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American Pet Professionals Welcomes New Members

Record numbers of pet businesses join American Pet Professionals in 2018.




(PRESS RELEASE) BABYLON, NY – A record number of new members have joined American Pet Professionals since early 2018 and have continued to do so throughout the year. New members represent startups in the pet technology and pet app space as well as many new pet product manufacturers, financial services for pet businesses, pet sitters, pet media and pet organizations. Since its inception in 2009, American Pet Professionals has always allowed pet professionals from all areas of the industry to join.

“Our organization has grown tremendously this year, with so many new types and categories of members in the pet industry from all around the country. I absolutely love seeing what our members have created as a businesses and animal educational organizations alike. I am thrilled to announce our new members and encourage everyone to visit their websites on our Membership Directory and learn more about what they do,” said Nancy Hassel, president and founder of American Pet Professionals. “I am excited to welcome each new member, help them with their business goals, referrals, connections, questions and look forward to working with them in 2019!”

New members include:

Pet Technology and Pet App Companies:

  • Jason Hanny of the Pet Connect App, which is a free pet owner app that connects them with pet businesses making it easier to find the resources they need. And it gives pet businesses a way to meaningfully engage current and new clients with easy-to-use targeted marketing, custom-built profiles and more. Jason is based in Arlington, VA, and is VIP member.
  • Siva Marimuthu of RV PetSafety, which is a pet technology and app based product that monitors the pet’s environment and temperature and alerts you when they are in danger. Created for people that travel with their pets in RV’s and cars. Based in Palo Alto, CA and are VIP Members.
  • Casey Isaacson of DigDates, the Dog Person’s Dating app that launched in February of this year and helps connect dog people based on what’s most important to them when it comes to dating. It was built by sisters, Casey and Leigh Isaacson who are based in New York, NY and New Orleans, LA.
  • William Loopesko of PuppTech, which is brand new pet product that detects the temperature and humidity, has a built in microphone, GPS, wireless connectivity and will alert pet parents by text via the app on their smartphone if their pet is in danger. The device can be used in car, boat cabin, anywhere you’re traveling with your pet and even provides a safety feature showing passers by that the pet is safe. Pupptech is based in Denver, Colorado.
  • Lars Rissman of the Groomit App, which is an app that pet parents can get pet grooming on demand with certified pet groomers at the time they request and in their own home. Currently servicing New York City, northern New Jersey, Westchester, Connecticut and San Diego. Groomit is based in New York, NY.
  • Lowell Kaufman of Well Informed Pet app, which is a pet app revolutionizing the pet health industry by offering easy access to a pet’s health information. Based in New York, NY.

Pet Product Manufacturers:

  • Gay Jensen, owner of Golden Wellness Dogs, which makes turmeric products for dogs, which help prevent, join inflammation and provides healthy immune support. Gay is a VIP Member based in Manchester Center, Vermont.
  • Immacula Pierre, CEO of Iconic Paws which is a pet product manufacturing company that offers natural and healthy treats and supplements for dogs. VIP Member based in Woodbridge, VA.
  • Jim Umlauf and Brian Devening of 4KNines who make premium car seat covers built by dog owners for dog owners. Engineered to out perform and outlast other covers on the market. 4KNines donates a percentage of each sale to animal advocacy groups. VIP Members and based in Oklahoma, OK.
  • Zsolt Sapy, COOof Smoke Alarm Monitoring an affordable, wireless solution to monitor your family and pets and property in the event of a fire. Keeping your pets safe even when you are not home! Visit their website to see how this incredible technology works. Zsolt is a VIP Member and based in NY.
  • Zel Crampton the CEO and founder of Diggs which just launched a brand new line of pet products including the ‘best crate ever’ raising the standard of living for dogs everywhere. Based in Brooklyn, NY.
  • Gretchen Mannix of South Fork Pets who make handmade dog treats, with healthy, wholesome and all-natural ingredients that are locally sourced in the Hamptons, NY.
  • Shane Whelan of Pet Containment Systems and PetFenceology, which is a proposal and automation software designed to help pet fence companies grow and harmonize they way they do business. VIP Member based in Milford, MI.
  • Sherri Davis, CPO of Amuse Pooch, wholesome, artisan dog treats made with single ingredients. Made in the USA and based in New York, NY.
  • Michael Caruso of Raptor Shield, which is a armor like vest for dogs to protect against birds of prey picking attacking and picking up a small dog. It is the only product on the market to protect dogs from hawks, raptors and other birds of prey. Based in River Grove, IL.

Veterinarian/Pet Medical Supply:

  • Stella Kim Founder and CFO of MixLabRX, which is a compounding lab that works with pet owner’s veterinarians to make personalized pet meds for their pets. Based in New York, NY.

Pet Retail/Ecommerce:

  • Corey Abramowitz, Founder of BarkYours which is the online destination to by and sell unique and beautiful dog-themed gifts and crafts online. BarkYours just launched this year. Corey is based in New York, NY.
  • Marshall Morris COO of iHeartDogs that is a manufacturer and online distributor of products for pets and the people that love them. They partner with their customers (1 million to date) on every product to make a big impact in shelters. With that support they have provided 10 million meals to shelters, 100,000 toys and much more. Based in Anaheim, California.


  • Lauren Collier of Lauren’s Crazy Pet Show, a media company that travels covering pet news and showcasing pet businesses, animal rescues, pet events and much more. Lauren was a TV anchor for many years on News 12 Connecticut. She is based in Shelton, CT.

Pet Health:

  • Arden Moore of Pet First Aid for You a Pet Health and Safety teaching pet parents and professionals about pet health, safety, first aid, CPR and more. Arden also hosts the popular pet podcast Oh Behave! Arden is based in Houston, Texas.
  • Anastasia Kvyatkovskaya Founder of DogHauz. Anastasia is a K9 Fitness Coach and Nutritionist offering canine wellness coaching for pets using dog training and exercise, healthy eating made at home and much more! Anastasia is based in New York, NY.
  • Lindsey Campbell, Co-Founder and VP of TEEF! Daily Dog Dental Care. TEFF is a plant based prebiotic that outsmarts the bacteria in your dog’s mouth – including the bad bacteria that forms plaque, creates gum disease and attacks teeth. TEEF! uses nontoxic nutrients that wash over their teeth and gums every time they drink their water, creating a healthy and fresher-smelling mouth. Product launching in Q1 in 2019. Based in Minneapolis, MN.

Graphic & Website Design:

  • Kaila Piepkowof Dox Design is a design and development studio that focuses on creating compelling designs for pet-friendly and pet-focused businesses. VIP Member based in Grand Rapids, MI.

Pet Sitting & Dog Walking/Boarding:

  • Liz Freitag Owner of Peninsula Pups Doggie Daycare, the leader in the market of dog daycare for Erie’s canine community. We provide a safe and stimulating environment in which dogs can socialize, exercise and just be dogs in their natural state as a pack. They offer many services and pet products at their location based in Erie, PA.
  • Heather Curatolo of Paws on Pine a five star rated dog walking, pet sitting and concierge servicing lower Manhattan, NY.
  • Florence Dixon Owner of In Home Pet Services of Westhampton Beach that offers pet sitting, dog walking and pet care services. Based in Westhampton Beach, NY.

Pet Event Organizers:

  • Leslie Kennedy, Director of Barking Beauty Pageant– that organizes and hosts one-of-a-kind competition for dogs, and beauty pageants that benefit animal charities & civic organizations. Founded 2006. Leslie is based in Westhampton Beach, NY.
  • Sonali Nigam of PetMinded Co., a pawfriendly concierge business offering pet parents services, pet education and pet-friendly events based in New York, NY.

Pet Friendly Organizations:

  • Beth Miller, Founder & CEO and Tom Everhart, CPO of WagTown. Wagtown sets responsible and genuine standards for the term, “dog friendly.” Our mission is to lead the movement to create a Wagtown® community for everyone. To do this, we advocate for dog-friendliness through research, consulting, leveraging big data, education, marketing, and empowerment. Based in Centerville, Ohio.

Financial Service Companies:

  • Steven Cron and Loren Shuman of Benchmark Payment Networks which provides electronic payments to merchants in all 50 states and many countries. They offer a comprehensive suite of products and services. Tailing credit card processing programs for the special business needs of financial institutions, independent sales organizations and agents and now also helping pet businesses. VIP Members based in Cold Spring Harbor, NY.
  • Jeri Ann Cook, Founder of Sunstone Bookkeeping a bookkeeping company that focuses on the finances for pet businesses so they can focus on their passion, taking care of animals. Based in Stratford, CT.

Non-Profit Organizations:

  • Sass Levine, Founder and Executive Director of DogAbility Center. DogAbilityCenter’s mission is to provide innovative canine-assisted experiences, using certified therapy dogs with skilled handlers, that afford comfort, inspiration, socialization, education and recreation to better the lives of people of all abilities in the community. Based in Syosset, NY.

In 2018, American Pet Professionals offered many new membership benefits to members, including free live learning events monthly on Facebook; accessible downloadable content; hosted events in various locations in the country; and information for pet professionals at every level to help their businesses, animal rescues or non-profit organizations. “In 2019 we have even more new membership benefits to be added, which we cannot wait to announce in the New Year,” said Nancy Hassel.

Membership dues are annual, with different levels to choose from for non-profit animal rescue and organizations, solo-entrepreneurs, and corporate businesses. Membership dues are increasing in 2019, so anyone interested in joining and becoming a membership should do so before Jan. 1.

For more information, go to To contact Nancy Hassel, call (631) 446-1105 or email





How to Make Your Advertising More Effective Over Time

Pet-business owners use lots of different methods for marketing and advertising, from direct mail to social media. But they often miss a crucial step, says marketing specialist Jim Ackerman. Very few businesses properly test and track their efforts. Jim explains that carefully monitoring your ads, and adjusting them accordingly, can dramatically improve your results.

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Press Releases

P.L.A.Y. Names Winners of Scholarship Competition

Claire Binfield from Las Vegas, NV, won this year’s competition.




(PRESS RELEASE) P.L.A.Y., Pet Lifestyle and You, has announced the winner of its sixth annual scholarship competition, Scholars Helping Collars. Each year, P.L.A.Y. awards one $1,000 scholarship to the student who best exemplifies the company’s core animal rights beliefs and who best describes, through an essay entry, the impact he or she has made on animal welfare in his or her community. Claire Binfield from Las Vegas, NV, won this year’s competition for her work with researchers on marine life preservation along with her role as a volunteer puppy raiser with Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Binfield has always been passionate about marine life, so in 2014 she self-funded a two-week Girl Scout Destination trip to Costa Rica and Panama to work with researchers on sea turtle preservation. During the trip, she participated in nightly beach patrols to protect sea turtles while they laid eggs, cataloged nests, evaluated unhatched eggs, and even helped release 100 hatchling sea turtles to the ocean. While in Panama, she also completed her open-water scuba certification, which will allow her to continue her work in marine life preservation.

In 2015, Binfield embarked on another Girl Scout Destination trip to Texas, this time for a 10-day marine science camp where she helped build and install monofilament fishing line recycle containers at a local pier. Through this volunteer work, Binfield also learned how providing the recycle containers allows fishermen to responsibly dispose of used lines and hooks that could otherwise harm the aquatic wildlife. Through both of these trips, Binfield solidified her desire to pursue a career in marine animal rescue and ocean preservation.

Binfield’s passion for animals has also extended into her role as a volunteer puppy raiser for GBD, a nonprofit providing free guide dogs to the visually impaired. Raising guide dogs opened her eyes to how service dogs can impact people’s lives through providing increased mobility and independence. This inspired her to create a social media awareness campaign, “Octaves Journey,” in order to provide schools and businesses with information about properly training service dogs and ADA accessibility rights.

“Claire’s passion for preserving and advocating for animals in her local community and around the globe is bound to impact the world in her future career as a Marine Biologist,” said Deborah Feng co-founder of P.L.A.Y. “Her drive inspired us to award her this scholarship and we are excited to watch her succeed as she begins her studies at Mitchell College.”

In addition to Binfield’s first place $1,000 prize, P.L.A.Y. also selected second and third place winners. Camille Hoffman from Carlsbad, CA, was awarded second place and will be receiving a set of 10 Warm Bellies Special Edition Chill Pads from P.L.A.Y. to be donated to the animal shelter of her choice — the NoWorriesMovement. Yasmin Ballew from Manteca, CA received third place — Ballew will receive a five-piece Garden Fresh plush toy set from P.L.A.Y. to be donated to the shelter of her choosing, Animal Rescue Tracy.

Winners were chosen from a pool of more than 370 applicants from across the country. Each essay was judged by P.L.A.Y. representatives using the following criteria:

• Compelling and engaging description of volunteer efforts and their impact on the personal life of the student

• Thematic consistency throughout the submission around the central thesis

• Proper spelling and grammar usage throughout the submission

To read Binfield’s winning essay, as well as the second and third place entries, visit

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Press Releases

NILodor Expands Distribution in Canada

It has teamed up with Anipet Animal Supplies.




(PRESS RELEASE) NILodor Pet Brands has teamed up with Anipet Animal Supplies to distribute NILodor’s Tough Stuff and Mossy Oak Active Outdoor Dog product lines in Canada.

Anipet will offer odor control products for the home and pet formulated products with NILodor’s proprietary Odor Eliminating Technology. Products include odor and stain eliminator, grooming shampoos and sprays, Tap-A- Drop, cat litter additive, and rug and room deodorizers.

“It’s our commitment and priority to ensure the success of brick-and-mortar pet retailers. Our partnership with Anipet Animal Supplies helps achieve this goal in the Canadian Market”, said Jamie Thomas, national sales manager of NILodor. Anipet brings more than 30 years of experience providing superior pet products to independent pet specialty store, groomers and veterinary clinics.

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Press Releases

NYC Re-tails & Sales Pet Expo Wraps Up, Sets 2020 Date

It is scheduled to take place Tuesday, May 12, 2020.




(PRESS RELEASE) On Tuesday, April 30, the seventh annual NYC Re-tails & Sales Pet Expo took place and had the best event turnout to date. Hosted once again by Nancy Hassel of American Pet Professionals and Dana Humphrey of Whitegate PR, more than 200 attendees from the New York City and surrounding areas joined together at Home Studios Inc. near Union Square Park for this one-day boutique B2B tradeshow.

In previous years, the NYC Retails & Sales Pet Expo was exclusive to media, pet retailers, groomers, veterinarians, social media and pet influencers. However, this year for the first time, the event opened the doors to the public for special pet parent hours. During the last two hours of the show, pet parents were invited to attend the expo to shop for the latest pet products, as well partake in a very interesting panel discussion regarding one of the pet industry’s fastest-growing trends: CBD and holistic pet care.

“Every year has been a success with the NYC Re-tails and Sales Pet Expo. However, this year, there was an energy and excitement that felt much different than ever before,” said Dana Humphrey founder and president of Whitegate PR. “Our vendors and attendees had fantastic feedback about the day, and allowing pet parents to join us gave the expo an added layer of fun!”

CBD, a non-psychoactive cannabinoid, has had a surge in popularity over the past couple of years for people and pets which is why the CBD market is expected to hit $22 billion by 2022, according to the Brightfield Group, cannabis industry analysts.

“Pet retailers are jumping on board to this massive trend, which is why Dana and I decided to add a CBD panel at this year’s show,” said Nancy Hassel, founder and president of American Pet Professionals. “Valuable and crucial information was shared at the discussion for both pet industry professionals and pet owners. It was the perfect way to close out the day!”

Attendees gathered around to hear from industry experts, all of which were exhibitors at the show, during two panel sessions CBD 101 and the Business Side of CBD and Hemp. Panels included: Angela Ardolino from CBD Dog Health, Craig Henderson from Fetch/Extract Labs, Matt Terrill from Innovet Pet, Min An from Buzzin and Dee Rivera of LATINISTA Magazine (as moderator). Panel session two consisted of: Dr. Bob Goldstein of Earth Animal; Damian Dalla-Longo of Bona Vida, Steven Cron Benchmark Payment Networks, Rob Kovler of Animal Nutritional Products, and Glenn Polyn from PET AGE Magazine (as moderator). During each panel, attendees learned about hemp regulations and how to carry this exploding new category in their stores. Veterinarians and experts crafting CBD in the USA were available for cautious pet parents and professionals to get their questions answered about this natural product that helps calm pets from anxiety and other ailments, especially prone problems for urban pets!

The vendor lineup included: Animal Nutritional Products, Benchmark Payment Networks, Bona Vida, Brutus Broth, Buzzn, CBD Dog Health, Don’t Forget Pocket Strap, Earth Animal, Emma Ko’s, Extract Labs/Fetch, Fairy Boss, Fluffygram, Green Coast Pet, Innovet Pet, NaturVet, NeVetica, Pet Smoochies, Pets Destiny, Ruffina, TwinCritters, Viachem, Wooftown’s brands: Baked Fresh and Home Cooked pet treats and food.

Mark your calendar for next year’s NYC Re-tails Sales Pet Expo, which is scheduled to take place Tuesday, May 12, 2020.

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