Before Julie Hunter started Bend Pet Express in 1993, her dog became very ill. She worked with a vet locally and looked at what she was putting in her dog's body versus what options were available. Her research and continued education resulted in the birth of what would go on to become the Bend Pet Express we all know and love today.
"From day one, 25 years ago when I started this journey, I think the holistic approach that we take—we're very careful with the products that we carry, with the ingredients, with where the ingredient are sourced from—that's all a reflection of building that health from a different level into your pet. It's always been our number one goal to serve the community in that way. Give them another option," Hunter says.
In Central Oregon, we care deeply about what we put into our own bodies, and it makes perfect sense that we would take that same priority and apply it to our pets. Bend Pet Express wins this award year after year for good reason—a focus on our community, our pets and the quality of the ingredients and products we put into their bodies.
"As always, it's actually just an honor," Hunter says of winning Best Pet Store again this year. "We strive to give back and to serve this community. We love this community and we want to do as much as we possibly can for this community."
Hunter attributes the win and the customer service they have become known for to the employees at both the westside and eastside locations.
"They carry this whole community and they are the ones that make the one-on-one relationships with the customers. Retail is frustrating at times and can be really hard, but they are so respectful of this industry."
2nd Place: Mud Bay