Consolidation is Coming to Pet Care in San Francisco

November 30, 2015

Big business and venture capital are once again dominating the world of pet care in San Francisco and at the national level.

At the national level, all eyes are on Petco and PetSmart who are doing some serious dating with the possibility of a marriage at some point. Sure one of their parents (i.e. the private investors who now own the individual companies) might object. Also possible is that they won’t find anyone to marry them should the Federal Trade Commission object. Even with those potential hurdles, the possibility of these behemoths joining forces has everyone talking, and many are very nervous.

In San Francisco, Wagly Corporation (not to be confused with Wag Pet Hotels) has purchased Fog City Dog of San Francisco and is reported to have also purchased Smilin Dogs of San Carlos as they attempt to break into the San Francisco pet care world.

So what does this have to do with you and your pet? Honestly, we’re not sure. As a retail consumer you might have fewer options, since some Petco and PetSmart stores are bound to be closed (assuming you shop at one of the big boys now). Even if you don’t shop at either of these big stores, your experience at your locally owned store could be affected if manufacturers and/or distributors feel compelled to change behavior, which might limit the availability of certain items.

As a consumer of pet care in San Francisco, we’re also not sure. Wagly hasn’t said if they plan on keeping both Fog City Dog locations open or are consolidating operations in the current California Caster building on 17th Street (a location that is not zoned for use as a “kennel”). We also haven’t heard what will happen to the Fog City Dog employees — either based on Wagly’s decision to retain or not retain, or their desire to work for a larger company than they are accustomed to.

So, what do you think? Is this consolidation good for you as a consumer of pet care in San Francisco? As a pet parent? As a San Franciscan?  Thanks for reading!

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