By LOIS KINDLE
Children aren’t the only ones we go shopping for at Christmas. Our four-legged family members are also high on the list.
According to the American Pet Products Association, Americans will spend an average of $14 per gift per dog and $12 per gift per cat this year, said Jamie Baxter, spokeswoman for the trade group.
Most of us with pets wouldn’t think of letting the holiday go by without buying a gift or two or three on Buddy or Bella. And area retailers, especially small community businesses, are eager to accommodate us.
“We carry things not found in the big box stores,” said Laura Rubin, owner of Adogable Pets in Sun City Center. “We find new things every year at the Global Pet Expo, like Meowyjuana catnip treats.
“I met the owners at this year’s show, and I thought the product was so cool,” she said. “We’ve restocked it twice since our initial order.”
Now in her sixth year in business, Rubin primarily offers full in-house and mobile grooming service, featuring all-natural, holistic products and procedures.
Any of them would make a great gift for your dog or cat.
For example, Rubin is offering several discounted Christmas specials. They include a mistletoe pet cleanse; ginger or candy cane reconditioning treatment, thermal towel wrap and massage; or a blueberry facial with warm vanilla cookie spritz.
“Everything we use here is designed to be gentle for the pets and a positive experience for them,” she said. “And while we groom all breeds, we specialize in elderly dogs and those who are nervous about grooming.”
She also carries a nice selection of high quality, all-natural foods, treats, toys and supplies.
South Shore residents looking for more traditional gifts can find a wider selection at Doggone Holistic in Riverview.
Owned by Darrel Day, the store has a wide array of natural treats and chews, including bully sticks, cow tails, antlers and horns. He carries a large assortment of toys, Kongs, machine washable mats, pet beds, made-to-order bakery cookies, coats and sweaters and 27 brands of natural pet foods.
“We have gifts for all dogs, from Chihuahuas to bull mastiffs,” he said. “And we have toys and treats, scratchers and catnip for cats.”
One of his newest products is Canna – Pet Canna Biscuits, a supplement made exclusively from industrial hemp plants that has all the medicinal properties of cannabis without the psychoactive ones.
“I like to call it pot for pets,” Day said, laughing. “It’s designed to calm anxiety and aid in digestive and skin issues.”
One of his favorite Christmas items is a paw print ornament made of clay that owners simply make an imprint in and dry.
“We carry much-higher quality foods and a wider selection of merchandise than many large stores,” Day said. “And we have a very friendly, knowledgeable staff.”
Adogable Pets is at 4884 S.R. 674, Sun City Center, in the Kings Crossing shopping center. For information, call 813-419-4972.
Doggone Holistic is at 13131 U.S. 301 S., Riverview, in the Summerfield Square plaza. For information, call 813-374-4743.