Just Dog People offers a superior customer
experience and a range of services and
products to keep shoppers and their pets
more than satisfied.
Jason Ast, co-owner with wife Katie Ast of Just Dog People in Garner, N.C.
Years in business: 2
Type of business: brick-and-mortar
Special services offered: self-service dog wash; full-service grooming; Drop and Shop service where cus-
tomers’ dogs are bathed in an hour or less; drop-in nail trimming, nail
grinding, anal expression and ear cleaning; group training classes: beginner, intermediate and tricks;
custom harness fitting section; food consultations; allergy testing
All Things Dog
Extras such as
dog wash stations
and more keep
back to Just Dog
PHOTOS COURTESY OF JUST DOG PEOPLE
True Leaf Medicine
in Vernon, British
has appointed DR.
DVM, as the founding chair of its
veterinary advisory board.
Kramer is the medical director
at the VCA-Canada Vancouver
Animal Wellness Hospital and
has been practicing veterinary
medicine for 16 years. She became
interested in alternative treatment
early in her career, blending herbs
and acupuncture with Western
medicine to promote optimal
As chair of True Leaf’s veteri-
nary advisory board, Kramer will
recruit veterinarians from around
the world to join True Leaf as the
company develops legal and safe
medicinal cannabis products for
pets. She and her colleagues will
be instrumental in the research
and development of cannabidiol
(CBD) pet products at True Leaf,
including the design and exe-
cution of supportive trials and
the development of education
programs for veterinarians and
pet owners on the best use of
cannabis products for pets.
Pet has hired
RIGGLE as its chief
operating scientist. He has been
involved in medicinal cannabinoid
research for alternative pain relief
for several years. With experience
from his Master of Science in envi-
ronmental chemistry and Bachelor
of Science in biology, he has taken
on the responsibility of developing
quality products from hemp-based
Most recently, Riggle was an
Pet Product News: What are the top-sell-
associate professor of chemistry in
the department of chemistry and
biochemistry at his alma mater,
ing products in your store right now?
Jason Ast: In our store, we sell a ton of
West Paw and Benebone products. So
many of our clients are looking for tough
toy options, as well as toys that help “
distract” dogs from destructive behavior
PPN: What are your favorite products
Ast: We’ve seen great results in the new
DOOG (Dog Owners Outdoor Gear)
belts and bags for dog owners. They have
great quality as well as great color and
design options—and all at a great price.
PPN: What industry trends have you been
keeping your eye on most closely?
Ast: We’ve really had our eye on how
PPN: What business challenge are you
many manufacturers have backed the
smaller retail stores since PetSmart’s
acquisition of Chewy. MAP pricing
has helped level the playing field for
stores like us, as well as great companies
like Tuffy’s, Champion Petfoods and
Fromm showing support for us.
currently in the process of tackling?
Ast: Keeping our staff trained and up-
PPN: What business goal are you hoping
to-date is an ongoing challenge for us.
We don’t want, and will not hire, “wall-
flowers.” Our approach to business is:
service first. That means no 17-year-olds
on their phone at the register. We want
to work with people who believe in our
ethos, “Give the customer a better experi-
ence than they expect,” which is Just Dog
People’s rule No. 1. Rule No. 2 is “Make
it right for the customer.”
We believe in community, small busi-
ness, hiring young people and giving
them experience to help them in their
future lives, and, most important, we be-
lieve in relationships over transactions.
to achieve this year?
Ast: We are very excited about our
new harness fitting service and food/
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