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    Help Pets Spring into Spring

    Retailers can create a destination for shoppers with grooming products.

    By Kathleen Furore

    Spring is nearly here, and as pet owners welcome the warmer weather and longer days, they must contend with the health-related issues the season brings.

    Whatever the combination of products that end up on retailers’ shelves merchandising an assortment of pet grooming supplies can help retailers boost sales as the weather grows balmy.

    “Looking at the seasonality of grooming, historically we know that consumers ramp up spending beginning in April, and sales hit a peak in June,” says Shay Moeller, consumer pets product manager at Sterling, Ill.-based Wahl Clipper Corp. “Retailers can capitalize on grooming sales by promoting and running end caps on items such as clippers, shampoos, grooming tools and other grooming items. Retailers that focus on being a pet destination for grooming products will increase sales and draw new customers into their stores.”

    It might also be useful for retailers to be mindful of pet owners’ specific grooming needs to more effectively merchandise products and offer solutions.

    For example, excess shedding and the arrival of fleas, ticks and mosquitoes are some potential problems that can make spring less than pleasant for pets and their owners, industry experts say.

    “Pets develop heavier coats in the cooler months to protect them from the cold,” Moeller says. “When warmer weather comes into the picture, the dogs’ natural reaction is to shed their coats to prepare them for the warmer weather.”

    Double-coat breeds, including Huskies, Samoyeds and golden retrievers, are especially prone to spring shedding, notes Lisa Leady, a national certified master groomer affiliated with the Clark, Pa.-based National Dog Grooming Association and owner of Primp My Pooch, a mobile dog- and cat-grooming business in Genoa Ill. “With spring being just around the corner, pet owners can also prepare by making sure that their pet has started their flea tick and heartworm preventative [treatments],” Leady adds.

    Warm-weather Grooming Tips and Products

    Understanding the kinds of grooming tasks pet owners most frequently perform at home can help retailers decide on the kind and scope of products to add to their pet aisles this spring.

    Brushes are good options, since brushing a pet to remove loose fur is the first step toward good grooming, Wahl’s Moeller says. “Weekly brushing will prevent excess shedding while promoting a healthy coat,” he explains.

    “All pet owners should practice brushing and combing their pet, even if it is trimmed short,” Leady concurs.

    Wahl’s new pin bristle combo brush with ergonomic grip and Hartz Groomers Best brushes are examples of pet-grooming tools that remove the loose fur so common during shedding season.

    Clippers, shampoos, and flea and tick products are other items to consider to round out retailers’ pet-grooming product inventories for spring.

    Pet clippers, according to Moeller, can remove fur between the pads of the paws, which helps prevent pets from tracking springtime dirt and debris into the house. Nail clippers are also important, Leady notes. “The nails should be trimmed monthly to keep a nice, healthy foot,” she says.

    And shampoos do more than clean. Wahl’s all-natural Oatmeal Shampoo, Shed Control Shampoo, No-Rinse Waterless Shampoo and Refresh Cleaning Wipes remove dirt and debris and also help prevent additional shedding, while the company’s Flea and Tick Shampoo, featuring rosemary, mint and cedar oil, naturally repels fleas and ticks for up to one week, without the use of toxic chemicals.

    Secaucus, NJ.-based Hartz also offers shampoos and products that keep pets clean and pests at bay. Groomers Best shampoos and conditioners and UltraGuard Plus Flea & Tick Dog Shampoos, plus flea and tick collars for dogs and cats, are part of the company’s grooming product lineup.

    By Kathleen Furore
    • About Kathleen Furore

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