Over the last 12 years, First Choice Pet has been instrumental in providing the American southeast with quality natural diets and other products for dogs and cats.
A dozen years ago, good quality natural pet foods were hard to find. That’s what prompted entrepreneur Phil Ray to start a business that specializes in distributing high-end natural foods and other products for dogs and cats. “I was motivated by a need for better pet food at a time when none could be locally sourced,” he says.
The result was First Choice Pet, which opened its doors in Miami, Florida in 1998. The company distributes not only high-end natural pet foods and treats, but also supplements, skin and coat care products, grooming tools, cat litter, toys, bowls, beds, leashes and much more. “We were a pioneer in introducing the market to the newest and healthiest pet products throughout the southeast US,” says Sales and Marketing Manager, Sarah White-Parks.
The natural pet product market has grown exponentially over the last decade, and First Choice Pets has grown right along with it. “We continue to forge ahead in offering the largest selection of natural pet products,” says Phil. “We want to continue to educate and support retailers when it comes to making healthy product choices.”
Each product First Choice Pet sells is carefully assessed to ensure it offers the best quality in nutrition, ingredients and even packaging. “We ‘test drive’ all products and take the time to analyze and discuss each item as a team to see if it fits our mission statement,” explains Phil.
The company doesn’t stop at products when it comes to animal health and welfare. Phil has two dogs of his own – a post-hurricane rescue Lab and a golden retriever that was formerly a stray. “We also support five no-kill non-profits through donations,” he adds. “We make it a point to help the local community through donations for families in need or when disaster strikes, such as Hurricane Katrina and the earthquake in Haiti.”
First Choice Pet takes an eco-friendly approach, and has an internal “Green Team” dedicated to reducing office waste. “It’s about consuming products that are bio-efficient and have a positive purpose for everyone as a whole,” says Sarah. “We use recycled shredded paper for packing materials and even cool our warehouse with a huge fan that uses far less energy than A/C, without any pollutants. We are trying to market via the web and email to lesson our carbon footprint even further.”
Needless to say, Phil and the staff at First Choice Pet love what they do. Helping others do what they love continues to drive them every day.