Following a trend in which American consumers increasingly see their pets as family members and are spending big bucks on products and services that emphasize animal health and well-being, 55-year-old pet retailer Petco is rebranding as a health and wellness company with a new look and a “major marketing campaign,” which will kick off in early 2021.
As a result, the retailer said it will no longer sell human- and bark-activated shock collars and is using the hashtag #StopTheShock to get the word out.
“Shock collars have been shown to increase fear, anxiety and stress in dogs, and we believe there’s a better way,” Petco CEO Ron Coughlin said in a statement.
Instead, Petco is encouraging positive reinforcement training methods, including a new online training program and classes led by more than 1,200 Petco-certified dog trainers. The retailer is also offering a free 60-minute online introductory course to a limited