Pet shop owner Tracey Robertson says she can now concentrate on running her business again as the business recovers from a fraudulent ‘slip and trip’ insurance claim.
Halifax man Asad Khan submitted a claim to insurance company Covea, saying he had slipped on a patch of water in Paw Prints pet store in Hipperholme, West Yorkshire in 2017. He made another claim against a discount store.
But CCTV camera footage exposed his attempts to make two fraudulent ‘slip and trip’ claims at the two Yorkshire shops.
Khan pleaded guilty to one count of fraud by false representation at Bradford Crown Court and a further count was taken into consideration. He was sentenced at Bradford Crown Court to 10 month’s imprisonment suspended for 18 months. He must also complete 60 hours unpaid work and was ordered to pay £940 in compensation costs.
“It's hard enough running any business, particularly retail, in this day and age but this incident took so much of our time and effort to ensure justice prevailed,” said Tracey, who owns the Paw Prints pet store business with Darren Bailey .
“There were certainly days when we wondered if it was all worth it because of the added additional stress to the day to day running of the business.
“When it came to renew our insurance because of the pending claim our premium increased and we were unable to shop around for insurance as no other company would cover us with a £20k claim in process.”
Co-owner Darren Bailey outside the Paw Prints pet store in Hipperholme.
Tracey can vividly remember the time when Khan entered her shop.
“It was fortunate that I was in the store at the time as I felt that the whole incident was wrong,” she said. “I remember feeling angry at the time and I stayed behind after closing the store to download the CCTV, and I said to one of the staff I am going to put this away safe and wait for the claim and I was right. I felt concerned every time the post came in.
“My gut feeling was it was a con and I was expecting the claim to come in. I think he thought we were a large chain with lots of money that would just settle the claim. We are a family business with four Paw Prints pet stores in West Yorkshire and have put everything back into the business to keep improving it and moving forward.”
Has Tracey learned any lessons following this whole matter?
“I wish I could say that the outcome has helped but it's hard to say that when we are simply a target for all sorts of criminal activity – shoplifting, credit card fraud, store vandalism, fake money etc. But we still do it because we love what we do. But you do find it hard to trust people.”
Purpose built to support health conscious pet parents
Pet Trade Xtra promotion
Pawfect Foods is a healthier living dog treat range in rude health, an innovation-based business targeting health conscious ‘pet parents’ who want for their four-legged friends the same healthful living choices that they themselves have access to...
Pawfect Foods is a healthier living dog treat range in rude health, an innovation-based business targeting health conscious ‘pet parents’ who want for their four-legged friends the same healthful living choices that they themselves have access to.
With one in four British dogs deemed clinically obese it probably won’t surprise you to learn that recent Royal Canin research highlighted that a third of dog owners share their takeaways/fast food with their pets, a ‘killing with kindness approach,’ that not only promotes obesity, heart disease and avoidable joint conditions whilst also storing up problems around digestive health, tooth decay and skin problems.
‘Pet humanisation’ has been the hot trend of recent years, however mimicking human-led trends needn’t be detrimental to your dog’s health.
Pawfect for example champions plant-based treats (Nature’s Munch, Doggy’s Brew…) not believing for a second that dogs are vegetarians but refusing to polarise dogs as single-track carnivores, knowing that an overt, meat-based diet can lead to all-manner of doggy ailments, from joint inflammation to debilitating gut acidity.
According to Pawfect Treats founder, Prash Partwardhan, "Occasionally substituting in the odd nutrient-rich vegetarian/herbal or calcium-rich dairy treat (Himalayan Cheese treat) will ensure your pet receives the right balance of nutrients, protein, carbs, fibre, fats and essential amino acids.
"We see our range as not only well-placed to refresh pet food aisles in supermarkets and independent pet food stores that have historically been dominated by predictable, convenience over taste mainstream offers, but also bring new momentum to the new gamut of dog-friendly venues (coffee shops, pubs, hotels, delis...).
"By championing best-in-class treats made with all-natural, human-grade ingredients, we enable retail outlets to charge a small premium which brings some much needed incremental value into the marketplace."
Pawfect Pet Foods is very proud of its no compromise mindset; be that the presence of an esteemed canine nutritionist in their new product development team, an unflinching commitment to human-grade ingredients OR a state-of-the-art BRC/ISO-22000 & HACCP compliant production facility, Pawfect is an ambitious business putting its best paw forwards. With year one sales close to £1m and a presence in 7 (and counting) European markets, Pawfect Foods is a health & well-being orientated operation that pet owners can trust.
For more information visit Pawfectfoods.co.uk
The current Pawfect Foods portfolio consists of: 7 easy-to-use beneficial brews (Doggy’s Cuppa), all natural chhurpi treats for dogs of every age and life-stage (Himalayan Cheese Treats), a 7-strong portfolio of freeze-dried fruit & veg nibbles (Nature’s Munch) and a couple of veggie blend mixes to support dogs following a BARF-based diet (Doctor Veneta’s Kitchen).
A total of 1,677 visitors attended this year’s PATS Sandown as the pet trade experienced two highly successful days of business activity. Retailers and buyers braved the worst of Storm Ciara to discover hundreds of new products being launched at the show.
“We were pleased with the high quality of visitors, which included independent pet retailers, the major pet chains, garden centres, high street stores and international buyers,” said organiser Gordon Thomas. “It was great to see that the pet industry wasn’t put off by the awful weather and travelling conditions, ensuring that PATS Sandown experienced another highly successful show.”
The New Product Showcase, sponsored by pbwnews, attracted a record entry for PATS Sandown of more than 200 products and was a busy area throughout the event, with retailers admitting they were spoiled for choice as they decided on which items to stock in their stores for the year ahead.
“PATS is a must visit twice a year for me. It's the best way to see and try new exciting products,” said award-winning retailer Sammie Hunt, of Redpaw Pet Supplies. “As well as being able to meet the faces behind the companies, learning more about their ethos, the show gives great opportunities to build working relationships, along with taking advantage of exclusive show deals. Without shows like PATS we would struggle to keep up with the pet retail industry developments and trends.”
The positive mood was echoed by exhibitors with Beco Pets co-founder George Bramble admitting: “The number and quality of visitors to the Beco Lounge exceeded our expectations. Sustainability initiatives was a big topic of conversation with retailers on our stand.”
Pet Munchies founder Suzanne Rothman agreed that PATS continues to deliver a high quality of visitor to the Sandown Park show, adding: “You can always be sure that it’s the decision makers who come to your stand. We also saw a lot of potential new customers.”
And Fiona Mascall, sales executive at Mark and Chappell, praised the buyers who travelled to the show during the worst of the weather on Sunday, added there was a good mix of current and new customers to the company’s stand over the two days. “Overall, it was a good show for us,” she said.
PATS’ chosen charity Dogs for Good, who train assistance dogs for adults and children with physical disabilities, were given a great reception at the show. As well as collecting cash donations from visitors and exhibitors, the charity were given items from the New Product Showcase to use as competition prizes at their many events.
Volunteer Stuart Rourke said: “Everyone has been marvellous. Lots of interest was shown in the work we do, and people were generous in giving money to the charity.”
PATS is now looking forward to its September showpiece at Telford International Centre, Shropshire, and already many companies have booked their stands. All the latest news and the exhibitor list can be found on a new-look website www.patshow.co.uk
Date for the diary
PATS Telford takes place on September 27-28, 2020
Picture round-up from the pet extravaganza
There was so much to see and do over the two days of PATS Sandown exhibition. If you weren't lucky enough to make it, here's a picture round-up from Sandown...
Marriages injected a bit of fun to the show...
There was so much to see and do over the two days of PATS Sandown exhibition. If you weren't lucky enough to make it, here's a picture round-up from Sandown...
Marriages injected a bit of fun to the show...
Gallery of pictures below...
Budding groomers were given the chance to win some fantastic prizes as a new competition called ‘Groom-Off Sunday’ was launched at PATS Sandown.
Groom-Off Sunday, run in association with expert Mathew Spry and The Welsh Grooming Academy, was aimed at novice groomers or those just starting out in grooming competitions.
Nine groomers took part on the opening day of PATS Sandown (Sunday 9th February) and they were judged on style, balance, sympathy and technicalities.
Judges Mathew Spry and Georgia Fuller, of Louisianna Grooming, had a difficult task deciding on the final winners before giving top prize to Katie Jayne Adams. Second place went to Samantha Hitchcock and third to Emma Crawley.
Katie Jayne, Samantha and Emma each won a hamper of prizes from competition sponsors HOWND and Aeolus plus a Groom-off Sunday trophy.
“Everyone taking part really enjoyed this competition and I have to say the standard was high,” said Mathew. “Groom-off Sunday is a great addition to this exhibition, and I’ve already had people asking me about entering the competition when it’s next held at PATS Telford in September.”
As well as Groom-off Sunday, a full programme of talks and demonstrations held throughout the show drew packed audiences to the Grooming Workshop stand in the Esher Hall.
With an increasing number of pet retailers introducing grooming salons into their stores, the PATS programme of talks and demos provided invaluable insights into this side of the business.
The demonstrations highlighted the knowledge and expertise required to complete traditional grooming techniques successfully as well as showing off a few modern and creative ideas.
Podium Pet Products has strengthened its portfolio with the introduction of new brand Be:Loved, which became an overnight success by winning a New Product Award at PATS Sandown.
“Our new brand emphasises our commitment to the pet care sector, naturally,” said CEO Carina Evans.
“We have an ambitious range of giftable and practical kennel sprays, paw and pad balms, shampoo bars, fur oil and odour eliminating candles.
“Inspired by nature’s offerings these ethically manufactured products will provide pet parents with natural alternatives for their everyday pet care.”
The inspiration for Be:Loved was an old family heirloom – a farmhouse animal husbandry care book. Carina’s family used to create cures for their stock using nothing but the hedgerows and nature’s harvest. They compiled a treasure chest of recipes – from soaps and shampoos to help farmers clean grubby hands and paws, to moisturising balms for callouses – and absolutely everything was natural.
“We used and re-imagined these recipes for our four legged friends and have an effective and luxurious range of products to help care for and delight pet and pet parent alike,” added Carina.
The Be:Loved range won the Pet Care New Product Award at PATS Sandown with the judges saying: “The packaging looked great, the product smelled really nice and was made with quality ingredients. This felt like a quality product ready to cater for emerging niche markets.”
Vital increases service levels by opening new office
Vital Pet Group's customer support team is opening new offices this month in the North of England. It means that customers will once again be able to enjoy normal opening hours from 8.30am to 5pm each day with full-service levels...
Vital Pet Group's customer support team is opening new offices this month in the North of England. It means that customers will once again be able to enjoy normal opening hours from 8.30am to 5pm each day with full-service levels.
The move will also coincide with a new team structure to allow retailers to benefit from a more specialised and improved service.
New appointment, Zoe Fleming (pictured), Head of Customer Experience, says, "This will mean retailers benefit from a better service overall, with quicker status updates and more help to improve profitability."
The new offices are fully equipped and the team will have access to software to better help them identify their customers' purchasing needs. Rather than one team of people dealing with all enquiries, there will now be two teams, with one focused on Service and an Internal Account Management team. The Internal team will be calling retailers on a regular basis to help them make stocking decisions, fill range gaps and take advantage of active promotions. It's a new service that offers a dedicated partnership approach to help improve their customers profitability. The Service team will handle questions about deliveries, order processing and payment enquiries.
Zoe comments: "Every retailer will benefit from a point of contact they know and who also knows their needs and preferences. They will be hearing from us more often with more bespoke promotions and opportunities that are appropriate for their outlet. We appreciate that it's tough in retailing across the board right now and everyone can benefit from using data to help them make good decisions to improve the profitability of their business. As a retail partner we take our responsibilities in this respect very seriously and look forward to having a positive impact on the success of the independent pet trade."
Retailers can find out the latest news and updates, including bad weather alerts, from Vital at www.vitalpets.co.uk or on the company's social media platforms.
Fish4Dogs staff get a slice of the action
Fish4Dogs staff got a slice of the action when a company celebration was held to celebrate its brand refresh. A layered cake was produced - representing the packaging colours across the Finest Complete range – for a tea party launch at the company’s head office in Worcestershire...
Fish4Dogs staff got a slice of the action when a company celebration was held to celebrate its brand refresh.
A layered cake was produced - representing the packaging colours across the Finest Complete range – for a tea party launch at the company’s head office in Worcestershire.
The event was hosted by Fish4Dogs CEO Graham Smith and Head of Marketing Jo Mulgrew, who led the brand refresh project.
Ahead of the celebration, each member of the team was asked to vote for their favourite colour from the new bags, and on the day, they were presented with a gift mug in their colour of choice.
The rainbow palette was mirrored across the canteen which had been decorated with balloons and banners in corresponding colours for the event.
Said Graham: “The brand refresh has been a significant undertaking and has resulted in a fresh and vibrant new look which will be rolled out across the Fish4Dogs range. Our company has a real ‘family’ feel and we wanted every member to be aware of what was happening and help celebrate our achievement.
“The new packaging is being rolled out across the various lines, with Finest Complete undertaken first and our extensive treats range being unveiled very shortly. This will allow us to showcase our new look more widely to the public, at Crufts, in March.”
Pure Pet Food launches new dog food recipe
A dog food company specialising in nutritious pet food that addresses dogs’ weight problems and health issues has added another wholesome recipe to its mix. Yorkshire-based pet food brand Pure Pet Food has launched its Wholesome Chicken recipe, which contains new and fresh 100% human grade ingredients such as cranberry, linseed, and even chicory root...
A dog food company specialising in nutritious pet food that addresses dogs’ weight problems and health issues has added another wholesome recipe to its mix.
Yorkshire-based pet food brand Pure Pet Food has launched its Wholesome Chicken recipe, which contains new and fresh 100% human grade ingredients such as cranberry, linseed, and even chicory root.
This is the company’s ninth dog food recipe and its most palatable yet, so is suitable for all dogs unless they’re allergic to chicken or suffer from pancreatitis or colitis.
Wholesome Chicken contains new ingredients like linseed, cranberry and chicory root, as well as existing favourites such as sweet potato and salmon oil, and has achieved a 95% nutritional rating on AllAboutDogFood.co.uk.
It sits alongside eight other recipes and flavours, from turkey and duck to fish and beef.
Pure’s recipes are made with fresh ingredients that are gently preserved by removing the moisture, leaving the meals around four times as dense in nutrients, vitamins and minerals as you’d find in fresh food.
Meals are delivered in dehydrated and freeze-dried form with dog owners simply adding water to create convenient, low processed meals for their four-legged friends.
After switching their dogs to Pure, existing customers reported improvements to symptoms including bad breath, itchy skin, stomach issues, and weight issues, and in some cases symptoms and ailments have disappeared altogether.
A spokesperson for PurePetFood.com said: “Our new Wholesome Chicken recipe is our most palatable yet, containing more than 60% chicken breast and thigh, and then crammed full with veggies, vitamins and minerals.
“Customers can visit our website and input their dogs’ details and the website will recommend the perfect recipe for your pooch.
“The freeze-dried food is then delivered straight to customers’ doors in our brand new, fully recyclable and eco-friendly packaging, which is personalised to their pooch.
“Pure Pet Food has become particularly popular for pets with ailments like sensitive skin or stomachs, as all of our recipes are grain-free, low-processed and made with human grade ingredients.
“The unique dehydration process we use gently removes the moisture in the ingredients, which actually leaves our recipes around four times as dense in nutrients, vitamins and minerals as you’d find in fresh food.
“This means Wholesome Chicken is much healthier and more nourishing than boring brown kibble biscuits and is a great alternative to raw feeding.
“Customers simply add warm water, stir and serve, creating a low processed meal for their four-legged friends in minutes.”
Broadreach Nature is looking forward to attending the Global Pet Expo 2020 which is being held on 26-28 Feb 2020 in the Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, USA.
As part of the British Contingent and exhibiting at Stand 4972 in the British Pavilion, the Broadreach Nature Team could not be more excited.
Said to be the largest trade show for pet industry, the Global Pet Expo features the newest, most innovative pet products on the market today. Around the world showcase the latest and greatest products available for all types of pets including dogs, cats, birds, fish, reptiles, small animals and horses.
This Expo promises to be a great platform for Broadreach Nature to launch its Newest Range of Veterinary Formulated Supplements for Dogs and Cats to the global market.
Included in this range are Veterinary Formulated Supplements aimed at Grooming, Calming, Skin and Coat Care, Joints and Digestion. Both in individual bottles as well as in handy well thought out Duo Packs.
Not only will the team be showcasing these and other great Broadreach Nature products but will also be on hand to answer any questions or queries that those attending may have. With great literature associated with each of the products as well as further insight into their environmental and ethical drivers it is definitely the stand to visit should you be attending.
For further information on all of the Broadreach Nature products visit www.broadreachnature.com
Ceva Animal Health, manufacturer of the leading behaviour products ADAPTIL and FELIWAY, is running its popular Pet Anxiety Month in March.
The nationwide campaign, which is in its second consecutive year, will raise awareness of pet anxieties amongst pet owners and highlight what can be done to help anxious pets. This can include professional help from a trainer or behaviourist, speaking to other pet owners to share thoughts and advice, teaching family and friends to help underpin any training regime put in place and utilising products alongside behavioural and training support.
It will be backed by a hard-hitting PR and advertising campaign, upweighted digital spend and a social media initiative. Ceva has also launched a marketing pack to support the campaign and promote Pet Anxiety Awareness Month and the steps that can be taken to help pets. The pack, which is available upon request, will include eye-catching bunting, wall displays, posters, leaflets and vouchers for gifts for pet owners.
Abigail King, senior product manager for ADAPTIL and FELIWAY at Ceva knows only too well how anxiety can affect a pet, as her three-year-old Schnauzer, Teddy, is nervous and struggles in certain situations, such as people coming to visit the house. She details their story in a short video which covers the issues that they have on a day-to-day basis and the calming support that Teddy receives from his ADAPTIL Calm On-the-Go Collar which helps him feel better, particularly during training. She also demonstrates her passion for her job by helping other people whose pets suffer from anxiety.
“It is widely known that humans suffer from anxieties, but pets do too with 82% of dogs and 89% of cats reported to be scared of something1,” comments Abigail King at Ceva. “It is therefore important that we educate pet owners on the signs of stress and the help and support that they can give to their pets. Pet Anxiety Month will get people talking and we want people to know that there are products out there to support pets and that help is at hand to get the right advice, which is extremely important.”
During Pet Awareness Month, Ceva is encouraging owners to share their real-life stories of pets that suffer with anxiety on Instagram and Facebook.
For further information, visit the Pet Anxiety Month website or follow the campaign on Instagram and Facebook. To request the Pet Anxiety Month marketing pack, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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A raw dog food firm has recalled a range of its frozen meals because they may pose a risk to health. It’s the second time within a month that Happy Hounds has taken such action.
A statement on the Food Standards Agency said:
Happy Hounds is recalling a range of its frozen raw dog food products on a precautionary basis as they may pose a risk to human and animal health. Sampling undertaken by the company has identified elevated levels of bacteria indicating a potential risk. A withdrawal and recall have been actioned by the company.
The full statement can be viewed by clicking here
The recalled products are:
- Raw Diced Chicken Dog Food (Batch code 1075)
- Raw Chicken & Tripe Dog Food (Batch code 1199/809)
- Raw Chicken & Beef Dog Food (Batch code 1223/828)
- Raw Chicken Dog Food (Batch code: 1233/1235)
- Raw Chicken Wing Tips (Batch code: 1235)
- Raw Tripe (Batch code: 838)
- Raw Liver (Batch code 838)
- Raw Minced Chicken & Tripe Dog Food (Batch code 1237/839)
- Raw Chicken Drumsticks (Batch code: 1236)
Last month Happy Hounds recalled certain types of frozen raw dog food because salmonella had been found in the products.
Over 50 major retailers are calling on the Government to take the first steps towards fundamental business rates reform in the Budget. The letter, coordinated by the British Retail Consortium, focuses on fixing transitional relief – a component of the business rates system.
Business rates are based on the rateable value of a property. Transitional relief limits the speed at which a firm’s business rates liability changes in response to changes in its rateable value. To achieve this, it staggers the speed at which ‘underpayers’ move to their higher business rate liability (upwards transition), and funds this by slowing the speed at which ‘overpayers’ move to their lower liability (downwards phasing).3
This system has two consequences:
- It forces retailers to subsidise other industries: £543m net over the last three years
- It forces locations outside London to subsidise London businesses: £596m net over the last three years
Retail remains the largest private sector employer in the UK, employing approximately three million people. The industry invested over £1bn in new technology, helping to drive up productivity growth to 5.1% (vs 0.5% UK average) in 2018. Despite this massive investment in the future, it faces some of the highest taxes of any industry. Retail accounts for 5% of the UK economy, yet is burdened with 10% of all business taxes, and 25% of business rates.
The letter has been signed by 52 major retailers and associated trade bodies including the CEOs of supermarkets, food-to-go, fashion, homeware, and department store retailers. It notes that the “burden of business rates has become unsustainable for many retailers” and that the system is broken, a view echoed by the Treasury Select Committee in October 2019. Scrapping downwards phasing would remove the harmful effects transitional relief has on retailers and businesses in the North of England. This could be achieved by central funding of upwards transitional relief.
This comes two days after the BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor showed that the 12-month average sales growth fell to a record low of -0.2%4.
Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium, said:
“The future of retail is an issue that matters to people everywhere - it employs three million people and serves the needs of the entire country. Yet transitional relief undermines both the industry as a whole, and many regions that it serves. Northern high streets effectively subsidise London banks, forcing a £600m transfer of wealth to the capital; this could be used to support investment in people and technology that would benefit all parts of the UK.
“Every year retail faces higher and higher business rates bills, holding back much needed investment in an industry that is transforming at a dramatic pace. Swift action at the upcoming Budget would show the Chancellor was serious about levelling up all parts of the UK and supporting a retail industry towards realising a brighter future.”
Eric Mazillier, UK CEO of Decathlon, said:
“The business rates system is broken and in urgent need of fundamental reform. It undermines investment in shops, damaging job creation and hurting high streets and town centres. Fixing the complex transitional relief scheme would be a good start.”
Andrew Hinds, Director, F Hinds:
“As government quite rightly works to 'level up' communities with one hand, the other is taking huge sums from the retail businesses struggling to survive in those communities through excessive business rates. If we don't reduce the cost of doing business in these towns to a sustainable level, we will kill their high streets, making it for harder for locals to find opportunities to find work and to access services. This will reduce social mobility.
“The Government should immediately implement the reduction that a business is entitled to as a result of a revaluation, rather than continuing to collect more than is justified over several years. Furthermore, they must acknowledge that any significant reduction in rental values is a 'material change' in circumstances and grounds for a business to appeal its excessive rates bill.”
Nick Lakin, Group Corporate Affairs Director at Kingfisher, said:
“Business rates are the number one tax paid by UK retailers. The tax rate is unsustainable, the system too complex and it does not reflect modern retail. Downwards transitional relief has added to this complexity and is exacerbating regional imbalances”.
Brambles Pet and Wildlife’s latest Charity Giveaway was another huge success with over 2,800 nominations for Wildlife Rescues on Facebook.
Sales Manager David Tracey commented: “We continue to be amazed at the levels of commitment and hard work done by Wildlife Rehabilitators and this year has proven to be extremely challenging with many rescues having to close their doors due to them being so full.
"These rescues are in desperate need of help from the public with food and supplies and we do all we can to help with our regular Giveaways.
"We do not pay for sponsored adverts on Facebook so the results we achieve are all organic which is fantastic to see.”
Supplied photo courtesy of Wildlife Orphanage.
Brambles Pet & Wildlife Website
Brambles Pet & Wildlife Facebook
Brambles Pet & Wildlife Twitter
Brambles Pet & Wildlife Instagram
A couple who sold sick puppies from an illegal "pet shop" have been spared jail.
Marco Tondo and his accomplice Nadine Campbell both pleaded guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to selling the animals from a Bishopbriggs property without a licence.
Several of the puppies sold by 32-year-old Tondo and 31-year-old Campbell became ill and two subsequently died.
Tondo was sentenced to 270 hours of community service and Campbell was handed a three-month restriction of liberty order, meaning she'll be tagged and unable to move freely at certain times.
Tondo also pleaded guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court last month to causing unnecessary suffering by failing to provide care contrary to the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006.
The Pet Industry Federation has launched two initiatives as part of its drive to improve its range of membership benefits and ensure that the organisation continues to provide relevant support to pet businesses.
PIF has teamed up with energy broker, Utility Bidder, to help members access competitive gas, electricity and water rates for their businesses. Utility Bidder will scour the market to offer PIF members reduced costs for their business energy and provide an end-to-end service, making the switching process as easy as possible for businesses.
In addition, PIF has re-launched its legal helpline provision and partnered with established professional services company, Croner, to deliver legal, HR, tax and health and safety advice free of charge as part of membership. The benefit also includes free business seminars and free monthly webinars which members can attend.
These two benefits come hot on the heels of a revised specialist insurance product for PIF members with leading insurance broker, Pet Business Insurance, which provides members with an additional 10% discount off PBI’s usual premiums and also includes £1,000 free veterinary cover as standard.
Members will be able to access details about all these benefits through the online members’ portal at https://pifmembers.petfederation.co.uk, or they can telephone PIF customer service on 01234 273933.
Three-quarters of pet owners prefer a bit of Rovermance, rather than partner time, with 75% saying they would give the heave-ho to a partner, if forced to choose between them and their pet.
Nearly one-in-four women (39%) prefer their pet to their partner, whilst more than a quarter of men (26%) say the same. And 91% of owners think their pets are more loyal than their partners.
These are the findings of a Valentine’s survey by pet website www.wamiz.co.uk which focused on the love between pet owners and their pets and the third wheel syndrome that can exist when a pet is in the mix.
The survey also found that 92% of interviewees say having a love of animals is a pre-requisite in any future partner and one-in-three (35%) hope a future partner will already have a pet snuggled up at home, when they start a relationship.
Unsurprisingly, half of UK pet owners will be spending Valentine’s Day with their pet and 47% will be treating it to a token of their affection via a gift.
Pets also play a big part in helping lovers hook up. 44% of single men and 31% of unattached women think it’s easier to flirt when with their pet and a whopping 78% of pet owners also say they find people with pets more attractive.
38% of dog owners and 21% of cat owners have had a romantic encounter thanks to their pet and 72% of pet owners think a pet has made their relationship stronger.
Wamiz’s Country Manager for the UK, Emilie Heyl, says: “Our survey showed that pets have such a special place in people's lives whether they are single or in a relationship. They bring us love, affection and loyalty and also, when owners are in a relationship, they usually unite the couple. Valentine’s Day is becoming as much about showing your love of your pet as about romance.”
Vital says love for pets is driving premium purchases
Vital Pet Group has been looking at how true love is affecting the pet trade and reports that while volume is slightly down, partly as a result of flat levels of pet ownership, value overall has increased as a result of a general move to premiumisation...
Thursday 20th February is Love your Pet day. Close on the heels of Valentine's Day, the event gives everyone an excuse to shout about how much they adore their furry friends. Vital Pet Group has been looking at how true love is affecting the pet trade and reports that while volume is slightly down, partly as a result of flat levels of pet ownership, value overall has increased as a result of a general move to premiumisation.
Sales and Marketing Director, Heather McManus (pictured) has been delving into the statistics and says they make interesting reading, "It's fascinating to see the increasing number of premium products that pet owners are buying and how pets are so integral to the family. The market has long talked about the humanisation of pets as an indicator of the longevity and potential profitability of the sector and I think this is just more evidence to back that up. It's clear to me that retailers must reflect this premium positioning and desire for high quality products."
She says that even the staples offer an opportunity, "When it comes to the important drivers of repeat sales, sectors such as dog treats are performing really strongly, while the trade is still accounting for a significant proportion of all dry dog food sales. Independent retailers sell less single serve cat food sales as a proportion of all sales but it does make a significant value contribution and outpaces wet dog food in our sector."
Heather is also keen to point out the pet effect isn't just relevant to families, "Single households are on the increase and projected to hit 10.7 million by 2039, up from around 7.7 million in 2017.* While those households may be less financially secure and tend to spend more of their disposable income, their relationship with their pet will often be particularly valued and therefore could attract more discretionary spend. It is reported that over 90 percent of pet owners in the UK say that owning a pet makes them feel happy.** A further 88 percent feel that pet ownership improves their overall quality of life.
"The strong love we feel for pets and the extent to which we value our relationship with them is one of the reasons that the pet trade is considered relatively recession-proof and all indicators are that for all sectors of the population that we will continue to seek out quality and innovation in pet products to enhance their wellbeing."
To celebrate Love your Pet Day Vital will be creating social media posts for retailers to share on their own platforms. They can be shared direct from the Vital Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/vitalpettrade/) or Vital customers can request them from their personal Internal Account Manager.
Retailers can find out the latest news and updates, including bad weather alerts, from Vital at www.vitalpets.co.uk or on the company's social media platforms.
Henry Bell celebrates National Nest Box Week
Ahead of National Nest Box Week (14–21 February 2020), leading quality wild bird and pet food producer, Henry Bell & Co, is focusing on nest box education with advice on how to select and care for the right nest box this spring...
Ahead of National Nest Box Week (14–21 February 2020), leading quality wild bird and pet food producer, Henry Bell & Co, is focusing on nest box education with advice on how to select and care for the right nest box this spring.
The Henry Bell range of Nest Boxes are specifically designed to encourage different bird species, including Robins, Blue Tits, Great Tits, House Sparrows and Wrens. They are all crafted to provide adequate insulation from the cold and extremes of weather and have good drainage, locks to protect from predators and top opening – _as recommended by wild bird care experts. Each nest box comes with recommendations about how best to use, clean and position the nest box.
Types of nest boxes start from RRP £5.99 for the Henry Bell Nest Box and Henry Bell Open Nest Box through to a more premium offering found in the Henry Bell Elegance range which features a variety of entrance holes, open front designs, sloping and flat roofs (RRP £14.99).
At a time where the national spotlight is on nest boxes, Henry Bell shares its top tips on how to select and care for the right nest box:
- Decide which birds you wish to attract into your garden: Ensure your nest box caters to the bird species you have in mind, such as a 32mm entrance hole which is suitable for the House Sparrow, Great Tit and Nuthatch, or an open front for Robins, Pied Wagtails and Wrens. Consider putting up nest boxes with different size holes as you will then cater for a variety of species. Whatever you choose, ensure there is plenty of fresh water available.
- Where to position the box: Safely locate the nest box away from predators, hanging it at a height of 2-4m from the ground (or below 2m from the ground in cover for open front nest boxes). Face the box between north and east, thus avoiding strong sunlight and the wettest winds. Make sure that the birds have a clear flight path to the nest.
- Caring for your nest box: Do not disturb the nesting box once it is in use. It is recommended that you clean your nesting box after September. Do this using rubber gloves and removing all nesting material, carefully using boiling water to kill any parasites.
- Consider the long-term relationship: Natural nesting sites are becoming scarce and wild birds and becoming more reliant upon nesting boxes. There are also ever decreasing food resources for wild birds and it is becoming more and more essential that you feed your garden birds all year round. Once you have started, try and create a routine as the birds will become reliant upon your help to bring life and vitality into your space.
Henry Bell & Co is a fourth-generation family-owned British business that produces quality animal feeds. The company launched its own range last year, Henry Bell Wild Bird Care, which features 120 quality products catering for every type of garden bird, all designed with health and wellbeing of birds in mind. Henry Bell has also made sustainable packaging a priority with all their Wild Bird Food packaging being 100% recyclable whilst protecting the integrity of the elements inside each bag.
The best of last weeks Pet Trade Xtra
The top-read stories from last week's Pet Trade Xtra can be seen below, if you missed them...
PATS Sandown 2020 New Product Awards
The winners of the PATS Sandown 2020 New Product Awards, sponsored by pbwnews, were chosen by a team of expert pet retailers, who arrived at the show before 9.30am on Sunday, February 9th, in order to make their choices from a record number of new products entered...
The winners of the PATS Sandown 2020 New Product Awards, sponsored by pbwnews, were chosen by a team of expert pet retailers, who arrived at the show before 9.30am on Sunday, February 9th, in order to make their choices from a record number of new products entered.
Their decisions took into account a number of guideline criteria such as product innovation, design, quality, packaging, value for money and sustainability.
The judges agreed that the New Product Showcase had produced a high calibre of entries with a tremendous amount of innovation. They were pleased to see such a wide range of products, and felt the majority of items on display showed some great innovation.
The Awards were presented to the winners at 1pm on Sunday by Justine Thompson, editor of pbwnews, and show organiser Gordon Thomas.
Here is a full list of the winners together with the judges’ comments:
PATS Sandown 2020
New Product Award Winners (sponsored by pbwnews)
Cat Food and Products
KONG Company (stand M9)
Judges said: “This was just a really cool product – cats will love it. A very robust product that will last forever.”
Dog Food Products
Canine Ketchup (stand R9)
Judges said: “This product is truly unique. It has distinctive packaging, which will make it stand out on the shelf, and has a multitude of uses.”
Dog Treat Products
Keto Orbiters Dog Treat
Rocketo (stand E15)
Judges said: “A good accessible price for a quality product made with beneficial ingredients. Attractive packaging.”
Dog Accessories and Toys
SPIN Interactive Slow Feeder (Bougainvillea)
PetDreamHouse (stand L6)
Judges said: “Eye-catching with a number of attachments. Great for use as a puzzle or activity toy or to slow down feeding.”
Dog Harnesses, Leads and Clothing
Rolled Tweed Collars
Tweedmill Textiles (stand S19)
Judges said: “Unusual to get a rolled collar that is not made of leather. These were great quality, would be washable and were very nicely finished.”
Small Animal and Bird Products
Nibble and Nest
Norfolk Industries (stand T1)
Judges said: “A great idea to have nesting material with treats inside. This product provides good enrichment for the animals at an affordable price point, and made by an ethical company.”
Pet Care Products
Podium Pet Products (stand D2)
Judges said: “The packaging looked great, the product smelled really nice and was made with quality ingredients. This felt like a quality product ready to cater for emerging niche markets.”
Waterless Dog Shampoo
Aqueos (stand C8)
Judges said: “This had a nice fresh smell and useful properties for the pet owner concerned about health and hygiene. This one would fly off the shelves.”
PATS Sandown off to great start despite weather
Pet retailers braved strong winds and heavy rain to ensure that PATS Sandown got off to a successful start as Storm Ciara battered the UK today (February 9). As the country suffered the effects of flooding, disruption to travel and power cuts, the pet industry still turned out in force on the first day of the show...
Pet retailers braved strong winds and heavy rain to ensure that PATS Sandown got off to a successful start as Storm Ciara battered the UK today (February 9).
As the country suffered the effects of flooding, disruption to travel and power cuts, the pet industry still turned out in force on the first day of the show.
It is the second year the event has taken place on a Sunday and Monday in February, and despite the unusual weather both exhibitors and visitors gave the exhibition a huge thumbs up.
Carina Evans, of Podium Pet Supplies, summed up the mood of exhibitors when she said: “If people needed proof that PATS Sandown is a not-to-be-missed event then they got it on the opening day. The UK pet industry showed real British Bulldog spirit to make sure it was a success.”
John James, of James & Steel, echoed those comments, saying: “Considering the bad weather, I have been pleasantly surprised with the way things have gone so far. Our stand was very busy as the doors opened.” And Elan Mansur, of Long Paws, added: “To be honest I was a little concerned about the weather affecting attendance but I needn’t have worried. It has been a great start.”
We.pet is an independent pet wholesaler launching at the show and director Robert Frost was delighted with the response from visitors. “We’ve had some very positive feedback and generated some quality leads,” he said.
Another first-time exhibitor, Natural Dog Food Direct, also experienced a good start to the show. The company’s Craig Ewing said: “Already it has been a great experience. There have been times when we’ve been mobbed and there are six of us on the stand, so that’s saying something, especially with it being ‘big coat’ weather outside.”
The first day of the show also got the thumbs-up from visiting retailers.
Andy Sheppard, of Rangebourne Pet Care, Devizes, Wiltshire, said: “I have attended every PATS Sandown and I wouldn’t miss it. I love the venue and I love the show, and the bad weather wouldn’t put me off coming. It has everything I need all under one roof. It’s just brilliant.”
And Diane Snell, who is setting up a pet retail boutique and dog grooming parlour in Dartford, Kent, commented: “I was determined to come despite the weather because this show is perfect for sourcing new products and ideas.”
Billy Matlock, of Anas Pet ‘N’ Tack store, Hindhead, Surrey, agreed: “PATS Sandown is worth visiting for all the new products on display. It’s also a good networking event where retailers and suppliers can share ideas.”
The second day of the show opens at 9.30am on Monday (February 10).
Adios Plastic, a new innovative company fighting the war on plastic, is showcasing its dog poop bags made from plants at PATS Sandown.
The plastic-free dog poop bags are made from cornstarch.
“Our premium dog poop bags are made from 100% renewable resources, certified both Home and Industrial compostable,” says the company.
“This product is a truly environmentally friendly option and is the thickest poop bag on the market.
“We are a proud member of One Percent for the Planet, donating 1% of all revenue to help protect our Oceans and our wildlife.”
Adios Plastic is exhibiting on stand B6 at PATS Sandown.
For more information visit www.adiosplastic.co.uk
It’s not often a new wholesaler launches into the UK pet food market but that’s exactly what’s happened at PATS Sandown with the launch of We.pet Independent Pet Wholesale.
The company's Dan Vander said: "We.pet are fiercely loyal to the independent pet channel in the UK and will sell only to David not Goliath. We will never supply internet-only retailers such as Amazon, Ebay or Zooplus nor will you find any of our products in any of the national supermarkets.
"We.pet believe in better value through quality with unique and wholesome products. Our partners will have the choice of a unique range of high-quality premium dog, cat and wild bird brands that we are distributing exclusively via the Independent Channel in the UK. Three-quarters of the brands already have established track-records of UK retail sales although the Independent Channel have never had wholesale access to them before.
"We.pet will be a dependable ally to the independent channel of the UK pet trade and PATS Sandown will see the UK wholesale debut of two new food brands as well as the worldwide debut of a completely new cat food brand to support our strategy of providing our partners with highly palatable and desirable, market-leading products that are only available via this channel."
You can find out more about We.pet on stand G2 in Surrey Hall at PATS Sandown 2020, and for more information contact Dan or Robert on 01342 710420.