A thirteen year old animal lover has launched a ‘pup-up‘ shop online, entitled iPups – an acronym for ‘island pups‘.
Zan Valere, a third form student of St.Ursula’s has been a dedicated volunteer at the Ark Animal Welfare Society of Barbados for nearly three years, after declaring an interest in veterinary studies. Given her appreciation of the work of the Ark, and its need for ongoing support, part proceeds from all items sold via iPups, will be donated to the Ark. Valere plans to also contribute to her own tuition to attend ‘vet camp’ next summer.
“Having traveled, especially to Canada, and seen the preferred treatment of dogs there including facilities that allow pets, and the frequent sight of animals being walked, wearing shoes and clothes, I look forward to doing so much more for animals and their owners here. iPups is my first step to providing useful, safe and cute accessories and pet supplies,” Valere explained.
At the moment, iPups is accessible totally via Facebook, where orders can be placed for collection or delivery. The initial line of products offered include Halloween costumes for dogs, bow-ties and hair accessories, toys and items for animal lovers to declare their support of the adoption of rescue dogs.
“iPups is also a page that provides tips for better animal care – and endorses the adoption of dogs from our local shelters,” said Valere, who frequently uses the #adoptdontshop hashtag. Her savvy social media skills have increased having managed the Ark’s Instagram presence, since its inception.
iPups is set to host its first event – a Pup-A-Ween, as scheduled for Sunday October 29, 2017 from 3:30pm to 5pm at the Ark. There will be treat bags and prizes for a participation fee of $20 per pet. To register, message iPups via its Facebook page.
Valere is the daughter or Renatta Mohammed and the late Emile Valere. Mohammed describes iPups as an ideal, real life introduction to business 101 for her animal loving entrepreneur. In 2015 Valere was among the early sitters of the 11+exam, who emerged with admirable results. She is also the winner of several art, essay and environmental competitions. The family has adopted three dogs who all have a strong social media presence.