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July News Briefs

Posted: June 21, 2011, 6 p.m., EDT

BAND TOGETHER: 26 Bars & a Band, a Walnut, Calif.-based manufacturer of dog leashes and accessories, has inked a distribution agreement with Pet Palette of Woodbine, Md. The company has also signed with Fetch Partners, a sales and marketing team with offices in Seattle and Southern California. Fetch Partners will represent 26 Bars & a Band on the West Coast.

SALES REPS: Nekochan Enterprises Inc. of White Rock, British Columbia, Canada, has hired independent sales reps Susie Davis and Carolyn Talley to represent its Neko Flies toys in Colorado. Davis is based in Denver and has more than 15 years experience in the pet industry. Talley is based in Centennial, Colo., and has more than 10 years experience.

PETSITTING PARTNERS:, a website that connects pet owners with pet care professionals, has added Bark Busters, G’day! Pet Care and Out-U-Go! to its network of pet care providers. Bark Busters is an in-home dog training company, G’day provides in-home pet care services, and Out-U-Go provides dog walking and pet sitting services. Pet owners who visit the website and fill out an online form are contacted via phone or e-mail by local pet care companies in the network.

MARKETING MATCH: Castor & Pollux Natural PetWorks of Clackamas, Ore., has selected StruckAxiom to handle the national advertising campaign for its natural pet food and treats. As part of the agreement, StruckAxiom, which is has offices in Salt Lake City, Portland, Los Angeles and New York, will collaborate with Castor & Pollux on developing a new brand and digital strategy aimed at increasing product awareness and engaging consumers. Castor & Pollux’s pet food and treat brands include Organix, Natural Ultramix and Good Buddy.

FREE CONSULTATIONS: MassMedia Pet Marketing of Las Vegas is now offering free, one-hour marketing consultations to members of the national Pet Chamber of Commerce.

SUSIE SEAL: The Susie Homemaker Co., a Keller, Texas-based business that promotes quality consumer products in the home and garden marketplace, among others, has granted Sleepypod mobile pet bed the Susie Homemaker Seal of Approval. As part of the approval process, the Susie Homemaker Co. put the Sleepypod through one year of everyday usage. The product not only lived up to the claims advertised by its maker, Sleepypod of Pasadena, Calif., but it also exceeded expectations, said Susie McAuley, CEO of Susie Homemaker Co.

NEW CATALOG: Summit Chemical Co., a Baltimore-based manufacturer of pond treatment products and environmentally friendly pest controls, unveiled its 2011 product catalog in early May. The catalog features Summit’s entire product line, including its Clear Water barley straw planters and extract. It is available digitally.

LITTLE BIGGER: Little Gifts/, a provider of pet identification products and giftware, expanded its warehouse in Secaucus, N.J. The expansion adds more than 8,000 square feet of space to the existing facility for a total of approximately 12,000 square feet. The addition accommodates pallet storage, pick and pack, and sample management.

RECYCLING MILESTONE: Cycle Dog of Portland, Ore., reported in early April that it has reclaimed and transformed 10,000 pounds of bike inner tubes into dog accessories. Cycle Dog collects tubes from bike retailers in the Pacific Northwest, as well as from individuals and teams, to use in the creation of its dog collars and leashes. The company also uses valve stems for its point-of-purchase displays.

PROJECT BREATHE: Invisible Fence Brand, pet containment systems made by Radio Systems Corp. of Knoxville, Tenn., donated more than 1,000 pet oxygen masks to 30 fire departments in April as part of its Project Breathe initiative. Project Breathe was established in 2009 with the goal of equipping every fire station in U.S. and Canada with pet oxygen masks. To date, Invisible Fence Brand has donated more than 10,000 pet oxygen masks.

GIFT BAGS: OurPet’s Co. of Fairport Harbor, Ohio, reported in April that it donated $3,000-worth of its cat products in support of the Humane Society of the United States’ 25th Anniversary Genesis Awards. The awards program pays tribute to major news and entertainment media for producing content that raises the public’s awareness of animal protection issues. OurPet’s donated Cosmic Catnip and Play-N-Squeak at Night toys for inclusion in the award gift bags.

BEST OF: The Pet Spot of Norwood, Ohio, was named the No.1 dog daycare and No. 1 groomers in Cincinnati as part of City Beat newspaper’s Best of Cincinnati reader’s choice poll.

TEACHER’S PET: Town officials in Islip, N.Y., have renewed an agreement with the Dog Federation of New York to hold responsible dog owner classes for another year. The free three-hour classes, sponsored by Canine Fence, will continue to be held once a month in conjunction with the town’s animal shelter. They are designed to educate dog owners about basic puppy and dog behavior, training tools and techniques, children and dog safety, dog park etiquette, health and nutrition, and New York’s dog laws.

CELEBRITY JUDGE: Actress Whoopi Goldberg has joined American Humane Association’s Hero Dog Awards as a celebrity judge. The awards recognize rescue and other service dogs’ contributions to society. As a judge, Goldberg will select the American Hero Dog, to be announced in October, out of a pool of finalists chosen by the public.

DRUM DROLL, PLEASE: To boost traffic at the recent Atlanta Gift Show, Droll Yankees held a drawing offering for three prizes to retailers that stopped by their booth and filled out an entry form. The winners are Sandy Parr of Bird Barn & Gift Emporium in Cashiers, N.C. ($250 in Droll Yankees products), Karen Jennings of Audubon Workshop in Hodges, S.C. ($100 in product), and Scott Cook from Potting Shed in Chelsea, Mich. ($50 in product). Droll Yankees reported it is considering running the promotion at future shows.
Karen Jennings of Audubon Workshop won $100 of Droll Yankees product at the Atlanta Gift Show.

ISO CERTIFICATION: Hach Co./ETS of Elkhart, Ind., reports it has received ISO 9001:2008 recertification for all products it manufactures. The company, which first received the ISO certification in 1997, makes test strips for multiple applications, including pool and spa water, water gardens, garden soil and medical needs.
Caption:  Hach Co./ETS recently received ISO recertification for its product lines, including AquaChek Pool & Spa Test Strips.

PUPPY KIT: Nu BowWow LLC, which operates the e-commerce and social networking website for new puppy owners, reported in May that it will now include a sample of Peakwaggers dehydrated dog meals in its puppy starter kits. Other items in The Puppy Starter Kit include a collar and leash, water and food bowls, a chew toy, stain remover, and pet waste bags and bag dispenser.

BETTER BUSINESS: Vetionx, a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based manufacturer and online retailer of pet health products, is now Better Business Bureau accredited.

WEEKLY DEALS: Daily Kibble Inc., a publisher of a free e-newsletter and website for pet owners, began offering weekly deals on pet products in mid April. “DK Deals” are available exclusively to subscribers of Daily Kibble’s e-newsletter. In general, subscribers are offered 50 to 70 percent off pet products and services handpicked by Daily Kibble’s editors.

NEW VP: Anchorage-based Alaska Garden and Pet Supply, dba Alaska Mill & Feed, promoted vice president of sales and marketing Joel Klessens to president, the Anchorage Daily News reported. The company runs a wholesale pet and garden supply distribution business; operates a retail store; and manufactures pet food, fertilizer, ice melt and wild bird seed.

PRINCIPAL: Pawsch Inc., a Boca Raton, Fla.-based pet store operator and online retailer, has named Kevin McGovern a strategic advisor and principal. McGovern, who serves as chairman and CEO of McGovern Capital LLC, is expected to assist Pawsch in developing new markets and growing into a national franchise. Currently, Pawsch has brick-and-mortar locations in Jacksonville, Fla., and Dallas.

NEW SALES VP: Wholesome Pet Supplies, a Breckenridge, Col.-based distributor of dog toys and apparel, has promoted Mary McHugh from sales representative to vice president of sales. McHugh, who joined the company about a year and a half ago, is responsible for overseeing Colorado sales as well as the entire staff of sales representatives. Prior to joining Wholesome Pet Supplies, she served as a customer service manager with Aircell for 10 years.

PYRAMID: Pyramid Pet Products, the Las Vegas-based manufacturers of Tuscan Natural dog and cat food, hired Ronn Walthers as vice president of sales. Walthers brings more than 30 years of pet food sales and marketing experience to the company and most recently worked at Natura Pet Products, where he managed national, international and regional sales.

NEW SALES: Marshall Pet Products, a Wolcott, N.Y.-based manufacturer of small animal products, has added Stephanie Cimineri and Andrew Slusar to its sales team. Cimineri brings 11 years of customer sales and communication experience to the company. Slusar has four years of sales and marketing experience.

10 YEARS AND COUNTING: Six employees at Multipet, the Moonachie, N.J.-based manufacturer of Loofa Dog toys, have passed the ten year mark. They are Laura Bartlett, marketing and product development manager; Richard Koliner, vice president of sales; Carolyn Pennino, finance; Gayle Rossi, sales coordinator; Sergio Uribe, warehouse manager; and Leslie Yellin, executive vice president.

PANOS TWOFER: Zoo Med Labs Inc., a San Luis Obispo, Calif.-based manufacturer of fish, reptile and bird products, has named Matthew Panos 2010 Salesperson of the Year for the second consecutive year. Panos serves as the Central Western sales director, based in Northern California. He was recognized for his outstanding commitment to customers and after sale service.

BROCK ENTREPRENEUR: Brock Weatherup, CEO of Pet360 Inc., which operates, and, has been named an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2011 Award finalist for the Greater Philadelphia region. The Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards honor individuals who demonstrate extraordinary success in the areas of innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their business and communities. Award winners were expected to be named in mid-June.

PRATT WILDLIFE: The National Wildlife Federation, based in Reston, Va., selected Beth Pratt as its new California director to lead its programs in that state. Most recently, Pratt was director of environmental affairs for Xanterra Parks & Resorts in Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. The National Wildlife Federation is a non-profit organization whose programs include its Certified Wildlife Habitat program that encourages homeowners to provide in their yards wildlife essentials including food, shelter and a source of water.

PERRY SVP: The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has appointed Nancy Perry to the new position of senior vice president of government relations. In her new role, Perry will be responsible for the overall strategic and tactical direction of the ASPCA’s legislative efforts and public policy at local, state and federal levels. She joins the ASPCA from the Humane Society of the United States, where she served as vice president of government affairs.

CHOW CORRESPONDENT: Purina has named Andy Señor Jr. of New York as its first Cat Chow correspondent. As such, Señor will travel the United States and report on cat-related events and topics for Cat Chow’s websites, as well as interact with cat owners across the country. Señor was selected from nearly 3,000 cat owners who applied for the one-year position, which pays $50,000.

FAB FIVE: Natural Wellness Centers of America Inc. is celebrating five years of manufacturing and selling pet probiotics, most notably its Ultra-Pet Products Total-Biotics supplements. The company exclusively uses probiotic strains from Nebraska Cultures Inc, the creator and supplier of the DDS-1 strain of Lactobacillus acidophilus.


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