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Astro Fresh News | Getting Ready for March!

This edition includes: March Offers are here! Unveiling the NEW Astro Media Kit - Posters, Counter Mats, Flyers, Shelf Talkers & Wobblers Several NEW Brands join Astro Loyalty and launch new programs! How to Make the Most of your Astro Offers It's simple, all you need to do is ENROLL and utilize all or some of the Astro Offer Marketing Tools outlined below: Automated Marketing via the My Astro Webpage and the Customer Mobile App. Branded Shelf Talkers available for printing either while enrolling or after enrolling via your Offers > Shelf Talker menu. The Astro Marketing Suite provides you with Templates with Offer Elements on which to showcase your Offers via Campaigns to your customers. Redeemable 24/7 on etailpet - an online storefront designed for independent retailers. Retailers who utilize the Astro Offer Marketing Tools mentioned above to showcase their Offers to their customers regularly see anywhere from several hundred to several thousand dollars in additional sales each month! TIP: Marketing a Brand's Astro Offer with their Frequent Buyer Program is a great way to introduce a pet owner to a new product - you can give them a discount today via the Offer and the promise of a free good down the road when they complete their new loyalty card! The majority of the Brands on Astro have both Offers and Frequent Buyer Programs, check your Available Astro Frequent Buyer list today to make sure you haven't missed any newbies! You Asked and Now You Shall Recieve! Introducing the NEW Astro Media Kit! You guys! Are you ready for this?! Download your FREE Astro Media Kit today and start decorating your stores with signage that alerts your customers to your Exclusive Loyalty Programs such as Frequent Buyer and Offers, and gives them a QR code to download your Customer Loyalty App for FREE. Yup, your store has an APP! TIP: Take 2 minutes right now to make sure your store's Mobile App is customized and your contact info is correct. Then start printing your new signs! Your free Media Kit is a BIG one! Below is a preview of less than 1/4 of what is included! Here's what you'll get when you download... Flyers or Signs for Acrylic Stands to place beside your registers or hang up around your store --- 3 Designs with 2 color variations --- 5.5x7" & 7x11" Posters to hang up around your store or place in the window --- 2 Designs with 2 color variations --- 11x17" & 20x30" A Counter Mat to fasten to the counter beside your register --- 1 Design with 2 color variations Shelf Talkers that fold over so they can tuck under product and hang on your shelves --- 3 Designs with 2 color variations Shelf Wobblers to advertise all common variations of available Frequent Buyer Programs --- Buy 6, Buy 10, Buy 12 NEW Astro Loyalty Brand Partners! What Are They Offering You and Your Customers? Sanicat Sanicat joins Astro Loyalty and launches a brand new Buy 12 Get 1 Free Frequent Buyer Program! This program contains all formulas and sizes of their cat litter. Sanicat has a great blog full of educational materials to educate both your staff and your customers about their products. *Enrollments in this program are pending until they can be reviewed by Sanicat. If you want to expedite the pending approval process reach out to your Sanicat rep.* Everything we do at Sanicat is for the love of pets. So our new line of cat litter features proprietary Oxify™ technology and 100% undiluted Wyoming Bentonite to reduce odors naturally. Pet Naturals Pet Naturals joins Astro Loyalty and launches a Buy 6 Get 1 FREE Frequent Buyer Program for their Pet Supplements and Treats! And that's not all! Pet Naturals has committed to publishing a calendar of Astro Offers starting this April! This means more deals for your customers on regular basis. So keep your eyes peeled and add them to your My Brands now so you don't miss them! Looking for tidbits of pet tips and holistic info, check out the Pet Natural's Blog. We really enjoyed this very helpful article about helping your dog overcome separation anxiety.

Astro Brand of the Week: Canidae Jumps in with All Four Feet!

Canidae's Astro Loyalty Programs - Only Available at Neighborhood Pet Shops Canidae has enthusiastically launched loyalty programs on all Astro Loyalty platforms: Shop Local Frequent Buyer - Multiple programs with all products represented! Exclusive Astro Offers - Current Offer extended through April! Introduce CA to your customers! Sharing the Love! - Multiple Adoption Programs with a Bounce Back Coupon to give you several opportunities to engage with and win over new pet owners when they adopt a pet from a local rescue or shelter! Canidae has your back when it matters most. They care about supporting Independent Retailer just as much as they care for the health of our pets. Canidae Introduces CA: Optimum Protein Tailored for Every Type of Dog! Canidae’s latest innovation, Canidae CA, offers optimum protein for every type of dog. With varying activity levels, dogs need different amounts of protein. Not sure what activity level a customer's dog fits under, Canidae has some tips and a quiz to help you match a pet with their ideal formula. Canidae CA comes in formulas for low activity (CA-20), moderate activity (CA-30), and high activity (CA-40), and is made with premium ingredients and real meat, poultry or fish as the #1 ingredient. Exclusively in the independent channel. “Canidae’s new line CA is designed to meet the needs of varying activity levels and lifestyles. Just like with people, optimal nutrition is not a one size fits all approach for dogs.” ~ Renee Streeter, DVM, DACVN Canidae CA: Only Offered at Independent Retailers! Canidae CA will not be available for purchase at Big Box stores and massive online retail sites (rhymes with Dewy & Babylon). Canidae understands that independent retailers are able to educate their customers when it comes to pet nutrition, and are thus best suited to This means that pet owners in your community will come to your store to learn more about Canidae CA! They will be thrilled to find out that you can provide them with regular Offers, such as the one above, and a Canidae CA Buy 12 Bags Get 1 Free, Frequent Buyer Program that will save up to 10% off retail! The perks to shop local never end. ❤ Canidae CA Marketing Materials Available in Astro's Marketing Suite News Images for Canidae in the Brand Media Library. Beatrix loves to take it easy. She's probably lounging in her sunny spot of the house napping or gazing out her window. She needs CA-20. Sometimes Murphy is full of energy. Other times he's happily taking up half the sofa. Whatever his mood, it's all about balance for this pup. He needs CA-30. Running, playing, and fetching - Rosco can do it all day, every day. He never stops moving, except maybe for a few "good-boy" pets. He needs CA-40. We have also added these images and some details about the new line to an educational Astro Template. This article will explain how to send your campaign from start to finish. The CA template is categorized in the Astro Template Library under Generic Offer Templates / Most Recent. Need help? Your Astro Team has your back! Email us at and we'll queue up the CA Campaign for you and all you'll need to do is send it!

Astro Fresh News | Valentine's Edition ❤

Today's Edition Includes: Rogue Pet Science joins Astro Loyalty and Launches a NEW Frequent Buyer Program. Feb 14th: Valentine's Day Marketing Media & Astro Offers Pairings Canva Template for Astro Offers Social Media Campaign February's Month-Long Holiday Marketing Guide Loyalty in Action Blog | Top 5 Ways to Keep Your Dog Safe This Winter Rogue Pet Science joins Astro Loyalty! Rogue Pet Science has launched a NEW Buy 5 Get 1 Free Frequent Buyer Program for their high-quality pet supplements! Astro Retailers in the USA are invited to enroll today. (Enrollments are pending until they can be approved by a member of Rogue Pet Science.) Rogue Pet Science is an all-natural pet products company focused on natural dog supplements and vitamins to improve your dog's overall nutrition and gut health. Rogue Pet Science has an extensive blog dedicated to amassing amazing articles on pet nutrition and health. There's even a section that focuses on Gut Health, which we all know is the foundation of our pets' overall well-being. Rogue Pet Science goes beyond just Canine Health. They also offer several supplements for our hooved companions like horses, sheep, and goats! These supplements are also included in their Astro Frequent Buyer Program. Valentine's Day Marketing Materials Valentine's Day is almost upon us! We have enjoyed the social campaigns that we have seen thus far by our Astro Neighborhood Retailers. There are so many cute bakery cookies! Every year that Valentine's Day rolls around I am so grateful for my dog and cats. Valentine's Day has become a day to spoil the pets whom I love. This weekend I have plans to walk my pup to our neighborhood shop to get him a fancy cookie and get the cats something else they can enjoy throwing off counters, and I can't wait! If you haven't sent your customers Valentine's Greetings informing them of the special treats, toys, and fun things that they can gift to the pup-loves and meow-friends in their lives then now's the time to get started! Marketing Materials: Holiday Template with Offer Elements and Double Image Element to showcase your Valentine's themed goodies. Sharing the Love: This is a great time of the year to promote your Sharing the Love programs. My Promotion Ideas: $/% Off a product you Love! $/% Off any 1 product your customer loves! Social Media Fun: Invite your customers to share a love letter to their pet. Ask them to share their adoption story. Related Pet-Themed Holiday: Feb 20th is Love Your Pet Day. Holiday Template available soon! BONUS! Canva Template for Valentine's Day Offers! This template is currently sized for a Facebook Post, but you can use the Canva editor to modify it for any social platform. Click the image to grab the share link. Make sure you edit it and add your store's logo to the bottom left-hand corner (where the Big Dogs placeholder logo is located). The Offer Images can be found in your Image Library, which is housed within the Astro Marketing Suite. Or you can download the image directly from your Enrolled Offers list. February's Month-Long Holiday Marketing Guide Includes Marketing Guides, Canva Links, Astro Offers Pairings, and Social Media Campaign Ideas. Loyalty in Action Blog Article to Share The Loyalty In Action Blog was created in order to provide Neighborhood Retailers with educational materials to share with their customers. These articles were designed to help identify general pet lifestyle questions and identify local pet shops as the source for the answers to these questions. This week's blog is all about dog winter safety and what pet owners can do to ensure their dogs are safe as the weather gets chilly. When sharing this blog make sure to mention any supplies that your shop carries that fit the theme. And if you have your own tips to share, include them! How is it that cold weather comes around every single year, but somehow it feels like we're always unprepared for it? While you're shuffling through boxes in storage searching for your homemade Bernie-Mittens, or shopping for a new scarf, be sure to take some extra measures to keep your dog safe and comfortable this winter. From hypothermia and frostbite to injured paws and antifreeze poisoning, there are a lot of things to watch out for in the colder months. Read the tips below and show winter who's boss! - Top 5 Ways to Keep Your Dog Safe This Winter

Top 5 Ways to Keep Your Dog Safe This Winter

How is it that cold weather comes around every single year, but somehow it feels like we're always unprepared for it? While you're shuffling through boxes in storage searching for your homemade Bernie-Mittens, or shopping for a new scarf, be sure to take some extra measures to keep your dog safe and comfortable this winter. From hypothermia and frostbite to injured paws and antifreeze poisoning, there are a lot of things to watch out for in the colder months. Read the tips below and show winter who's boss! Control Their Exposure to the Cold Be aware of the temperature and act accordingly! When it's cold or snowy (or cold and snowy 🥶 ), you make sure you have all of your warm gear at the ready, or you just stay home instead. It should be no different for our lovely pets. 1. Keep In Body Heat Sometimes, controlling exposure to the cold means investing in a pet sweater if your dog's fur isn't great at insulating. If your dog has short hair and seems to shiver easily in the cold, buying a well-fitting sweater or coat can make bathroom breaks more bearable. 2. Footwear Consider buying doggie boots to prevent painful paw damage from the cold and avoid frostbite. Even though our dog's paw pads are made to be more durable than our weak human feet, standing in freezing snow and ice for an extended period of time can be uncomfortable and dangerous. 3. Stay Indoors Finally, there are situations in which staying indoors as much as possible is the best option. If the temperature is well below freezing and your dog is ill-equipped to deal with the cold, it's probably time to take a raincheck on your winter wonderland hike. Instead, take advantage of February's Dog Training Education Month (no one would complain if we extended this until spring, right?) and teach your dog a new skill from the warmth of your home. Watch Out for Salt and Chemicals Used to make our lives as humans easier, chemicals like antifreeze and deicers can be a huge detriment to the health and safety of our beloved pets. 4. Avoid Antifreeze Watching your dog (and cat) when they're outside around places where cars have been is absolutely necessary. Antifreeze can cause kidney failure when ingested and can have fatal effects in days. What makes it even worse is that our scent-oriented animals usually enjoy the taste of antifreeze and won't hesitate to eat it if available. A cat licking its paw after stepping in antifreeze, or a medium-sized dog licking up only 5 tablespoons could be enough to cause severe issues. For this exact reason, I have a "no snuffling around on the pavement" rule for my dog in the winter. 5. Dangerous De-Icers The salt and other ice-melting chemicals on roads and sidewalks are also best to be avoided. The ingestion of chemicals used to de-ice can cause intestinal issues and other health problems. Even when pure salt is used, ingestion can be dangerous and there can be negative effects on your pet's paws. Salt can be incredibly painful for your dog to walk on and can lead to dry, cracked, and bleeding paw pads. To prevent this, you can: Avoid salted sidewalks and roads all together Invest in dog booties Wash and wipe off your dog's feet after getting in from a walk Use a paw balm or wax to keep your dog's paws protected and moisturized Be sure to use pet-safe de-icers around your home Don't let winter win. Keep your dog safe, warm, and comfortable. If you're still unsure of what you need, your local pet store is a great resource for both winter-proof products and for personalized advice. Finding a product that not only works, but that your dog will actually tolerate can be difficult, but getting help from people that know their stuff and truly care about your pets can make all the difference!

Promotion Calendar & Marketing Materials | FEBRUARY'S On-Going Holidays

Table of Contents: Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month Dog Training Education Month Pet Dental Health Month National Cat Health Month February is chock full of holidays that pair perfectly with Astro Offers, Sharing the Love Adoption Programs, and My Promotions. We have added new Astro Templates and Astro Images to your Marketing Suite that you can use to showcase your store's special promotions for the month. Our Knowledge Base is also full of helpful Social Media Tips. Are you on etailpet? We have started adding Holiday Banners to the Astro Image Library that you can use to decorate your online store. There are two new Astro Image Filters, "etailpet Shop Now Banners" and etailpet Secondary Banners". Show Now Banners are 1350x350px and Secondary Banners are 1350x290px. Introducing Canva design links! Astro will start sharing our designs with you via Canva links so you can add your own flourishes before posting or using them in your Campaigns. You'll start seeing these peppered throughout these Marketing Guides. They are especially useful for social platforms like Instagram that require you use your phone in order to post. Canva's basic account is free to use. It can be accessed from your browser via or you can download their Desktop App to Windows. They also have a mobile app (Andriod, Apple) that can be used to publish your designs direct to Instagram. They even offer fun design ideas for their mobile app users. Editor's Note: Since February has so many Month-Long Holidays we have decided to only include the holidays on this guide that relate the closest to Neighborhood Retail, Shopping Local, Natural Pet Foods, Holistic Health. As the month progresses we may add additional materials for your use - so check back periodically. (psst, I'll be adding Canva links as the month progresses!) Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month pairs perfectly with Sharing the Love. Oxbow and Carefresh by Healthy Pet both have programs on the Sharing the Love platform. The Oxbow Sharing the Love Program, (a.k.a. Have a Hay Day) is private and only available for local retailers who are a part of their Preferred Store Program. As a member, Oxbow will provide your store with additional support and promotional opportunities via Astro. If you are a Preferred Store member don't miss out on this opportunity to promote your Oxbow Adoption Program! Carefresh's Sharing the Love Program is available to all Astro Members and rewards new rabbit parents with a complimentary bag of bedding. Enroll today and don't miss this opportunity to promote Sharing the Love at your store! That's not all! Both Oxbow and Carefresh have Exclusive Offers for February! These Offers are available to All Astro Members! Marketing Materials: Holiday Template with Offer Element and Sharing the Love. Astro Images under Holiday, etailpet Shop Now, etailpet Secondary Banners for eTailPet e-comm retailers, Facebook, and Instagram Image Libraries. Astro Offers Pairing: Adopt a Rabbit Month Offers Canva Links: Instagram Image Social Media Fun: Ask your customers to share pics of their rescue bunnies. Invite local rabbit rescues to share posts about their adoptable rabbits - make sure they know about your Sharing the Love platform! Post your Sharing the Love > My Astro Webpage Flyer to your Facebook page. Dog Training Education Month Dog Training Education Month falls perfectly onto the coattails of January's National Train Your Dog Month. This means that the promotions you began in January can rollover into February. Just think of all of the pet parents that made New Year's Resolutions relating to training their puppies, or adult doggos! February can be all about keeping these pet owners on track and encouraging them to stick with it! Are you a dog trainer? Do you have dog trainers on staff? Are you friendly with a local dog trainer? Are there some training tips that have worked for your dog? Does your store carry training treats and other dog training supplies? I'm sure there is some way that you and your shop relate personally to the world of dog training! There's a bunch of fun stuff you can do for this holiday: You can design a Dog Training Essentials display in your shop that includes the Training Treats that are a part of February's Astro Offers. Launch a Pre-Paid Membership Loyalty Program for customers who sign up for your training classes to get them to commit to a structured training program. Host a Facebook Live with a local trainer to answer any questions your customers may have. Include a reward for anyone who attends! Create a My Promotion for a free training consultation! Are you participating in Sharing the Love? A free training consult would be a fantastic coupon to include in your New Dog Welcome Home Care Packages. What a great way to support new pet parents and keep them coming to you for their pet care needs! Marketing Materials: Holiday Template with Offer & My Promotion Elements. Astro Images under Holiday, etailpet Shop Now, etailpet Secondary Banners for eTailPet e-comm retailers, Facebook, Instagram, and My Promotions Image Libraries. Astro Offer Pairings: There's a bunch! Some key ones to look out for: Vital Essentials has a Buy 3 Get 1 Free (it's the perfect stock up Offer!) on their highest value freeze-dried treats. Lotus, Grandma Lucy's, Raised Right, West Paw all have $Off Offers on their yummiest treats. Nandi Pets is also running a BOGO! My Promotion Idea: Free Dog Training Consult - this is a great way to encourage your customers to engage with you and commit to a series of classes. You can even give them a tease by showing them some leash training techniques, or a simple "shake" "sit" "stay" "place" technique. Pet Dental Health Month Here it is folks! The holiday that reminds us of what we should be doing on a regular basis for our pets, caring for their teeth! I'll admit, I'm not always the best about regularly brushing my dog's teeth, and forget about being able to brush my cats' teeth - yikes. Pet Dental Health Month is the time to educate your customers and show them that caring for their pet's teeth, gums, and gut (which also has a direct relation to a pet's breath) is not as complicated as they may think! The most important thing a pet parent can do for their pet's teeth and gums is anything at all! It may be difficult to get a pet parent to commit to brushing their pet's teeth every day, but most will be willing to commit to brushing once a week. While others may be more inclined to incorporate dental chews, raw bones, water additives, or dental sprays/gels into their pet's routine. The idea is to get them on the dental care bandwagon in one form or another, and as their new dental routine becomes achievable they can start to add other elements. If you have a vet on-sight, or have a good relationship with local vets in your area, this is a good time to recommend a dental check up to your customers. If your vet is on-sight set up a My Promotion for a discounted or complimentary dental checkup so your customers will be more inclined to schedule a follow-up dental cleaning. If you do not have a vet on-sight see if one of your local vet offices will join you in a cross-promotion/referral program. Ex. Every customer referred to your store after receiving a cleaning gets a free/discounted dental care item. If your vet friend agrees to offer their own discount for your customers even better! Dental health is so much more than teeth brushing! We are all aware that overall health begins with a good diet, and many dental health issues are caused by malnutrition. That's why we have included February Offers for Supplements and Complete Diets in addition to the Offers most directly related to Dental Health Month, such as Chews and Gut Supplements. Our Offer Spotlight for Pet Dental Health Month has to go to Earth Buddy and their Offer for their Gut Health supplement which helps to heal the gut and freshen breath. Runners up include Etta Says Chews (yup, dental health can also be yummy!), and West Paw's Chew Toy and Treat Offer. That's just the tip of the icey fresh iceberg, click the Astro Offers Banner below for more! Marketing Materials: Holiday Template with Offer/My Promotion Elements. Astro Images under Holiday, etailpet Shop Now, etailpet Secondary Banners for eTailPet e-comm retailers, Facebook, Instagram, and My Promotions Image Libraries. My Promotion Ideas: $/% Off Dental Care Items. $/% Off Dental Exam with on-sight vet. Free Dental Consultation - this should be a discussion/educational session that you have with your customer in order to show them how they can incorporate dental health into their pet's routine. Astro Offer Pairings: Natural Chews, Supplements, Complete Diets to build up their nutritional foundation. Flyer Link to enroll. Social Media Fun: Share links to educational articles. Share tricks you have learned (if you know how best to brush a cat's teeth I would love to know!) National Cat Health Month Now is the perfect time to pose these questions to your customers... "What's your cat eatin'?" "What's in your cat's bowl?" "What's in your cat's food?" Cats are obligate carnivores. They need the meats! Matching a cat with their ideal diet can be tricky. We who have spent any time advising pet owners in natural pet food shops know this to be fact. Cats tend to imprint on their food, and they are often picky when it comes to texture and temperature. There are the cats who were introduced to kibble young - and they will not deviate from their crunchies! Then there are the cats that love their wet food when it is at room temperature, but they give you that look when you try to serve the exact same food to them cold. (Revenge is best served cold, not my food hooman!) I have to say I am pretty lucky. Both of my cats will eat their raw nuggets directly from the fridge (and there have been times they've licked them like meat popsicles when they weren't completely thawed). They will also eat their baked food from their food robot, and they will happily lap up their goat milk and bone broth snacks with freeze-dried "meat-marshmallows", or enjoy the occasional canned or pouched delicacy. (I'm knocking on all of the wood right now!) But what about those pet owners that are struggling to transition their cat from [insert icky food here] to something healthier? Or the ones that were hoping to introduce a new supplement, or try a natural cat litter. Now is the time to offer them some support and guidance. If you do not already offer a satisfaction guarantee then try one out for the month of February for your picky cat customers. Advertise Free Cat Nutrition Consultations using My Promotions. Make sure they are aware of the Cat Health Themed Offers you are running for the month - we are featuring Offers for Complete Diets, Toppers, Treats, Supplements, and Litter. Cats can be prone to dehydration, so introducing additional moisture into their diet is of huge benefit. This month Lotus, Nulo, and Victor all have Astro Offers that reward free wet food with a purchase of their dry diets! Customers can also try moisture rich raw or dehydrated diets thanks to Grandma Lucy's and Primal Pet Food's generous Offers. Koha even has an Offer on full cases of their wet diets! Marketing Materials: Holiday Template with Offer Elements and My Promotion Element. Astro Images under Holiday, etailpet Shop Now, etailpet Secondary Banners for eTailPet e-comm retailers, Facebook, Instagram, and My Promotions Image Libraries. My Promotion Ideas: Free Nutritional Consult for Cat Parents Social Media Fun: Ask the question, "What's in your cat's bowl?" and share some fun facts about cat nutrition and health. The key is to not make anyone feel bad about what they are currently feeding, but to empower them to be a proactive participants in their cat's health routine!

Astro Fresh News | January 22nd - 29th

This Week's Top News: Marketing Materials for our Upcoming Holidays: Answer Your Cat's Question Day, Change a Pet's Life Day, Peanut Butter Day, Seeing Eye Guide Dog Aniversary Day Lifestyle Blog Article: Change a Pet's Life by Sharing the Love! Promotional Calendar Sneak Peek for February! Marketing Materials for January's Week 3 & 4 Holidays Tomorrow is Answer Your Cat's Question Day! This has the potential to be a great social media campaign! Start a conversation about the cat health and lifestyle questions that your customers have gathered from their cats, and impress them with your knowledgeable answers. This upcoming weekend we have Change a Pet's Life Day and Peanut Butter Day. Change a Pet's Life Day focuses on the joys of pet adoption, but you can take it one step further and use this as a platform to bring up the topic of proper nutrition and how life-changing certain healthy choices can have on a pet. Pair this holiday with Sharing the Love and you cannot go wrong! Sharing the Love allows you to reward those customers who have chosen to adopt a pet with a free Welcome Home Care Package which is bursting at the seems with healthy foods, treats, and supplements. This gives the pet owner what they need to start their new pet on a journey of health, and they have you and your team as a guide if they need help along the way. Peanut Butter Day is one of those fun holidays that you can use to showcase the peanut butter infused products you and your customers have grown to love. You can also use this holiday to share with your customers some of the toy stuffing tricks that you have learned that are best for occupying an active pup in situations that require peace and quiet. Seeing Eye Guide Dog Day is on the last Friday of the month. On this day you can call attention to the good work The Seeing Eye school has done for the members of the blind community. You can also choose to pair this holiday with Sharing the Love. Yup, any dog that is welcomed into the home to serve the pet owner as a service or guide dog is eligible for a Welcome Home Care Package! For more inspiration and an outline of the Marketing Materials Astro has provided for these holidays check out our Promotion Calendar & Guide for January's Day-Long Holidays. New Lifestyle Article to Share with Your Community! This article was created in order to provide you with more content to share with your customers on Change a Pet's Life Day. The focus is on the connection between Sharing the Love and how both Adoption and Nutrition can change a pet's life for the better. Sharing the Love connects the neighborhood pet shop with new pet owners so they can work together to ensure that the lives of adopted pets continue to improve on a daily basis.
They say it takes a community to raise a child. Well, I believe the same goes for our pets! Whether or not your store is participating in Sharing the Love, we believe this holiday affords you several valuable opportunities to discuss the ways in which your business can assist a pet owner in changing the life of their pet. This can be in the form of nutrition, training, and boarding/doggie daycare. February Holiday Promotion Calendar: Sneak Peek! Whoo-wee! February is the shortest month of the year, but it is in no way lacking in pet-related holidays! Month-long Holidays for February: Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month Dog Training Education Month International Hoof Care Month National Cat Health Month Responsible Pet Owners Month Pet Dental Health Month Spay/Neuter Awareness Month (aka Beat the Heat Month) & Prevent a Litter Month Week-Long Holidays for February: Have a Heart for Chained Dogs Week - Feb. 7-14 National Justice for Animals Week - Feb. 21-28 Day-Long Holidays for February: Week ONE: National Golden Retreiver Day - Feb. 3 Annual Doggie Date Night - Feb. 3 Week TWO: Superbowl - Feb. 7 Week THREE: Valentine's Day - Feb. 14 Pet Theft Awareness Day - Feb. 14 Mardi Gras - Feb. 16 International Tug-o-War Day - Feb. 19 Love Your Pet Day - Feb. 20 Week FOUR: National Walk Your Dog Day - Feb. 22 International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day - Feb. 23 World Spay Day - Feb. 23 All of these holidays will at least have curated images that you can choose to use for your own Social Media Campaigns. The majority will have Marketing Libraries consisting of combinations of at least 3 of the following materials: Templates, Astro Offer Pairings, Website Banners, Lifestyle/Social Images, My Promotion Ideas, Social Media Ideas, and Lifestyle/Educational Blog Article to share. Stay tuned as we start to build February's Promotion Guides. Publication of these guides and materials will begin before the end of January. We'll start with Week 1 and Month-Long in order to give you ample time to plan your communications and conversations with your customers.

Change a Pet's Life by Sharing the Love!

January 24th is Change a Pet's Life Day! This wonderful day of awareness is all about bringing awareness and encouraging people to adopt a pet from their local shelters and rescue agencies. On this day we consider all the ways in which we as pet parents and pet lovers can contribute to the positive change of the lives of the pets in our homes and communities. This is a great time to look into Astro Loyalty's pet adoption reward program Sharing the Love, where the goal is to get adopted pets off to the great start they deserve after someone decides to change their life. Changing a Pet's Life Forever Adoption About 6.5 million pets enter animal shelters each year in the United States, and only about 3.2 million are adopted out. There are so many loving animals waiting to be adopted, but many are euthanized or stay in animal shelters for years on end. Giving a pet a forever home is the ultimate improvement to their life. Consider adoption before you go to a breeder. Relationships forged between pet parents and their adopted pets are some of the strongest bonds known between humans and animals. Many pet parents even believe that their adopted pets are able to express gratitude to their rescuer. Nutrition Diet is key to health and longevity. The idioms "you are what you eat", and "let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food", demonstrate that proper nutrition is an investment in good health. The positive impact that a proper species-appropriate diet can have on a pet's life can be astounding. High-quality ingredients can make your pet’s coat shinier, boost their immune system which results in fewer sick visits to the vet, reduce or even eliminate allergies, and improve cognitive ability so learning that new trick becomes easy-peasy. Healthy adjustments to diet have even been shown to lessen anxiety! If you feel your pet isn't living their best life there's no need to feel discouraged, you have the power to proactively improve their reality. Our pets rely on us when it comes to their nutrition. It's not like they can hookup with a pack of dogs or pride of cats and start stalking their prey through the forest or tundra. (The greatest hunt my cats have ever been on was that time a herd of ladybugs invaded our apartment 🐞🐈🐈) Taking the time to educate oneself on species-appropriate diets and beneficial supplements, then committing to a higher level of nutritional care for your newly adopted pet (or for your old and loyal pet!) is the best way that you can continue to make a positive impact on their life. This is especially true for animals coming out of shelters, as they may not have received personalized nutritional care or one-on-one attention in a long time. Your Neighborhood Pet Shop will be your most valuable resource when it comes time to design the nutritional regiment that best suits the personal needs of your pet. Their staff is educated and able to answer your questions. The shop owners are dedicated to ensuring that the products they carry are transparent in their sourcing and contain only healthy ingredients. Most of these shops guarantee the products they carry and will gladly help you until you find the perfect fit for your pet. What is Sharing the Love? Sharing the Love is a program that connects new pet parents, local neighborhood pet shops, and natural pet food and supply brands. Even local pet shelters can get on board! If you've just adopted a pet, you can look up participating pet retailers near you to get a free welcome home bundle of food, treats, and other pet supplies. If you're a neighborhood pet shop that's enrolled in this program, you get the opportunity to participate in something bigger by helping to change the lives of newly adopted pets! That's not all - Sharing the Love connects the neighborhood pet shop with new pet owners so they can work together to ensure that the lives of adopted pets continue to improve on a daily basis. They say it takes a community to raise a child. Well, I believe the same goes for our pets! How Sharing the Love Helps Our Community It’s easy to see how a program like Sharing the Love helps pets. In one fell swoop, an adopted pet is able to immediately get started on high-quality and nutritious foods and products that help improve and maintain excellent health. (Granted pets don’t know that their new owners got those products for free, they’d surely be happy about that too!) We know our new companions will be happy, now how about everyone else involved? New Pet Owners POV: You just adopted a very special pet from your local shelter. Their big brown eyes were what stopped you in your tracks. When you sat down beside them to say hello they snuggled up in your lap. One of the volunteers explained that they were recently rescued from a life as a stray. At that moment you told yourself that you were meant for each other and you swore that you would do everything you could to protect them and show them that they are loved. As you carry them to your car to head home you notice that you can feel their ribs and there are patches of fur missing from their coat. Now what? Where to begin? For all your good intentions you need some help! Never fear! Your Neighborhood Pet Shop is here and they are actively participating in Sharing the Love! This means that your newly adopted pet is eligible to redeem a Welcome Home Care Package containing healthy foods, treats, supplements, and supplies that will help you get them started on their journey to lasting health. These helpful contributions not only help you save money after deciding to change a pet's life, but it gives you the perfect opportunity to visit your local neighborhood pet shop and see how much more they can provide for you and your pet. "More" doesn't just mean more product for less money (but that is part of it thanks to Frequent Buyer loyalty programs) - it means higher quality, a more caring environment, and better, knowledge-based recommendations. Adoption starts a pet on the path to a new and better life, improvements to their diet can ensure that they remain on that path for many many years to come! Neighborhood Pet Shops As a smaller, independent pet food and supply retailer, you have a lot to offer. Participating in Sharing the Love not only contributes to the cause of changing pets' lives for the better, but it also gives potential new customers the opportunity to discover what makes your store special and worthwhile. As freshly made pet parents come into your store, they get to experience your unparalleled customer service, marvel at your product quality, and find relief in your animal care advice that they surely won't find online or in big-box pet stores. Once a pet owner visits a local store with personable staff who introduces them to pet foods that, in a pinch, they could eat themselves, it's a lot harder for that pet parent to settle for second-rate stores and products. I will always be loyal to my favorite neighborhood pet shop because the services they provide me and my furry family is invaluable. I trust them implicitly. Committing to a higher level of nutritional care is one of the best things we as pet owners can do for our pets. Sharing the Love makes it easy for neighborhood pet shops to provide new pet owners with free, high-quality, and healthy supplies for their adoptee. Everyone benefits from this program, including local businesses, adopted pets, and their saviors. This year on Change a Pet's Life Day, learn about adoption and proper pet nutrition. Check out Sharing the Love to enroll as a retailer or find participating locations near you. Pets change our lives every day, and it's time to return the favor!

Astro Fresh News | January 14th - 22nd

This Weeks Fresh News Includes: Marketing Materials for the 2nd & 3rd Week of January - Jan 14: Dress Up Your Pet Day & Jan 22: Answer Your Cat's Questions Day. Astro Offers Purrings - These Offers are the Answers to your Cat's Questions! Astro Partners who are NEW to Astro Offers! Don't miss these debuts! February's Astro Offers - Enroll today and start prepping your signage! Marketing Materials for January's Week 2 & Week 3 Holidays Today, January 14th is Dress Up Your Pet Day and we've been having a lot of fun with it on our social media! Have you and your customers started sharing posts of their pets rocking their best LoveItCouldntWearIt looks? There's still time! Get them up and tag us @astropetloyalty on Facebook and @astroloyalty on Instagram. Or comment on our Facebook Post. Here are some of our Astro Peep's pets... Next week, January 22nd is National Answer Your Cat's Question Day! We have put together some additional marketing materials for you since last week such as images to use on social media and newsletter campaigns, and an image you can use to create your own My Promotion. This holiday provides the purr-fect opportunity to show your customers that you and your highly trained staff possess the answers to all their kitty's questions. Let them know their questions are welcome! Astro Offers Purrings: These Astro Offers provide the Answers to Kitty's Most Frequently Asked Questions When's meal time?! Whatchya got for me? When's snack time?! Um, why is there poop in my sandbox hooman?! Astro Offer Newbies! Don't Miss these Brands' Debuts! Have you ever worried that you may miss an Astro Offer for a brand that you love? There's no need for FOMO. Save your favorites under My Brands and never miss a thing! Victor Super Premium Pet Food Victor debut their first Astro Offer in December 2020, and since then they have released an Offer for January and they have another available for February. Open Farm Open Farm debuted their first Offer in January 2021! Were you looking for a way to introduce your customers to the Gently Cooked line? Well, here is it! AppleLove & CannaLove by PetFX Are you in search of some lovely Astro Offers to pair with Valentine's Day? We got you! PetFX lept at the chance to publish Offers for their CannaLove and AppleLove brands that you and your customers can benefit from this February. Oxbow Yup! You asked and Oxbow has come through. The brand that all itty-bitty furry critters love the most has decided to venture into the wonderful world of Astro Offers this February. Now the little guys have a treat Offer to look forward to. February's Offers are Here! Enroll in February's Offers ASAP and start printing your Shelf Talkers and musing about your campaigns. Astro Marketing Promotional Calendars are coming soon! Tip: Are you looking for a way to keep your shelf-talkers in perfect condition and make it easier to hang them every month. Check out these acrylic sign holders! What are your thoughts about an Astro curated media kit complete with sign holders, posters, banners, and window clings! What tangible promotional items would you like to see in a media kit courtesy of Astro? Email us at and let us know!

Astro Fresh News | January 8th - 15th

This Week's Fresh News Includes: Astro Blog Article, Continue to Soar! Onward and Upward into 2021, to inspire you as you venture into 2021! Astro Offers: The Best Kept Secret of Astro Neighborhood Retailer Success! January's Astro Offers Pairing relating to the upcoming holidays Marketing Materials for January's Month-Long pet-related holidays Marketing Materials for January's Daily Holidays, January 1st through 31st Onward and Upward into the New Year! Last year was rough (or should we say ruff?), but with the new year underway, it’s time to celebrate! Appreciate all of the hard work you put in and prepare to cater to your customers in a whole new way. Embrace the power of shopping local, focus on community connections, and try out your fun ideas! Turning negatives into positives and using your strengths to your advantage is the key to a successful and growing business. Let's look forward to the new year and focus on a fresh start! Read on to discover ways your business can continue to grow as the rocket into 2021 picks up speed! Astro Offers: The Best Kept Secret of Astro Neighborhood Retailer Success Did you know that Astro Neighborhood Retailers who participate in Astro Offers, on average, increase their monthly MSRP sales by anywhere from several hundred dollars to several thousand? There were several Astro Neighborhood Retailers who increased their monthly MSRP sales by tens of thousands! 🙀 Astro Offers are by far the easiest way to give your business a boost, promote your favorite brands and products, and reward your loyal customers with exclusive deals to look forward to every month. 😸 Does your store subscribe to Astro Offers? Now is the best time to join the party, ahem, paw-ty! Astro Offers are Free for Astro Neighborhood Retailers to enroll in. The discounts and free goods rewarded to your customers are brand-funded so your credits are guaranteed. Astro even provides free Shelf Talkers a free My Astro Webpage, and a free Pet Owner Mobile App to help you bring your Offers to the attention of your customers. If you also subscribe to the Marketing Suite there are even more resources available to you to help promote these Offers to your customers. What about TIME? Astro Offers take mere moments to redeem during checkout if you are using Astro manually. They are integrated with several POS systems such as Petshop360, Vend, Lightspeed, Springboard, and etailpet. Astro Offers can be submitted and uploaded manually for those Astro Neighborhood Retailers utilizing POS Reports to report their customer's redemptions. Most Offers run for a full month so Shelf Talkers only need to be tended to once a month, and they can be printed and hung quickly. The My Astro Webpage and the Mobile App update automatically based on the Offers you are enrolled in and whether or not they are currently live. You got this! Astro Loyalty and our brand partners have your back. Let's continue to remind pet owners that it pays to shop local! Pair these Offers with some of January's Month-Long Holidays! Campaign Templates are available in your Astro Marketing Suite, and additional promotion ideas can be found in our Monthly Promotion Calendar Guides. Marketing Materials for January's Month-Long & Day-Long Holidays These holidays afford your business multiple opportunities to engage with your customers and your community. They can be used as vehicles to educate, bring awareness, and promote the services and supplies that you offer. Astro Promotional Calendars are created to inspire you! They include ideas for activities and promotions, marketing media, and materials to save you time, as well as educational links that you can share with your customers. Not sure where to find them? They are always published under the Blog menu of our Astro Loyalty website. All Marketing Calendars live within the Marketing Materials section of our Blog. As an Astro Neighborhood Retailer, you are more than welcome to use these ideas at your store, and if you are also subscribed to the Astro Marketing Suite you will have even greater access to the media materials described in these calendars and have a leg up on how to best utilize them. January's Month-Long Holiday Promotional Calendar & Guide January's Day-Long Holiday Promotional Calendar & Guide

Promotion Calendar & Marketing Materials | January's Daily Holidays

January is chock full of holidays that pair perfectly with Astro Offers, Sharing the Love Adoption Programs, and My Promotions. We have added new Astro Templates and Astro Images to your Marketing Suite that you can use to showcase your store's special promotions for the month. Our Knowledge Base is also full of helpful Social Media Tips. Are you on etailpet? We have started adding Holiday Banners to the Astro Image Library that you can use to decorate your online store. There are two new Astro Image Filters, "etailpet Shop Now Banners" and etailpet Secondary Banners". Show Now Banners are 1350x350px and Secondary Banners are 1350x290px. Table of Contents Jan 2: National Pet Travel Safety Day Jan 2: Happy MEW Year for Cats! Jan 8: National Labrador Retriever Day Jan 14: National Dress Up Your Pet Day Jan 22: National Answer Your Cat's Question Day Jan 24: Change a Pet's Life Day Jan 24: Peanut Butter Day Jan 29: Seeing Eye Guide Dog Anniversary Day Jan 2: National Pet Travel Safety Day This holiday gives you a great opportunity to share some knowledge about travel safety. The most common form of travel in the coming months will most likely be via car. Are your customers aware of the simple safety measures that they can take on their next family road trip? Does your store carry travel harnesses, seat belts, travel carriers, booster seats, seat hammocks, travel water bowls, travel anxiety remedies, etc? If so, make sure your customers are aware so they'll visit your shop before embarking on their next great adventure! Marketing Materials: Astro Holiday Template with Offer Elements and Text Element for sharing Safety Tips. Astro Images under Holiday, Facebook, and Instagram. My Promotion Idea: %/$ Off Travel Safety Supplies. Social Media Idea: Conduct a Facebook Live demonstrating how to fit a dog with a travel harness and how to safely secure him in a car. Jan 2: Happy MEW Year for Cats! Happy Mew Year for Cats Day was created by so cats could have their own little celebration for New Year's. Any cat owner will tell you that cats consider themselves to be far, far superior to us mere mortals. Cats are graceful, regal, and all-around fabulous. They most certainly feel entitled and deserving of all that life has to offer. Like the human version of New Year’s Day, it is on this special day that our feline companions can paws (get it?) and consider the ‘mewness’ of the brand new season and all of the purrfect possibilities it holds. In celebration of this holiday you can talk about the New Year's Resolutions that you imagine a cat would make, or the New Year's hopes and wishes they carry in their hearts as we start 2021. Some of the most common human New Year's Resolutions relate to getting healthy and fit, and we all know that cats are happiest and healthiest on moisture-rich high protein diets like raw and high-quality wet diets. This is also a good time to bring awareness to any cat charities that are close to your heart. Marketing Materials: Astro Template with Offer Elements, Sharing the Love, and a Text Element to share Information. Astro Images categorized under Holiday, Facebook, Instagram, etailpet Banners. Astro Blog to Share: Loving Cats a Little Extra to Wrap Up the Year My Promotion Ideas: $% Off Cat Toys or High Ticket Wish List Items like Cat Trees, Beds, Robot Litter Boxes. Social Media Idea: Ask your customers via a Facebook or Instagram post what their cat's New Year's Resolutions are and share one of your own. (My guys are hoping to improve their mind-control powers in order to encourage prompt feeding times.) Jan 8: National Labrador Retriever Day Ah, the Lab. These buddies are one of the most popular dog breeds in the United States, especially for families. They are intelligent, gentle, fun-loving, full of energy, master cuddlers, and just an all-around best-bud. On this day you can wish all of your Lab and Lab Mix customers a very happy holiday. You can also help play matchmaker for Labs currently in shelters and rescues in your area. The simple act of sharing a homeless dog's profile to your customers and followers may help one of these guys find a new home and a family find their new best friend. If your store is participating in Sharing the Love be sure to mention it! Marketing Materials: Astro Holiday Template with Offer Elements, My Promotion Element, and Sharing the Love. Astro Images categorized as Holiday, Facebook, Instagram, etailpet Banners, My Promotion Images. My Promotion Idea: A Free Treat to Any Lab or Lab Mix that visits your store on January 8th. There is a My Promotion Image in the Image Library ready to go for you! Remember to take advantage of this photo-op and post these pics of your Lab customers enjoying their free treats on your socials! Social Media Ideas: Share links to local Lab Rescues in your area or links to bios of Labs and Lab Mixes that are looking for homes. Ask your customers to share stores and pictures of their Labs and Lab Mixes! Jan 14: National Dress Up Your Pet Day Yay! I'm excited about this one especially since there have been so many funny videos and TikToks relating to the trend "Love It, Couldn't Wear It". This was started by some very fashionable dogs on TikTok who wanted to model some of the fun fashions that they weren't able to wear in public due to the quarantines in 2020. These video clips were some of the cutest and funniest to come out of the hardships of 2020. And now that we are in 2021 our pets can continue the trend and hopefully, we'll get to see some of these creative and fun styles out and about town. This holiday would be a great time to invite your customers to dress their pet up in their best digs and either post it to your social media or better yet, bring their pet to your store for a visit and an in-store photo-op that you can share directly on your social media! Marketing Materials: Astro Holiday Template with Offer Elements, a My Promotion Element, and a Text Element for you to explain your Event. Astro Images categorized as Holiday, Facebook, Instagram, My Promotion Images. My Promotion Ideas: A Free Treat to any Pet wearing clothes who comes into your store on Jan 14th. (My Promotion Image available in Image Library). Remember to take advantage of this photo-op and post these pics of your fashionable customers enjoying their free treats on your socials! Social Media Ideas: Invite your customers to post a picture of their pet in their best outfit and tag your page, or post their pic as a comment. Share a picture of your pet/s in their best digs. Share your favorite "Love it, Couldn't Wear it" clip. Jan 22: National Answer Your Cat's Question Day Oh my. We cat people know what happens when our cat's questions go unanswered. You're either in for an unwavering stare from across the room, something getting slowly pushed onto the floor, incessant me-yowling, or all of the above. If you're lucky you may have a cat that asks their questions with purrs and biscuits. However their questions are posed, January 22nd is the day to do our best to answer them! Today is a great day to open up a dialogue with your customers and give them the opportunity to relate their cat's questions to you and your knowledgeable staff in order to get some answers. What are some questions that you would imagine the typical cat would ask? How would you answer them? There are also some Cat Translator Apps that you can introduce your customers to for a bit of fun (while you do so be sure to mention your Free Astro Loyalty App!) My current favorite is called MeowTalk which was developed by a former AI engineer. Most cat parents are already familiar with the translation of the different meows, miaows, and merr-ows that their cat expresses when they need or want something. It's fun to log those translations in an app - doing so made me all the more aware of just how well they can communicate! There are even cats that have joined the Hunger for Words movement and have learned to communicate with their owners by pressing buttons, each button containing one pre-recorded word. BilliSpeaks is one of the more well-known kitty conversationalists on YouTube. Marketing Materials: Astro Holiday Template with Offer Elements and Text Element to share your info. Astro Images categorized as Holiday, Facebook, Instagram, My Promotion Images. My Promotion Idea: $% Off Cat Products that are the Answer to Kitty Questions Everywhere! Free Q&A Nutrition Consult. Social Media Ideas: Ask your customers to comment with their cat's questions that need answers! Share information that you can have learned regarding kitty communication. Astro Offers Pairings: These Offers are the Answers to Your Cat Customer's Questions! Jan 24: Change a Pet's Life Day This is the perfect holiday to promote your Sharing the Love adoption rewards program. What better way to change a pet's life than to adopt and welcome them into your home. Since you are able to offer Welcome Home Gift Bundles to these newly adopted pets you can be a part of the day their life was forever changed. You can be part of the reason that they will live a happy and healthy life from this point forward. Reach out to your local foster friends in rescue and let them know about your Sharing the Love program and that you want to help facilitate positive change in a pet's life! Another way that a pet's life can be forever changed for the better is by helping them find the diet and enrichment that best suits their unique needs, and no one is more qualified to do that than you and your team! A healthy, species-appropriate diet, can add years to a pet's life and increase the quality of the life lived. This is a great holiday to educate your customers and empower them to be better pet parents. If their pet has a chronic health condition that has stumped them and their vet, as someone familiar with nutrition, you may have the know-how to help remedy it. We see this a lot when it comes to allergies, stiffness, obesity, and anxiety. Marketing Materials: Astro Holiday Template with Offer Elements, Sharing the Love, and a Text Element for you to share information. Astro Images categorized as Holiday, Facebook, Instagram, Adoption Images My Promotion Idea: $/% Off the products you carry that you feel are best designed to create the greatest positive change in a pet's life. Social Media Ideas: Share posts relating to your favorite local rescues and shelters. Share educational info that can have a positive impact on a pet's and their family's life. Jan 24: Peanut Butter Day Here's a fun one for ya! Our dogs sure do love peanut butter. It's the extra special treat that gets results, whether that's teaching a tough trick, keeping them entertained during a Zoom call, or hiding a pill. Granted, peanut butter, just like any special treat, is not something that a pet should have in excess. However, there are numerous ways that we can increase the nutritional value of peanut butter while still maintaining it's Yum factor. The secret I have found is to use peanut butter as an ingredient rather than as the entirety of the treat. If a pet owner is looking to entertain their pup for a long period of time adding a peanut butter schmeer to the inside of a chew toy and then adding some banana, and maybe a scoop of greek yogurt, then freezing everything until solid, is a great way to sneak some healthy probiotics into their snack. Another option is to simply combine the before mentioned ingredients and create peanut butter fro-yo pup-sicles! Don't forget about the peanut butter treats and supplements that you offer at your shop! There are even CBD companies that have started incorporating peanut butter into their supplements such as Pet Releaf's Edibites, Super Snouts' Nutty Butters! and Austin & Kats Bites. There are also pet fro-you brands that have added peanut butter to their fro-yo treats such as The Bear & The Rat and Boss Dog Brands. Marketing Materials: Astro Holiday Template with Offer Elements, a My Promotion Element, and a Text Element for recipes and tips. Astro Images categorized as Holiday, Facebook, Instagram, My Promotion Images. Astro Offer Pairing: Austin & Kat's January Offer My Promotion Idea: $/% Off all Peanut Butter Treats! (My Promotion Image available in Image Library) Social Media Idea: Share your favorite peanut butter treat recipe and invite your customers to share pics of their pets enjoying their favorite peanut butter treats! Jan 29: Seeing Eye Guide Dog Day History: The demand for seeing-eye dogs first came about following World War I, when many soldiers returned blinded. The first school and training program for seeing-eye dogs was in Germany but didn't last long. Dorothy Harrison Eustis, a dog trainer from Philadelphia living in Switzerland, wrote an article about the German guide school, for the Saturday Evening Post, in 1927. Morris Frank, a blind man from Nashville, Tennessee, came across the story and wrote to Eustis asking if he could come to Switzerland and train with and get a guide dog of his own. He said he would return to America and teach others about guide dogs if he was able to get a dog, and Eustis agreed he could come. After coming back with a female German Shepherd named Buddy, Frank started The Seeing Eye dog school. He started it on January 29, 1929, on the same day that we now celebrate Seeing Eye Dog Day (aka Seeing Eye Guide Dog Aniversary Day). He started the dog school in Nashville, but it was moved to New Jersey in 1931, where it is still in operation. [source] Today you have the opportunity to do some good and bring awareness to the members of your community. As we just learned together, The Seeing Eye dog school does a lot of good work for those who need the help that only a specially trained dog can provide. 100% of all donations go directly to fund their work. The Seeing Eye is non-profit philanthropy supported by donations from individuals, corporations, and foundations, as well as bequests and other planned gifts. The school receives no government funding. Thanks to the generosity of supporters, the fee charged to students have remained unchanged since the 1930s. -- $150 for their first Seeing Eye dog or $50 for a replacement dog. Military veterans are only charged $1. My Seeing Eye dog taught me to walk tall and raise my face, without fear, to the sun, wind, and rain... she taught me to trust again. Seeing Eye Guide Dogs, or any service dog for that matter, who is matched with a handler in need qualifies for a Welcome Home Adoption Bundle courtesy of Sharing the Love. If you are helping a blind handler celebrate being matched with their seeing-eye dog you may choose "Private Party Rehome" as the Adoption Source when filling out the Adoption Form. Make sure to include the name of the Guide/Service Dog Agency in the text field asking for the Name of the Agency and specify in the Additional Notes field that the dog who received the bundle is a Service Dog and therefore qualifies for the reward. Marketing Materials: Astro Holiday Template with Text Element and Sharing the Love (yup, Seeing Eye Dogs who are matched to a handler qualify for a Welcome Home Adoption Bundle!). Astro Images categorized as Holiday, Facebook, and Instagram. Social Media Idea: Share a post about The Seeing Eye and invite your customers to investigate how they can help in light of the commemorative holiday. January's Month-Long Holidays January's Month-Long Holidays National Train Your Dog Month Walk Your Dog Month Adopt a Bird Month Unchain a Dog Month

Continue to Soar! Onward and Upward into 2021!

Last year was rough (or should we say ruff?), but with the new year underway, it's time to celebrate! Appreciate all of the hard work you put in and prepare to cater to your customers in a whole new way. Embrace the power of shopping local, focus on community connections, and try out fun ideas! Turning negatives into positives and using your strengths to your advantage is the key to a successful and growing business. Let's look forward to the new year and focus on a fresh start! A Fresh Start for the New Year The year of staying in and ordering online has had an effect on every business. The big-box stores of the world are generally cushioned by the wealth of their conglomerate so they weren't necessarily faced with an urgent call to adapt and grow. However, smaller pet supply stores that thrive off of local business were met with an initial drop in foot traffic despite being designated as essential. These savvy business owners realized 2020 was the time to act! They realized that in order to stay relevant they had to meet these changing times head-on and adapt. Now is the time to celebrate all that you've accomplished this past year, appreciate the positives, and focus on how to continue to grow your business in 2021! Renewed Love for Shopping Local Though the past year has been hard on small local retailers, a silver lining always shines through. In this case, it's the rebirth of the shop local sentiment! As businesses struggled and people saw their friends and family lose their hard-earned livelihood or watched their favorite local business shut down, they decided to step up to the plate and support their community. In the wake of the pandemic, over 82% of shoppers said they were willing to spend a bit more money to support a local business as opposed to giving their money to a large corporation. This shopping local renaissance is good news for local retailers that are trying to get their foot in the door in the new year. Focusing on local prospects will help create a loyal customer base and grow your credibility and value in the community. With this in mind, celebrating the renewed interest in shopping locally and preparing your business to attract potential customers should be a huge priority. Take advantage of the turning tides while you can! Connection to the Community Another facet of this situation to be celebrated is the desire to be connected to the community. The lockdowns of 2020 started to have a profound effect on our collective psyche. Once it was over I couldn't wait to get out of the house and talk to, well, anyone! Being a member of a community has profound benefits to mental and physical health and supports overall well-being. People with meaningful relationships and social connections to their community generally have boosted longevity and are healthier as they age. While this connection between community involvement and well-being has been studied long before the difficulties of last year, putting this connection into practice is more important than ever. As life returns to normal (or as close as possible), people's desire to make social connections and support their communities will be at an all-time high. Growing your business in this environment will help you make long-lasting customers and give you the opportunity to show the community that you're there for them. Promote your ability to provide a mutually beneficial relationship that will enrich the community for the benefit of everyone involved. Show prospective customers that you care as much about the community as they do! New Ideas in the New Year A newfound love for local shopping and a strong sense of community are wonderful things that deserve to be celebrated and made use of, but a new year still needs new ideas! The above sentiments may drive people into your store at a higher rate or increase interest in other ways, but making the correct preparations is essential in order to engage with prospective clients and retain customers. Get a fresh start with some fun ideas that will boost customer interest and give your business a new flavor. As people who want to shop locally come to check out your store, encourage them to return by making your business personable and memorable. Marketing and content creation are great ways of doing this. If there's a pet holiday coming up, make it a month-long celebration and show that you appreciate your customers' furry friends! Consider taking part in our adoption program Sharing the Love and give your customers a reason to come back after adopting their first pet. Enroll in some of Astro's exclusive manufacturer funded Offers. Astro Offers are FREE for our neighborhood retailers to participate in. They are an easy way to reward your customers for their loyalty and they give them something special to look forward to each month. Astro provides complimentary Shelf Talkers and the My Astro Webpage to help you promote your chosen Offers to your community. Have you considered venturing into the world of e-commerce? eTailPet is able to offer small business owners a turn-key 24/7 online store that integrates with their inventory and their Astro Loyalty Frequent Buyer, Offers, and Loyalty Point Programs. This gives customers the convenience of shopping online and gives them the opportunity to support their favorite local business! The bottom line is that taking advantage of the things that make you special as a neighborhood retailer can make you shine even brighter. Remember, large corporations will never understand your community the way you do, and this puts them at a major disadvantage in terms of marketing, outreach, and customer interaction. What do your customers like and appreciate about your business? Not sure, it's cool to ask!

Loving Cats a Little Extra to Wrap Up the Year

This time of year is home to many holidays, but once again cats claim the attention they deserve by taking up the whole of December for Cat Lovers Month! It's no secret that cats will tell you exactly what they want and need from you, but let's explore some of our feline friends' amazing qualities and appreciate all the things they do for us. Your Cat Improves Your Mental Health People are finally taking mental health seriously and gaining an understanding of just how important your mental state is to your overall well being. Lucky for the cat owners of the world, spending some time with your purring pal can improve your state of mind and help keep you sane. Petting your cat for as little as 10 minutes has the power to reduce the stress hormone cortisol throughout the day. A great stress reliever is sitting right on your lap! The companionship of a cat also prevents loneliness and provides social support. Coming home to your pet every day makes you feel less alone and gives you the responsibility of taking care of another living thing. Taking care of pets helps us grow our empathy and kindness and gives us the chance to step into a role that's very important for our psychology - caregiving. Caregiving provides us with a sense of satisfaction and usefulness, and caring for a cat requires less maintenance than the alternatives! If you want to boost your mental health and make a loving friend, it might be time to look into local adoptions and rescue programs. Physical Health and the Power of the Purr Want to lower your blood pressure response to mental stress? Look no further than the top of the cat tower. The social support that you receive from your cat makes dealing with mental stress easier and keeps your blood pressure down. You'll not only feel less stressed, but your physical responses to stress won't be as extreme, which keeps you healthier. It has also been found that people who have owned cats were 40% less likely to die of a heart attack. This is probably due to the stress-reducing power of cats, as lowering blood pressure and reducing other symptoms of stress at any point in life can help prevent heart problems down the line. Your couch buddy can extend your life and improve your health, if that's not a praise-worthy power, what is? Almost all cats purr between the frequencies of 25 and 140 Hz, the same frequencies that have been shown to promote bone growth, wound healing, and more. For our feline friends, this probably isn't a happy coincidence, but a useful trait that was developed over time. Cats are known for healing relatively quickly from broken bones, and they generally have low cases of joint problems and bone cancer. This superpower is thought to benefit humans in the same way, so the next time your cat sounds like a revving engine, take some extra time to cuddle them and take advantage of their magic purr. How Your Cat Shows Love We love our cats for all the things they do for us, but how can you tell your cat loves you? A big part of love is trust. You can tell that your cat trusts you and feels relaxed around you by observing simple things like where they sleep, if they purr when laying on your lap, and of course, the famous slow blink, which means they are at ease and happy around you. Keeping in mind the genetic history of cats, we can understand some of their more interesting displays of affection. When your cat brings you small items, or even their own prey, they're offering you their catch. They want to take care of you and offer you a valuable gift - time to praise your kitty for providing for you! How would you survive without them? Another display of affection that has a hidden meaning is their habit of bonking their head on you and rubbing their face on your body. While this might also provide a quick face scratch, the main purpose is to leave their scent and claim you as their territory - other cats be warned. To speak your cat's language, give them a slow blink from across the room, reciprocate the face rubs, and help them with their hunting instincts by playing with them. You might look a little ridiculous to the other humans around, but who cares about that? Celebrate your loafing, loud, and loving kitties this month by getting them some extra toys and treats at your local pet store! During Cat Lovers Month, let's put some extra effort into appreciating these amazing creatures and all they do for us.

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