Q&A with Victoria Park, proprietor of Park Pet Supply:
What initially drew you to Southeast Atlanta and/or how have you seen it change since you arrived?
I have lived in this area since the mid 1990s. I was born in Atlanta, and I have always preferred this part of town, because I like the vibe and the people who make up this neighborhood. There has always been a strong sense of community here--and I feel privileged that Park Pet Supply has been serving the Southeast Atlanta community for almost 18 years.
This has always been an affordable neighborhood for cool people, and I fear that may be changing with the amount of development around us, the traffic, and the increasing housing prices. I want this neighborhood to stay diverse and accessible to everyone. I do appreciate that there are not stray animals on every corner any more, though.
So many folks have pets (specifically, dogs) in Grant Park, Ormewood Park, East Atlanta -- what is it about this area that inspires folks toward pet ownership?
I think this area attracts enlightened people who have a strong sense of community and a caring attitude, which translates into caring for pets, too. Also, many homes have yards, which is a great incentive. There are so many parks and places to walk a dog that it only makes sense to adopt a homeless canine buddy and go from there.
Why do people rely on your shop's expertise to support the health of their pet? Why choose your shop over... say... Petco?
First of all, traffic getting from this area to Petco is a nightmare most days, so we are much more convenient, and our prices are usually lower. I have a great staff that really cares about pets, and they want to help you find the best solution for your baby. Everyone here knows their stuff, and they can answer so many questions about food and nutrition. We have a great selection of all types of pet food, so there is something for every pet and every budget. We have a big parking lot behind the store, and we are open long hours for your convenience. We have a self-serve dog wash with 3 stations and full service grooming by the Furside next door. My focus is great customer service and providing a pleasant shopping experience for human and canine (we have occasional feline visitors, too).
Why is important for businesses to give back to the community they are located in?
We all have to support each other to make it work. I give my support to various neighborhood organizations that are doing amazing work to make our community better. For instance, we offer APD officers a discount card as a way to thank them for their service to the community. Many of our customers are involved in these schools and organizations, and it is a responsibility of local business owners to give back to the folks that support their business. Keep it local! I am so proud of all of the local businesses in this area that sponsor events, schools, pet rescue, churches, etc. The big box stores won't always do that.
If Ormewood Park were a dog, what breed would it be and why? Or maybe OP is a cat? Or a bunny? You tell me.
Ormewood Park would be a shaggy beautiful mutt, constantly wagging his tail and friendly to everyone he encountered.