The role of the Independent Pet retailer in Lockdown

Pet Pavilions’ Ryan Johnson chats about the changes in the pet industry, not least with the choice for pet parents these days, compared to only 20 years ago.

But how why is there so much choice? Is it to fulfil a market demand from pet parents, or is it that manufacturers sell us developing trends and being very clever at marketing?



Of course through lockdown pet retailers were considered as essential and luckily remained open. As Ryan explains: “The social distancing restrictions have impacted and we’ve had to adapt accordingly. Whether that’s organising safe and free deliveries for the elderly for example.”


Lucky for dogs that the groomers were allowed to open before human hairdressers, yet strict rules remain in place meaning there’s a long waiting list.


Ryan continued: “Many owners tried to do DIY grooming at home, arising in the ‘lockdown’ haircuts. Many dogs had indeed suffered through lockdown after their coats had become overly matted, and then being shaved completely, rather than painfully de-tangling their coats. This can cause too much pain and anxiety.”


The Hampstead store being the newest of Pet Pavilions’ is really an Aladdin’s cave – packed with stylish accessories and a vast range of chews and food, including a freezer packed with raw options too.


We discussed the difference in customers and their dogs between the Chelsea based store, the Wimbledon store compared to Hampstead and as Ryan explained: “In Hampstead and Wimbledon we generally see bigger dogs, probably because we’re so close to the Heath here, and the Common in Wimbledon.”


Also, Ryan agreed that he’s seen pet parents getting younger in the past few years, whether it’s to do with more people generally working from home, or the growth in dog walkers and creche services. And of course, the issue of getting to know your dog and maximising your time together – even walking your own dog!


Possibly a silver lining of Lockdown is that pet parents will have had time to get to know their dogs better and enjoy their time together.


We chat to Gina who heads up the grooming division who chats about choosing the right dog for your lifestyle and whether regular grooming is something you have factored into their on-going healthcare. We chat about the difference between Labradoodle compares to a Standard Poodle, Miniature and Toy Poodles and why you hardly ever see a Poodle.


Ryan also explains why the trend is for natural, ethical and eco-conscious product like Earth Animal’s range of NO HIDE Chews. The big thing is that people are more focussed on their pets after lockdown, and pet parents love to spend on their four-legged companions. It seems that the ‘hound pound’ is worth £28Billion in the UK.

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