LAKE WYLIE — Pet parents in the Lake Wylie area have a new option for finding supplies with the opening of Bright Eyes & Bushy Tails at LakesideWest shopping center.
Joanne Styslinger said when she moved to the Clover area seven years ago from New York, she found pet shopping options and supplies were limited here.
“You have to travel,” she said, “and businesses don’t like to compete with big box stores.”
But Styslinger and her siblings – sister Margaret Styslinger, who moved from Memphis to Clover to join the business, and brother Bill, who lives in England – decided about a year and half ago to share their love for pets by opening in 1,800 square feet – 1,400 for retail and 400 for grooming – near Lake Wylie Bowl n’ Bounce.
“I’m not afraid of competition,” said Styslinger, retail manager. “I’m here to get the customer what they want.”
Bright Eyes & Bushy Tails opened Nov. 5 with a Lake Wylie Chamber of Commerce ribbon-cutting celebration. Joanne Styslinger said the store has 1,871 types of items on the shelves. The shelves are lined with a variety of foods for cats and dogs, as well as treats, toys and other supplies with more, like birdseed, coming in soon.
“I try to cover everything we possibly can,” she said, “and I don’t know where we’re going to put it all.”
Styslinger said variety is the key. Her store carries a few products nearby competitors, like PetSmart in Steele Creek and Walmart, have, “but I want customers to come here and see the variety of products available, especially for cats.”
The self-professed “Crazy Cat Lady” who has 11 at home, said while felines are the No. 1 household pet, the pet industry doesn’t treat them that way.
“Even I didn’t realize the variety of foods available for cats,” she said.
The Lake Wylie store is split about 50/50 for cats and dogs, with 52 feet of cat food space.
“They’re family members,” she said of cats and dogs.
It’s her sister, Margaret, though, who is the dog lover. She oversees the grooming area with two groomers on staff.
“I like it,” she said. “It’s a nice, happy job.”