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Hounds and Co. Unleashes a New Look In-Store and Online


Local pet supplies store Hounds and Co. partnered with SPARK Business Works to launch a new brand and website, while staying committed to its mission and values.  

Hounds and Co. Client QuOTE 2

Serving the community with pet nutrition and personalized service, Hounds and Co. has always been a favorite destination for pet owners in Portage, Michigan. 

Among their loyal customers was local Kalamazoo resident Kristen Armbrister. Proud owner of two Westies, Kristen became a long-time customer after finding a special food brand at the store that resolved one of her dog’s stomach problems. 

In 2023, Kristen Armbrister was presented with the unexpected opportunity to buy the store from the original owners. She was excited to grow the independently-owned business while continuing to live out its mission– providing natural and organic nutrition options to keep beloved pets happy and healthy for their whole lives.

A Fresh Start: Undergoing a Brand Transformation 

One of the first undertakings for new owner Kristen Armbrister was replacing the store’s original name– Paver Pet Supply– as it was tied to the original owner’s family name. 

For the new name, Kristen wanted to infuse new energy and modernize it. For guidance, her team turned to local digital marketing and web design agency SPARK Business Works to lead their rebranding journey.  

To start, the SPARK team surveyed the existing customer base to understand their shopping behaviors and satisfaction with the store. 

With those valuable insights in hand, SPARK worked closely with Kristen Armbrister and store manager Amber French to land on the new name: Hounds and Co.

“We fell in love with Hounds and Co. because it was pet-focused first,” Amber shared. “We also added the Co to ensure that people knew that we serve pets beyond dogs like cats and birds.”

When it came to the details of the new brand, the Hounds and Co. team wanted its logo and colors to be clean, simple, and modern. They also wanted the brand to reflect the friendly, warm, and knowledgeable personalities of the store’s ownership and management. 

“I wanted a brand that represented my love for animals and nature. The SPARK team helped take that vision in my head and make it a reality,” explained Kristen.

The last piece of the rebrand included a new motto: Well Fed and Well Loved.

“Our primary focus is the pets that visit our store,” commented Amber. “When our customers come in, many tell us their pets are spoiled. We like to correct them and say they’re well loved.” 

Hounds and Co.’s motto speaks directly to their values and commitment to providing the best possible nutrition for pets.

Hounds and Co. Brand Reveal
New logo and branding for Hounds and Co.

Hounds and Co. then prepared to unveil its new name and brand to their current customers and local community. However, with the announcement of new ownership, some customers were initially concerned that their beloved pet store might change their commitment to natural and organic food products.

“We wanted our customers to know that while we were changing our name, we weren’t changing our values or our commitment to sourcing natural and organic products,” explained Amber.

With the support of SPARK’s team, Hounds and Co. launched the new brand with a campaign across social media channels and email.

Hounds and Co. Social media examples
Social media examples for Hounds and Co.

A Modern Makeover: From the Outside to Online 

After the success of the rebrand, the Hounds and Co. team then set out to further improve their in-store and online experience. To grow the pet store, Kristen wanted to focus on attracting new customers and expanding their current product and service offerings. 

One of the first tasks was installing new outdoor signage at their brick-and-mortar location to make the store more visible and inviting to potential new customers. 

“Before, our brick building didn’t have anything about pet supplies on it. Not a single thing,” explained Amber. “We often heard people say they didn’t know we sold pet supplies.”

Working with SPARK’s design team, Hounds and Co. was able to add new outdoor signage for their store and dog park, including: 

  • A new roadside sign
  • Exterior vinyl window graphics 
  • Dog park entrance and customer notice signs
Hounds and Co. Outdoor Signage
New outdoor signage at their store location in Portage, Michigan

“Now, potential customers can easily spot our store when driving by. The SPARK team also did a great job of ensuring the designs of our window graphics would match our website,” Kristen shared. “Everything looks and feels cohesive, whether you’re visiting us in person or online.”

Revamping the Website and Offering Online Ordering 

When you walk into Hounds and Co., two things are clear: One, they offer high-quality and selective food brands that are often hard to find, especially in big-box pet stores. Two, their friendly staff is passionate about helping customers select products that match a pet’s individual needs. 

But, their old website didn’t reflect that same experience – it only provided basic information and appeared outdated.

Turning to the SPARK team again, Hounds and Co. began a complete website redesign to ensure that the welcoming nature and product knowledge of its in-store staff also transferred to an online experience.  

Now, the new website is a testament to the personalized service and high-quality products that Hounds and Co. is known for. It includes: 

  • Easy site navigation
  • Product catalog with real-time inventory information 
  • Online ordering and in-store pickup
  • Ability to request special ordering
  • Ability to join their loyalty program
  • Giving back program that donates to small, local rescues 
  • Educational resources and guides to selecting the best food for your pet 
Hounds and Co. Website Revamp
New website and mobile design

“Working with SPARK was a ton of fun! They really understood our vision and the customer experience we wanted to create,” Kristen praised. “We’re so thrilled to now offer online ordering and real-time listing of our inventory for our customers.”

Kristen also mentioned that the next step is to ship their products. Since Hounds and Co. carries brands not often stocked in retail chain stores, it’s not uncommon for them to serve out-of-state customers who regularly drive to Portage, Michigan to get their special brand of dog food. 

Hounds and Co. Product Example
New online ordering

A Bright Future

With the rebranding effort and the launch of the new website, Hounds and Co. is set to make an even bigger impact on the Kalamazoo and Portage communities. Their commitment to exceptional service and quality products remains unwavering, and now, their online presence truly reflects their dedication to their customers and their beloved pets. 

Visit the new Hounds and Co. website at to explore their wide range of pet supplies and experience the brand refresh firsthand.

Do you need help with a brand refresh and website redesign? Reach out to the SPARK team today!

Contact SPARK Business Works

More from the author

Jill Hufford
Marketing Strategist With 10+ years of experience, Jill works alongside SPARK’s leadership, sales team, and UX/UI designers to ensure that marketing strategy and execution meet and exceed the business’s goals. connect on Linkedin

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