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In the beginning, Pup Scruffs made designer neck wear for dogs, offering 40 different designs and fun dog-inspired patterns, said Katie Bernotsky, one of the owners of the company. However, because it launched at the end of March when most people were concerned about the coronavirus disease, the owners realized it wasn't a good time to launch dog apparel. Bernotsky and her husband began wearing the neck wear as masks to prevent the virus. They started to get compliments while wearing them. People wanted to know where to buy them. The owners decided to sell the neck wear as neck wear for dogs and as masks for adults, toddlers and children. The company offers 10 sizes for dogs and three sizes for people (adults, children and toddlers). By refocusing marketing efforts, the company's sales quadrupled overnight and Pup Scruffs are shipped all over the country.
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"We have received so much positive feedback from customers that these masks have been the perfect solution for families," Bernotsky said. "People have been purchasing them to match their children or pets."
The masks are lightweight and breathable, made from a polyester/spandex blend. They are easy to wear and comfortable. Even though the economy is at its worst and unemployment is through the roof, the company has been able to flourish by thinking quickly and providing a solution during the pandemic.
Pup Scruffs donates a portion of all sales to the Lynchburg Humane Society in Lynchburg, Va. Within two weeks, the company donated $5,000 to the shelter.
"We were so excited to be able to do this especially during this time when the shelter and the animals needed it the most," she added.
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