Portland, Ore.-based Zupan's Markets has added new high-tech doghouses at its three stores for its pet owner customers via New York-based pet-tech startup DogSpot. Customers can use the app-connected houses—which are temperature-controlled with air conditioning, a puppy cam, an app-controlled lock and fresh-air ventilation—as a safer and smarter solution when shopping with their dogs, rather than leaving them in the car or tied up on the street.
"Zupan's Markets is committed to providing our customers with a grocery experience like none other in Portland and Lake Oswego," said Mike Zupan, president and CEO of Zupan's Markets, in a release. "We don't want any member of the family to feel left out, which is why we could not be more excited to introduce DogSpot's high-tech houses, sharing a safe and secure solution for our food-loving customers shopping with Fido."
DogSpot co-founder and CEO Chelsea Brownridge’s own experiences as a “dog mom” inspired her to create DogSpot. "People who have dogs get it—you don't get a dog to leave them cooped up inside all day," she said. "The best part of their day is going out on walks around town, heading to the dog park and spending time with you. We're making it possible to say, 'Wanna go for a walk?' more often and more safely than before."
Zupan's has secured an official advertising partner for its DogSpot houses—which use a vet-grade UVC light to sanitize the houses between each use—with fellow Portland-based pet food maker Portland Pet Food Co., which is promoting its all natural dog meals and treats on the sides of the units.
"We appreciate and share Zupan's and DogSpot's commitment to the safety and health of dogs,” said Portland Pet Food’s top dog, Kate McCarron. “These high-tech houses are a great alternative to tying up a dog outside the store or leaving your dog in a car. We applaud new innovative options that bring health and safety to our community, and we are pleased to be a partner of Zupan's and DogSpot, who share our vision."
Zupan's Markets customers can easily access the houses through the DogSpot app, available for both iPhone and Android users, where they can view the locations in their area and even reserve a house 15 minutes prior to arrival. The app also provides a live "puppy cam" feed of their dog inside the house and includes a house temperature.
The cost to use the DogSpot houses is 30 cents per minute and is available at all three of Zupan's Markets locations in Burnside, Macadam and Lake Oswego. Customers can download the app and sign up for free.