesday Morning.”

NIGHTLY RATES: $45 and higher

Bark Life Market
SEMINOLE, FL

The all-inclusive Penthouse at Bark Life Market’s newest resort measures 10 by 13 feet and includes sliding patio door, resort decor and music, a queen-size bed and flat screen with DogTV, as well as private web cameras and a Petchatz video chat and treat dispenser. Also included, egg and cheese omelet for breakfast, salmon or beef fillet for dinner, and tuck-in treat at bedtime.

NIGHTLY RATES: $99

Chateau Poochie
POMPANO BEACH, FL

This doggie day care, spa and pet hotel has multiple levels of accommodations, including its most luxurious: The Tea Suite. Measuring 14 by 14 feet, it has seating and sleeping options throughout, a crystal chandelier, flat-screen TV and webcam, plus additional included amenities.

NIGHTLY RATES: $250, and pet parents can pay an additional fee to have a staff member spend the night in the suite.

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Wag Central
STRATFORD, CT

At Wag Central, staffed slumber parties are one of the higher-end boarding options. Pre-screened day-care regulars can stay together in a room that has four custom-made bunkhouses. Angela Pantalone says they cost about $800 each, including beds.

“It’s a great upsell for pups who are anxious or first-time boarders. The human-interaction aspect is a big draw for owners who are concerned about their pup as they travel, too.” She adds, “We are able to multitask the use of this room for dog families who insist on keeping their pups together when we are not opening it to sleepovers. It’s a nice puppy nursery, too, for daycare. Overall, it’s been a hit!”

NIGHTLY RATES: $68 (includes daycare)

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Tout Your Own Brand with Custom Merchandise, Branded Freebies

Swag those tails!

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WHO DOESN’T LOVE SWAG? Offer up a free button or ball or other small promotional item, and your customer will say, “Yes, please” and “Thank you.” Some even love your business so much they’ll pay to wear or use its branded products. Now that’s success — revenue and “free” advertising. These six businesses have achieved exactly that.

Fetch RI
RICHMOND, RI

Humans and dogs alike can show their love for this store — in a variety of T-shirts, sweatshirts, hats and bandanas. Johnna Devereaux offers this advice, “People love buying our shirts and sweatshirts because they are super-comfortable. Work with your local embroidery shop and have them order samples so you can decide which materials feel the best, and carry only those!” As to pricing, she says, “Because we are getting free advertising when people wear our branded items, we only charge a 25 percent markup.”

T-SHIRT COST: $13, SWEATSHIRT COST: $35, HAT COST: $12, BANDANA COST: $4.50, DOG T-SHIRT COST: $8 | SOURCE: Local embroidery and screen-printing shop

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Crossbones Dog Academy
PROVIDENCE, RI

New training clients get their very own clicker to use, not only during class but when out and about practicing new skills. When hung from a wrist coil, they serve as walking advertisement for the business. Katherine Ostiguy says, “Branded clickers are worth the investment if your store offers positive dog training services.” She also sells them for $3.29.

COST: $1.15 | SOURCE: The Doggone Good Clicker Company

Cats Exclusive Veterinary Center
SHORELINE, WA

In their welcome packet, new patients get a three-step can lid with the clinic logo on it, and they also are available for $1.39 at the on-site store. Manager Amanda Bass says, “Carrying can lids when you sell dog and cat food is a must! Merchandise them near the canned foods as well as by the checkout stand.”

COST: $.049 | SOURCE: Pawprint Promotions

Animal Connection
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA

Branded merchandise at this store features its tag line, “Bark Local.” Patricia Boden sells T-shirts, toys and magnets, but also gives them away — along with “Bark Local” and “Purr Local” buttons — at certain events and to valued customers. She even rewards those who wear the gear: “If I see someone wearing a pin or shirt, or a car with a magnet, they get a prize on the spot!”

SHIRT COST: $14 SALES PRICE: $20 SOURCE: VistaPrint | TOY COST: $9.50 SALES PRICE: $16.99 SOURCE: Hugglehounds | MAGNET COST: $1.50 SALES PRICE: $3 BUTTON COST: $0.44 SALES PRICE: $0 SOURCE: Sticker Mule

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Wishbone Pet Care
MISSOURI CITY, TX

Tammi Bui worked with an Etsy artist to create a custom, hand-painted dog collar with brand colors and logo. She sells them for $22.99, but also gives them as gifts to her most loyal customers.

COST: $11 | SOURCE: etsy.com/shop/merryjaneandthor

Yuppy Puppy
O’FALLON, MO

Jessica Cooke says, “I smack my logo on anything I can!” Some items she gives away, such as bandanas to new grooming clients, but uses others as incentives. Customers who book a 30-day play-camp package for $515 get a free towel they can use on Splash Days, and those who buy a filled treat jar for $6 can refill it for $3. “We also use these in our donation gift baskets, with a note telling them to keep the jar and come see us for a refill!”

TOWEL COST: $11, TREAT JAR COST: $2.50 | SOURCE: AnimalsINK

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