The Cave Creek pet store gets to know its customers
By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski
Mike Murray says his Cave Creek pet store, Bonnie’s Barkery, goes beyond food and treats.
He and his staff offer personalized service, nutritional guidance and a full array of natural, organic and holistic food and treats. Freezers hold raw foods for dogs and cats. Grooming services are available.
“Each product we carry has gone through an extensive review before it is allowed in our store,” Murray says. “All products are free from any corn, wheat, soy or animal byproducts. We do our best to match the needs of your loved ones with a product that fits within your budget, helps your little ones live a healthy and happy life.”
Thanks to a recent store expansion, Bonnie’s Barkery offers massage therapy. Holistic veterinarian Dr. Jodie Gruenstern oversees the anesthesia-free teeth cleaning clinics and sees patients one day a month.
“She does seminars for us as well,” Murray says. “She’s been a real asset for the store to have. She’s educating us, the staff and the customers as well. She’s really well rounded, but we have a well-rounded store.”
Five years ago, Murray purchased the 15-year-old Bonnie’s Barkery. They will celebrate Bonnie’s Barkery’s anniversary in October.
“It’ll be a big celebration,” says manager Cijai Bianchi. “Typically, for these events, we invite a lot of rescue organizations because we believe in giving back.
“I think at our spring event, we had six or seven rescues here. I think 12 or 14 dogs were actually adopted. Then we give 10% of the revenues for that day back to the rescue organizations. Giving back is a huge thing for us. We partner with three or four rescues throughout the entire year. We have two of them come in each month and then another one comes in sporadically.”
Like Murray, Bianchi is a strong believer in Bonnie’s Barkery. She was a customer who fell in love with the store.
“CJ started working one day a week and then two days a week and then eventually full time and she’s been a real blessing to have,” Murray says.
“It’s nice to have somebody who has good taste. It’s a double-edged sword for me because I have such a wonderful staff that I am able to spend more time in the back office figuring out ways to grow the business instead of being the face of it.”
The employees bring their pets to Bonnie’s Barkery as well. Bianchi has a French bulldog.
“We have Frenchie parties after hours,” she says. “The last one was really fun. We did an Academy Awards party, where we had a red carpet and we hired a photographer. They received statuettes.”
The staff at Bonnie’s Barkery wants to get to know their customers and their furry pals. That way, they can suggest sensitivity tests, food and natural remedies.
The perks are plentiful at Bonnie’s Barkery. Customers can celebrate their fur babies’ birthdays with birthday cakes, cupcakes, cookies and photographs. Murray is adding a patio to Bonnie’s Barkery to host events like ice cream socials and happy hours.
“We’re incorporating a birthday club where you can bring your dog in and get a selfie,” Bianchi says. “We’ll make them Instagram and Facebook famous. We have clothing. We have toys, treats, all sorts of different types of food, fancy dog bowls, regular dog food and, yes, ice cream.”
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