As part of the governments relaxing of lock down measures and attempts to prevent a second spike in corona virus infections, face masks will have to be worn in shops from Friday 24/07/20. In response to this latest change in regulations we have updated our corona virus proceedures.
All customers will have to wear a mask to come in the shop from Friday until further notice. We appreciate that some people are exempt. However we have no way of checking if someone is in one of the exempt categories or not, so this is a very difficult situation for staff to manage. To keep it fair to everyone and to avoid any argument, only customers wearing masks will be able to come inside the shop. Exempt customers will be served at the door or can use our FREE home delivery service as most exempt customers (not all) are more at risk from the virus anyway and staying home would be safer for them. We have posted the following note on the door for anyone who does not receive a message before hand, although it has been widely reported in the media anyway.
The wearing of masks does reduce the risk of spreading the virus so it also allows us to let more customer groups in the store at a time (currently limited to one customer group). However we will still be limiting the total number of customers in at any one time, at our discretion. Due to this we are still not allowing general members of the public in to just look at animals with no intention of making a purchase.
In the last few weeks, as lock down measures have been eased and more people are out and about we have had too many non customers being abusive and aggressive to staff. We have been told to F off by an actual customer when he was asked to wait until the lady at the counter had left before coming in, had abuse hurled at staff when people have come in to kill time and have not been allowed to look at the animals as we have had genuine customers outside waiting, had grown men push past staff and shove their face next to them whilst they were feeding the reptiles, just to get a better look and then storm out when asked to maintain a safe distance. The list is getting longer every day. We have always had a zero tolerance policy to abuse of staff and anyone behaving in this manner will be leaving immediately. The virus has not gone away and in order to stay open we must follow government guidelines no matter what the public thinks of its efficacy or even what we think ourselves. It is a difficult situation for retail staff to find themselves in and we will not be engaging in arguments as to whether or not a mask is necessary. Staff do not have to wear masks under the regulations but to make genuine customers more comfortable and to head off the “why should I when you’re not” comments from the non customers; we will be wearing masks as well when customers are present.
Thank you in advance for your understanding as we all try to come to terms with the change in requirements.
July’s offers are now avaialble in store and on line. A bit late this month but better late than never. All offers avaiable whilst stocks last until the end of July 2020 and FREE local delivery available on all orders over £10.
We are often asked “where do you get your livestock from?” The truth is that the answer is not straight forward. We stock a very wide range of livestock and there is not a single suplier in the country that supplies a fraction of that range. Some animals we breed ourselves, although not many now due to ill health over the last few years, some come from local breeders that we have used for a number of years, some come from “breeder collectives”, groups of breeders who pool excess stock to sell to pet shops, some come from larger suppliers (again, suppliers we have used for years and can trust). There are also some sources we do not use. Rodent farms (we have visited one of these and wouldn’t use them on ethical grounds), accidental litters resulting from people buying mis-gendered pets from a well known pet supermarket (high risk of sibling mating), random people cold calling and trying to sell us animals (possibly stolen). We visit our suppliers homes or business premises to make sure we are happy with the conditions the animals are being bred/housed in first.
One Sunday in June we took the opportunity afforded by the slight easing of lockdown measures and a beautiful summers day to visit George and his partner Claire for a barbeque in their garden and to collect two crested geckos, bred in their collection at the college they work at. Whilst there I took the opportunity to take a few photos to show what one of our suppliers facilities looks like. This college teaches a variety of equine, agricultural, horticultural and animal courses. As well as taking classes, George is tasked with looking after the collection of animals kept on the college, including developing their environments.
The existing aviaries are stocked with a variety of small birds, including Zebra finches supplied by Angell Pets. There are also large new aviaries currently being developed with different levels of plant growth. The corona virus pandemic has put a hold on populating these as there are currently no students on site but when things return to normal new birds will be sourced for these.
Where the old aviaries are sited there is also a large compound of other enclosures housing Meerkats, ferrets, chinchillas, guinea pigs (some supplied by Angell Pets for breeding), rabbits, tortoises and others.
Inside the building is a rodent room with rats, mice, hamsters, gerbils, degus, chipmunks etc. Another room houses the aquatics section with cold water and tropical fish (some supplied by Angell Pets – angelfish and sydontis and some from which we have had supplies – swordtails and guppies) and terrapins (although these are to go outside into an adapted pond enclosure soon).
In the reptile room are frogs (including a huge African bull frog, grey tree frogs and Brazilian milk frogs – supplied by Angell Pets), salamanders and musk turtles (tank and turtles supplied by Angell Pets). Also there is a large enclosure for a common boa, corn snakes, royal pythons, bearded dragons, a water dragon (supplied by Angell Pets), leopard geckos (some supplied by Angell Pets), crested geckos (breeding colony) and skinks. In a separate room, all to itself is an adult male green iguana.
Back outside at the rear and sides of the buildings and enclosures are several paddocks. One contains the old duck pond (where the terrapins are going to go) with some ducks still to be transferred down the site to the new, larger pond. Next door are the chickens, where my old hens spent their final days when I became to ill to look after them. Behind are some of the pigs. Further back are the goats and alpacas and further back still are the sheep and llamas. coming back round to the other side of the compound are the donkeys and a pony. There are more livestock in the agricultural department, where the stables, milking sheds and farrowing pens including cattle and horses. We have visited these facilities before but my legs weren’t up to it this time. It’s a big site!
Down towards the entrance is the horticultural department, new aviaries and large duck pond. Some impressive growing tunnels and planting areas, not at their best at the moment due to the lack of activity on site with the lock down but still looking good in the bright sunshine. This is where some of the plants we have on sale in our shop for bio-active set ups come from, including those in the leopard gecko set up on our counter.
As well as the crested geckos we have already sourced from George, when the guinea pigs start breeding we will be having their excess stock. If the leopard geckos breed again we will also have these. Once the aviaries are up and running properly I am sure the birds will start breeding and we will also source some of our birds from here too. The purpose of the collection is to teach animal handling, husbandry and welfare not to breed animals commercially. However in discharging these duties there will be excess animals produced and I am sure having seen the excellent conditions the animals are kept in and the time, effort and indeed money that is spent on their welfare, they are a good fit with our mission statement of promoting ethical and responsible pet care.
The crested geckos mentioned are now on sale in our shop as are zebra finches from the same cohort as those supplied by us for the aviaries. Incidentally we also supplied the original birds for the aviaries at Hartpury college just after George finished his degree there, from memory they had cockatiels, budgies, Java sparrows, zebra finch, Japanese quail and Chinese painted quail.
We are in the process of developing new aviaries and animal enclosures in our Hucclecote store so I am sure our relationship with this excellent supplier will continue to grow.
We are well into the lockdown and hopefully coming out the other side. The Gloucester pet shop has remained open throughout and obviously we always have our webstore. This months offers are available in the shop (one customer group at a time), for telephone order and collection in store, free local delivery to Gloucester and Cheltenham, for a small delivery charge to Stroud and the Forest of Dean and normal courier charges UK wide.
Fortunately we have been able to keep our Gloucester pet shop open throughout the lock down period. We have done this by monitoring government advice, customer behaviours and expectations and especially the needs of those in our community particularly at risk from the virus. As the situation has evolved we have adjusted our opening times, provided new services and restricted non essential sales.
At the weekend the situation changed again and in view of this and changes to the products we can offer (livestock), the associated welfare needs of this livestock and changes in our customers’ behaviours, we have made further adjustments to our opening hours to cope.
A few weeks ago we reduced our opening hours to 2pm closing. This was to enable us to do FREE local delivery. A lot of our customers could not or would rather not come to us during the peak of the pandemic. We had also stopped selling animals (non essential) and actually had very few left in stock. Feeding, watering, cleaning, health checking and monitoring of the livestock is actually what takes up most of the time in the business. We were therefor able to close to do the deliveries because of the time saved by not having a lot of livestock in. As I posted below, this has now changed and we are selling animals again and so we need this time back.
Also many of our customers now feel more able to come to us and actually prefer it because they can browse the shop better than they can the website. Quite a lot like the excuse to get out after weeks of being shut in. It helps them that they can do this safely because of the control measures we already had in place in our Gloucester pet shop in the period prior to lock down. These measures, allowing social distancing remain in place. This has reduced the demand for FREE local delivery, enabling us to reduce the time spent on this service. It is still available to those requiring it but we will be starting the deliveries later in the day. In order to ensure we can still get to all the customers that really do still need us to deliver we have increased the minimum order from £5 to £10. This is to hopefully reduce the amount of deliveries further (we were delivering to some very local customers who weren’t self isolating every other day with orders a couple of pence over the minimum each time).
With the reduced time for the deliveries we have also introduced a delivery schedule, to avoid delivering to opposite ends of the patch on the same night and wasting most of the available time in one long journey. We will continue to monitor the situation and make changes if any of this causes our customers any issues.
The new schedule for FREE local delivery from our Gloucester pet shop is below along with a couple of sensible conditions.
Property must be sack truck assessible. We will leave the order at the front door of the main property, telephone the contact number given (or knock, or both) and wait until someone collects the package. We will make only one delivery attempt. If you are not in, or do not answer, the order can be collected from our shop from the following working day onward. If you can do orders to collect please do so as delivery numbers will be limited for the time being. Click and collect is available on our web store but FREE local delivery orders MUST be done by telephone on 01452 501882 and paid for in advance by card. Sorry, no cash on delivery. Cash purchases can only be done in store.
Minimum order £10 Orders must be in by 3pm for same day delivery.
Throughout the lock down we have had an embargo on the sale of animals from our store as non-essential items. No one should have been leaving home for any reason that was not essential. Food for your pet is essential, as are a number of other items, bedding, hygiene products, medicines, toys (essential for the well being of your pet) etc. A new pet was not essential, so unless it was to replace a deceased partner of a social species, or you were in the store buying your normal supplies anyway we had stopped selling animals. We knew this embargo was coming in advance so we stopped restocking with animals before the lock down happened so for the most part we didn’t have any in stock anyway.
The government has now moved to a new phase. The emphasis is moving away from “stay at home” although you should still do this if at all possible, and focusing more on responsible social distancing whilst trying to gradually return society back to normal, over time and with very strict monitoring of the results of any changes. We feel that in line with this change we are now in a position to start offering our livestock for sale again.
This is not a case of everything returning to normal. We already have a social distancing policy in place at our Gloucester pet shop. Only one customer group in the shop at any time, queuing kept to a minimum outside the shop with customers keeping at least 2m apart. Staff maintaining 2m from customers at all times. Click and collect ordering available by telephone and on line in our web store and FREE local delivery for telephone orders. We will be keeping all these procedures in place and this will have an impact on the returning sale of animals.
In normal times we actively encourage prospective owners to interact with their new pet (hold where appropriate), prior to purchase. Under the corona virus restrictions we cannot return to this at present as it would break the social distancing rules. You may ask to look at an animal in its enclosure and where possible staff will try to place the animal in a carrier for you to look at, both of these can be done whilst maintaining 2m between staff and customers but I’m afraid that is the limit of interaction before purchase. You will not be able to hold or inspect the animal further. Our staff will do all the normal pre-sale inspections and of course our livestock policy (the most generous we have found) remains in place to offer you protection.
This is the only way we feel we can return to selling animals whilst maintaining protection for our staff and customers. Please note that this service is available to customers only. We still have a policy of no browsing the animals. We have wide variety of livestock and it attracts a lot of casual visitors. During normal times this is not an issue (unless the “free zoo” visitors get in the way of genuine customers or, as happens from time to time, are disruptive – in which case they are asked to leave). However during the pandemic they represent an unnecessary risk to staff and customers and would also be preventing genuine customers from entering the premises. So for now the “Free Zoo” remains closed. We have had a couple of instances where members of the public have become abusive and/or aggressive with staff when asked to leave if they are not making a purchase and just want to “look at the animals”. Fortunately the number of these instances have been very few but they should not have happened at all. We have a zero tolerance policy toward abuse of staff and will remove from the shop anyone who decides that the middle of the worst crisis to hit the country since the war is a good time to start trying to throw their weight around. As I say it’s rare and we appreciate the rest of our community who understand the need for these restrictive practices at this time.
We update our livestock list on this website daily (or when it changes) and our web store also has all our livestock displayed with prices. All animal sales remain in store only. We do not sell animals to anyone we have not met and chatted to, about the care and welfare of the animal, first.
Finally, customers often have to have a think before making the decision whether to buy that particular animal. Quite right too, you should never rush into purchasing a particular pet. We would ask however that whilst making the decision you leave the store if it is going to take a few minutes as we cannot allow anyone else in at the same time as you so there could be a queue outside.
Difficult times call for difficult measures and we know none of this is exactly an ideal “customer experience” so we thank you all in advance for your understanding as we try to remain in business whilst protecting ourselves and our families as well as you and yours.
May has started well, nice weather and at least the hope of an end in sight for the lockdown. Fingers crossed. We now have our monthly offers for May available in store, for telephone orders and online. Please remember to call us at the store on 01452 501882 if you require FREE local delivery. You can order on line for courier delivery or to collect in store but you need to call us for FREE delivery to Gloucester and Cheltenham. We can also do delivery to nearby areas like Stroud and the Forest for a small charge (£5).
As always our monthly offers can prove very popular and can sell out in store or at the wholesalers quite quickly so do order early to avoid disappointment. Also the FREE local delivery is getting busier so please get orders in early for same day delivery. We are at the point where we may have to defer late orders until the next available slot.
Our APL ranges of pet foods are very popular. From the entry level, hypoallergenic Super Premium range, to the higher meat content natural diet, Grain Free range. Many customers have moved onto these foods from poorer quality supermarket brands and noticed a marked difference in their pets appetite, digestion and coat. More have moved from over priced, supposedly premium brands and found the same thing, as well as more money in their pockets. No food will suit every single animal but the feedback from the vast majority of customers making the move has been very positive. APL Superfood is a fine addition to these existing ranges.
We are now launching a new range of foods under our APL brand. Our new APL Superfood range. This food is even higher meat content again than our existing Grain Free range and will suit customers feeding the highest end brands such as Canagan and Orijen but at a much better price point.
Orijen Original, an 85% meat, high quality ingredient food retails in our store for £71.99 for the largest 11.4kg bag. Canagan, a British sourced and manufactured 60% meat food (Orijen is Canadian), retails in our store for £67.99 for the largest 12kg bag.
APL Superfood, a British manufactured, high quaility ingredient food will retail in our store for £59.99 for a 12kg bags. The 2kg bags are only £1.00 and £2.50 more than the existing APL Grain Free range.
Of course you may be using some other brand of grain free kibble but want to try a different brand to see how it compares, both in quality, condition, digestibility and price. If you have any questions please do contact us and we will be glad to help.
Customers have been complaining and the media have been reporting, some shops are putting up prices as demand for popular items goes up. Happy to say that we have not put up a single price during the crisis and this month we have our regular wholesalers offers available so actually some prices are going down.
The easiest way to take advantage of these offers is to call us on 01452 501882 and pay by card over the telephone for collection in store or FREE local delivery. Customers not living in the local area can order online for normal courier delivery (charges will apply).
Stay at home and stay safe – The Angell Pets Team.
We have noticed in the last couple of days that there has been an increase in sales to individual customers. Customers that usually buy one bag of dog food a month are buying two or three, customers that usually buy three boxes of locusts are getting six oir eight. Obviously this is so that if they are forced to self isolate in the event of them catching Corvid 19, they can be sure they have enough supplies in for their animals. Whilst this is understandable it has meant that some regular customers are finding that their normal supplies are not on the shelf when they need them and although it only takes us a few days to restock and we have no issues with any suppliers, it does lead to more people panickling that they are going to be without.
In an attempt to both alleviate the need to “stock up” and to help out if any of our customers should actually need to self isolate (i.e. people that do have or are suspected to have the virus or vulnerable groups such as the elderly) we are introducing free home delivery for anyone who has had to go into quarantine. If you are genuinley having to self isolate and cannot get out to buy supplies, call us on 01452 501882. You can order and pay over the telephone (subject to a minimum order value of £10), we will then deliver to your house, give you a call to tell you we are there and leave the product at your door for you to collect when we have gone. No need for any contact.
Please note, this service is only for genuine cases of self isolation. We are a small family business and are not currently set up to do a full home delivery service at the moment due to my own on going health conditions. If you are not self isolating we have a large FREE carpark at our shop in Hucclecote. We just want to do our bit to help out those unable to make it to us because of the current Corona Virus situation and to reduce the impulse to bulk buy and spread the available supplies amongst all our customers. Thank you in advance for not abusing this service.