Lisa Pearce’s dog, Pepper, sleeps on a bed made of pop bottles, and it’s a lot more comfortable than it sounds. The bottles have been recycled into a soft, fluffy fiberfill called IntelliLoft that cushions dog beds available at Green Pawz, a new ecofriendly pet supply store in Maple Village. “Healthy pets, healthy planet—that’s kind of our motto,” says Pearce, who co-owns the store with John Scherer.
“Everything in the store, if we can do it, will be recycled,” promises Scherer. That includes everything from dog beds and chew toys to leashes and collars. They also stock all-natural pet food for dogs, cats, and other small pets.
Scherer, forty-five, an Ann Arbor native, has owned his own sheet metal distribution company for two decades. Pearce, forty-two, spent the last eighteen years managing the Prickly Pear restaurant on Main Street. When a mutual friend introduced them two years ago, both were ready to do something different. Their decision to open Green Pawz was galvanized by last year’s national pet food scare, in which dozens of animals died after eating tainted food.
“We didn’t want to be a small Pet Supplies Plus,” Pearce says. “We wanted people to be able to walk in and know that everything is chemical free, and no preservatives, no by-products, and feel good about buying.” Their environmentally friendly approach extends to the interior of the store itself. “All our shelving is reclaimed lumber,” she says, “and we did a water-based dye on the floor.”
Green Pawz was scheduled to open in late December near Plum Market, and Scherer says proximity to the food store was the main reason he and Pearce decided to locate there in Maple Village. “Our market would be Plum Market’s market,” says Scherer. “We’re going to basically mirror them as far as what we’re doing—everything ecofriendly, but . . . catering to dogs and cats and pets.” And he points out that with the new Karnik Pet Lodge right behind the center, “dogs will be coming in and out of Maple Village all the time.”
Green Pawz, 211 North Maple (Maple Village), 222–9622. Mon.–Sat. 10 a.m.–9 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
[Originally published in January, 2009.]
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