THE Hunter region’s furry friends have been given an early Christmas present with the opening of Tamworth’s Petbarn store at the weekend.
Across NSW, Petbarn is in partnership with the RSPCA to give dogs and cats their fur-ever homes, by temporarily homing them at the stores until they find their new families.
RSPCA chief executive officer Steve Coleman was on hand for the opening and was pleased a few dogs found new homes through the store.
“We want to maximise the opportunities to rehome animals that are rehomable,” he said.
“This is the sixth petbarn outlet that has opened and we are delighted it has opened in Tamworth because there is a great network of RSPCA branches in the region and this is a really good opportunity to move their animals through this process.”
As part of the partnership, Petbarn has installed the cat and dog enclosures while the RSPCA supplies the pets and oversees the training of the staff.
“The customer must understand they are adopting an RSPCA animal from the RSPCA so they are microchipped, vaccinated and desexed and there is a process that needs to be followed,” Mr Coleman said.
The animals are currently coming from Hunter shelters, but will be coming from the local region once a staff member is recruited in Tamworth, which is expected to happen by the end of January.
“We will then start drawing animals from Moree, Gunnedah, Tamworth, Glen Innes, Armidale and Inverell branches,” Mr Coleman said.
“This will complement what those branches are already doing and any additional animals they need rehomed we can now put through Tamworth Petbarn. People see the partnership as a no-brainer.”
Store manager Victoria Declabrough said the store had been in the pipeline for at least nine months.
She said the store’s focus was on cat and dog food, animal supplies for small animals, reptiles and fish.
“The only live animals we have are our fish and hermit crabs and we work with the RSPCA to have cat and dog adoptions to their forever families,” she said.
“They sleep here at night time, we walk them three times a day and senior management will be coming in and spending a few hours with them on Christmas and Boxing days. They are here until we find them a good home, not just any home, and there are no time limits.”
If you’ve always wanted to be able to take your pet shopping with you, this is the store for you, with pets allowed in the store on a leash, so they can choose their own Christmas presents, or maybe a new friend for Christmas they’d love to share their home with.
The store stocks premium cat and dog food brands as well as its own super premium brand and is open seven days except Christmas and Boxing days.
Ms Declabrough said they would be extending their hours leading up to Christmas.
And, if your dog would like to look its best for Christmas, Petbarn also offers a DIY dog wash.