Family and community are the foundation of our lives in Conefrey’s pharmacy. As a community pharmacist, my team and I take pride in the care we show the families who come into us. It occurred to us earlier in the year that we had overlooked one important family member – the four legged one!
A Stroke of Inspiration
Around the Pearse Street area, we see our customers out every day walking their dogs. They are also regular visitors to the photograph machines, to print out pictures of the beloved creatures. In one case where a dog had been killed, it was the grandchildren who came into us with a collection of all the photos they could find looking for help to compile a photo book for their granddad. These are the really important moments in life, and when it was pointed out to us we were not catering for pets, I wasn’t sure where to start.
We grew up in a family that loved pets; we always had little Jack Russells at home. Thirty years ago, in the days when the health and safety laws were slightly more relaxed, my own dad, the founder of Conefrey’s, kept a budgie in the dispensary.
Teaming With Local Pet Businesses
From chatting to my suppliers and the customers, I started to get an idea as to how we could help pet owners, primarily cat and dog lovers. We looked at the conditions that they are affected by, and a plan started to come together. I also started to think like a pet owner: What other services would I need for my pet? We decided to incorporate a dedicated ‘Pet’s Corner’ in the shop and attached business cards to the products, informing customers of our intentions. We connected with a local vet, a grooming parlour, and Pet Sitters Ireland. Our intention being, if a pet owner needed a service outside of what we could provide, we would be able to point them in the right direction locally.
As I have said, it is all about family and community for us and this is another way to support local businesses and use our shop as a forum to help them too. We are also making contact with a pet photographer and a micro-chipping company. We have all learned so much from meeting new people in the pet care industry, and it is a really enjoyable part of the job. We feel as though we are now in a better position to help, and we are better informed.
How Conefrey’s Can Help Your Pets
So what do we do?
- We can help our pet owners treat fleas and ticks with spot on treatment, and also advise on the best treatment for houses and bedding.
- We can help with skin conditions, down to those caused by stress in animals- they are more sensitive to stress and changes in their environment than you would think.
- We provide worming tablets for cats and dogs and also have a liquid for puppies.
- We have a special treatment for dogs’ ears, to clean them, and keep them healthy- and can show our customers exactly how to carry this out.
- When we are faced with an animal health problem outside of our scope, we have a vet on hand for referrals. If we can’t help, we will refer our customer to an expert who can.
The next time you visit your Pharmacist, if they don’t know about your pet, tell them! They are part of the family, after all. It is an important service, and your pharmacist most likely will be equipped to help you deal with your pet’s health problems. It will save you time and money, and may be the beginning of a beautiful friendship between your pharmacy and your pet!
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