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Editor's Note

Community Support

We more than get by with a little help from our peers.




NO ONE SUCCEEDS alone. Each of us, whether through direct assistance or simply by existing in this industry, learns and grows with help from others. Business thought leaders and coaches as well as peers provide support for what we do and how we do it.

PETS+ exists to be a channel for that support, through our print magazine, website and social media. Fueling it all are the PETS+ Brain Squad and the PETS+ Facebook Community, with a combined membership of nearly 4,000 independent pet retailers and service providers. These generous business owners and top managers share with each other information and ideas — and also lend a sympathetic ear when someone has a particularly rough day.

With that in mind, we asked members to tell us where they most need help in their business. We then asked members who have found success in those areas to share their experience. We also turned to two of our to-go industry experts, Candace D’Agnolo and Lyn Falk.


You’ll find five common challenges indies face and actionable advice on how to overcome them in our lead story, “Help Given.”

But before you turn the page, let us tell you a bit about our cover model, Pippa. She belongs to Elaina Stanley of Three Happy Hounds in Fernley, NV. Elaina won a photo shoot and cover spot for her sweet pup in a random drawing we held of all 2022 Big Survey respondents. It may have been pure luck that Elaina won, but we couldn’t be happier as Pippa proves perfect for this issue.

You see, she needed a little help herself as a puppy. Pippa was born with a cleft palate, requiring tube feeding until she could undergo reconstructive surgery at 4 months old. Elaina adopted her soon after and helped her through rehab. We’re thrilled to have Pippa on our cover.

Five Great Tips From This Issue That You Can Do Today

  1. Create custom buttons featuring your customers’ pets. (Calendar, p. 10)
  2. Turn your checkout desk into a branded photo op. (To-Do List, p. 12)
  3. State price first, features second. (Tip Sheet, p. 58)
  4. Give your business a good sniff. (Lyn M. Falk, p. 60)
  5. Post an “All Pets Must Be Leashed” sign on the entrance to your store. (Real Deal, p. 62)



P.L.A.Y. Media Spotlight

At P.L.A.Y. — Pet Lifestyle & You — toy design is definitely a team effort! Watch PETS+ interviewer Chloe DiVita and P.L.A.Y.’s Director of Sales Lisa Hisamune as they talk about the toy design process, the fine-tuning that makes each toy so special and why every P.L.A.Y. collection is made with independent retailers top of mind.

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