PETSMART CELEBRATES MILESTONE STORE OPENING
PetSmart has reached a major milestone in its efforts to
expand its store footprint across North America by opening its 1,600th store in El Paso, Texas. In addition, the pet
specialty retailer, which has headquarters in Phoenix, recently opened its Casper, Wyo., store, marking PetSmart’s
presence in all 50 U.S. states.
The store in El Paso features nearly 18,000 square
feet of space and includes a Pinnacle Pet Nutrition
Shop, which is a new feature in all recently opened
“We are thrilled to celebrate this milestone with our
associates and the community of El Paso, Texas,” said Brian Amkraut, executive vice president, store operations,
services, supply chain and real estate, for PetSmart. “At a
time when the retail world is dramatically changing and
many retailers are closing stores, we are proud of our
POS SERVICE PROVIDER OFFERS MARKET INTEL
REPORTS THROUGH GFK PARTNERSHIP
Consumer insights expert GfK and point-of-sale (POS)
software provider Comp-Ware Systems have joined forces to give pet specialty outlets the information they need
to compete as online and grocery retailers claim growing
slices of U.S. pet retail sales.
Through the partnership, retailers using Comp-
Ware’s Darts POS management systems will have
on-demand access to GfK reports capturing pet spe-
cialty sales across the country. Stores will be able to
benchmark their performances against both national
and regional trends.
With GfK’s data, Comp-Ware clients can see how
their sales and pricing compare to industry averages,
which brands and products are succeeding for competitors, and which manufacturers and brands are
experiencing the fastest growth.
GfK, which has headquarters in New York, collects sales information directly from pet specialty retailers in 10 worldwide markets; in the U.S., its panel
represents more than 11,000 outlets. Christmas, Fla.-based Comp-Ware’s POS systems power stores in the
U.S. pet specialty and farm and feed categories.
“In today’s competitive market, POS gives retail-
ers an essential advantage, clarifying their performance
and profitability,” said Maria Lange, business director of
GfK’s POS tracking (pet) team. “Now, Comp-Ware cli-
ents can get our reports covering the complete U.S. pet
market baked directly into their POS systems. Outlets
can immediately see how their sales, pricing and shelf
setup compare to competitors in their region and across
the country. The result is a vastly more level playing
field, at a time when online retailers have huge data re-
sources to draw on.”
More than half of Americans ( 54 percent) have
a pet in their home, and the cost of that com-
panionship is impacting their finances, accord-
ing to a Harris Poll conducted by telephone for
the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA).
The survey found that, on average, U.S. pet owners
spend $1,560 per year on their pet’s routine care, which
includes feeding, grooming, boarding and scheduled
visits to the veterinarian, based on an average monthly
cost of $130. Considering that more than half of Americans have less than $1,000 in their savings, according to
a recent GoBankingRates survey, it seems that some pet
owners are sacrificing their own financial goals to cover
their pet costs.
“Owning a pet can be an incredibly rewarding experience, but it’s also a long-term financial commitment,”
said Greg Anton, CPA and chair of the AICPAs National
CPA Financial Literacy Commission.
Nearly a quarter of pet owners ( 23 percent) admitted
the cost of pet ownership is more than they expected.
Food, toys and routine care are foreseeable costs; however, there are additional expenses, such as emergency
medical care or boarding, that can arise without warning. If an emergency expense were to present itself,
three-quarters of U.S. pet owners (76 percent) said they
would make financial sacrifices to pay for it. Four out
of five (79 percent) said that they would stop eating at
restaurants, and two-thirds (67 percent) would give up
their vacation to pay for pet-related expenses if they were
in a difficult financial situation.
Three in five U.S. pet owners ( 61 percent) said they
would sacrifice their cable and TV streaming services to
pay for their pet expenses. A third of pet owners ( 35 percent) would even sacrifice their cellphone plan.
While saving money on cable and cellphone plans
could actually be advantageous, some U.S. pet owners
would take steps to help their pets that could negatively
impact their finances, according to the survey. A little
more than one-third ( 37 percent) said that they would
sacrifice contributions to their retirement account to
pay for pet-related expenses, putting their own future
financial well-being at risk. Additionally, one in four
U.S. pet owners ( 27 percent) would forego paying their
credit card bill to pay for their pet’s expenses, leading
to potential penalties, interest rate hikes and a lowered
Individual pet owners said that to pay for emergency
expenses, they would be willing to “give up everything
in the house,” their “quality of groceries” and even “cut
back on the amount of money spent on grandchildren.”
A few pet owners went all in, saying that they’re willing
to “give up anything” to ensure their pet is taken care of.
This Harris Poll was conducted by telephone in the
U.S. between Sept. 29 and Oct. 1, among 1,004 adults (502
men and 502 women aged 18 and over). Among the respondents, 526 identified as pet owners.
Are Willing to Make
Financial Sacrifices for
PET RELEAF EARNS
TRADEMARK FOR FULL LINE
OF CBD PRODUCTS FOR PETS
Pet Releaf has officially trademarked its brand, full product
line and slogan, “from seed to
sale, from plant to pet.” As a
pioneer in the industry for
cannabidiol (CBD)-infused pet
products, trademarking the brand was of the upmost importance, said company officials. Setting the standard in
both product quality and branding has always been a
top priority for the Littleton, Colo.-based company.
“We started the trademarking process for our logos,
product names and slogan, ‘from seed to sale, from plant
to pet,’ when Pet Releaf first launched as a company,” said
Chelsea Joyce, vice president of sales for Pet Releaf. “This
has been a long process, and we’re extremely proud to
have solidified and protected our brand name and prod-
Gaining trademark status is an extremely difficult task
in the cannabis industry, even for companies utilizing
only the hemp plant, officials said.
All of Pet Releaf’s products are made from CBD hemp
oil extracted from its certified USDA organic joint-venture
hemp farm in Eastern Colorado.
PLANET DOG FOUNDATION SETS DATE
FOR 2018 CHARITY GALA
The Planet Dog Foundation, the charitable arm of Westbrook, Maine-based Planet Dog, will host its second
annual Planet Dog Ball charity gala on April 7. The gala
aims to raise awareness and funds for the Hoyt Therapy Dog Program at Maine Medical Center (MMC) and
The Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital (BBCH).
With almost 30 trained therapy dogs and handlers,
the Hoyt Therapy Dog Program offers the calm and joy
of connecting with a loving animal to patients, staff and
families at MMC and BBCH. Although the handlers are
trained volunteers who donate their time to promoting
the well-being of patients and their families, there is
still a cost to operate and maintain the program.
Through the generosity of sponsors and patrons at
the 2018 Planet Dog Ball, The Planet Dog Foundation
aims to cover the cost of the Hoyt Therapy Dog Pro-
gram for at least two years, thus ensuring that patients
and families will continue to receive these much-be-
loved visits, said company officials. Various sponsor-
ship opportunities are available at planetdogball.com.
In its inaugural year, the Planet Dog Ball drew more
than 150 patrons, 20 canine companions and 11 sponsors for an evening of local food, fur, fancies and fashion to raise more than $80,000 for America’s VetDogs,
a national service dog program, and Maine-based K9s
on the Front Line, which provides Maine veterans with
trained service dogs free of charge.