We Got Banned !!!!
Were we running nekkid through the aisles?? Creating all kinds of issues? Knocking dog food off the shelves? Grabbing the toys and squeaking them? Banging on the aquariums? Teasing the birds? Biting the staff?
Can you believe we never even made it through the door ?
Yup.. we were banned sight unseen!
After the great big fuss over at Pet Smart with the 5 month old food, we decided that a "heads up" approach might be the best policy. So our human emailed another local pet store to let them know what we would like to do and asked if a specific day would work.
To refresh; what we are attempting to do is compare our food Acana Small Breed against similar brands. We felt that the best way to accomplish this was to visit local Pet stores, ask the staff what they felt were their 3 top brands, see what other products and services each store had - for a later blog - and maybe do a couple of photo ops. As we said before nothing too extreme; we are not W5 or The Fifth Estate.
It didn't take long for the Pet Store Manager to get back to us; probably all of 20 minutes. Much better than the 11 days we waited for Pet Smart. Unfortunately, the response was short and sweet :
Everything has to be approved by headoffice for somebody to come in and approve food...i do not have raw at this location.
Now just wait a second..... what is this about approving food ?? It would seem that the manager might have read our email just a little too quickly.
So our human tried again. This time she explained the concept out very clearly. Come in, talk to the staff about food comparable to Acana Small Breed, find out what other products and services the store offered for a future blog and take some pics. Pretty much what new customer would do - minus the blog part .
The response was just as quick; but a faint glimmer of hope. The manager would send our email through to head office and see what they say.
Alas.. an hour later and the decision came down:
My head office didnt approve this. For furture reference please contact head office directly.
Wow!! We were stunned, disappointed and really, really confused!
So we ask you to imagine this scenario :
You have just moved to a new city. The pet store you used in your old town does not have an outlet in your new city. You look online and find one of the well known big box retailers. So you pack up your fur-kid and head over. Once in the store you take some time to look around; check out the toy section, treats, look at the fish and birds; then you head on over to the food aisle and discover .. your brand of dog food isn't sold here.. You now have 2 options; walk out of the store and go looking for another retailer that hopefully will carry your brand OR ask one of the nice associates if they can help you find an equivalent food. We bet that most readers would go with option #2 .. you are there and this is the easy solution.. besides, there is no guarantee that the next retailer will carry the food.
You explain everything to the associate, who -hopefully- guides you to several different choices; the whole time, cuddling up to your fur-kid.
You end the adventure with a purchase, a treat for your fur-baby and in today's world of social media; probably a pic of fur-kid and their new friend. Happiness all round.
Sounds just like a commercial you would see on TV. Its a scenario that would make any pet retailer proud.
Problem is .. its EXACTLY what we wanted to do and we got banned from doing it.
So we ask ourselves why? Why would this store not want some free publicity?
We contacted the head office and asked them why. Really we could have just shown up and done like any other pet parent would do. But we had the courtesy to write ahead.
Unfortunately the head office did not bother to reply.
In today's world of transparency this raises some eyebrows. Its not like a competitor would find out anything about this store that could not be discovered by sending a "spy" of their own in. This blog is not about encouraging or endorsing one brand or one store over another. This blog will compare items but its up to the reader to do the research and make the final choice. This blog will talk about different pet stores; but once again its up to the reader whether they switch or stay where they are and don't forget different stores in different cities can be extremely different even under the same banner.
Our first instinct was : "What are they hiding ? "
This could be so far off the mark its already in next week. But hey .. its not like we can go in and find out.
So gentle reader.. can you guess what retailer banned us ?? Believe it or not : PJ's Pets
Perhaps we shall ask you; gentle reader; to do our investigation for us.. let us know how you make out. Keep your eyes open; we can't wait to hear the results!!