Southwest Austin’s Best: Pet Food, Pet Supplies, Treats & Toys

Southwest Austin is my home. As a pet sitter, being in such a pet-friendly city, there are literally hundreds of pet supplies, dog food, cat food, pet toys and pet treat stores around. Who do we recommend? Who are the most experience? And what toys and treats should you give a look at based on Ace Pet Care’s experience? Should I use organic food? What are the best toys for a smaller breed of dog? Are treats a good thing to get my dog? And how many? And what brand? With so many questions, it is a good thing we, as Austinites, have many choices to find our answers. Also, be sure to read until the end. We have an offer for a very popular dog toy, a free download and a lot of info for you!

Austin Pet Stores for General Needs

Below, you will some of the truly best pet stores in the southwest Austin area; some all over Austin. Whether you have dog food needs, wondering about a new wet cat food to try, you might even have questions about leashes, harnesses, toys and scratching posts…these pet businesses definitely have your answers.
Healthy Pet Austin Map

Healthy Pet

Healthy Pet, 4301 W. William Cannon Dr, are a holistic pet store. It is probably my favorite pet store, and the one we used to shop in the most. I’ve gotten out of the habit of shopping in pet stores for anything other than toys because both of my dogs are on prescription dog food that we have to get from the vet. Healthy Pet has a wide variety of the specialty high end products, treats, supplements and toys. Every time I’ve gone into the store there are new selections of specialty treats and toys. The store is clean and pets are welcome. They have a very friendly Frenchie named “Biggie” who helps in the store by greeting customers. Food and supply selection in the store is good. Sales people are friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. Healthy Pets will soon be opening a second store in North Austin. They accept the Go Local! card which offers a discount on purchases of 5% on food and 10% on everything else.
Tomlinson's in Austin Map

Tomlinson’s Feed & Pets

Tomlinson’s Feed & Pets, at multiple locations, sell natural and healthy pet products. The staff are always very knowledgeable, and willing to make suggestions for foods and supplies. Meaning, they listen to your needs and can direct you to products that are compatible with your pet’s health and age-related issues. Tomlinson’s has a Pet Club that you can purchase which offers a 10% discount on products and monthly specials.

PetSmart & PetCo

PetSmart and PetCo are chain stores, dealing with pet supplies, sales and pet service needs. They sell food, toys, pet supplies and caged animals and fish, They have doggy daycare, boarding, training, grooming and veterinary care services, specific to the stores mention and the location. I like the stores for dog toys, leashes and supplies. As well, they both have very friendly staffs when I’ve visited. There are also events and training that you can take part for both.

Pet Snacks and Treats

For the most part, I really think that treats are junk food. They add unneeded weight to our pets in most circumstances. However, I understand that most pet moms and dads like to give little ones for a good deed, a bad day, or “just because”…and that is perfectly understandable. The very best treats for dogs are fresh veggies like carrots, celery, tomatoes, green beans or dried yams, or bites of fruit, (like apples, cantaloupe, blue berries, pears, banana). For cats, cooked carrots or peas, steamed broccoli, cooked beef/chicken/fish, canned fish and cooked eggs make healthier treats.These examples all have less calories, and more nutrition. I’ve yet to meet a dog that didn’t like the Freshpet food and treats. The direction behind this brand is that “if we, as humans, eat healthy, why shouldn’t our pets?” (paraphrasing, of course). They are available at HEB, Central Market, Healthy Pet, etc. Their website has a store locator service. Even in my years of pet ownership, and pet sitting, it is really difficult to judge what treat a pet is going to like. Just like people, they all have their own preferences. If you go to the Healthy Pet treats products section and click on dog treats (and cat treats), you will see many brands; all of them are very good. Choose what you feel would be a good place to start, and then try new flavors to find their favorites.

Pet Toys

There are many types, brands and style of pet toys available. While general desires exist in any pet, breed or type, your mileage will vary. The best course of action is to start with, much like everything else discussed, something you feel like they like, and then work from there.

Fun dog toys

I think the Dog Kong toys are terrific, and my favorite, but again, not every dog likes a Kong. Planet Dog toys are good choices. too. But, the dog that doesn’t like a Kong probably won’t like the Planet Dog either. Some dogs, (especially the hunting breeds), like the stuffing-free or semi-stuffed toys because they hang like dead animals when the dog holds them. Some dogs like water bottle buddies because they like the sound it makes when they chew on it. Most dogs really love toys that squeak. FREEBIE! Would you like a FREE dog Kong recipe book? Click the link below to grab yours.
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Cat toy suggestions

Some cats like the cat teaser/cat wands, and some just ignore them. I’ve seen some cats go crazy for the interactive toys like the Turbo Scratcher, but others won’t play with them. The same thing happens with stuffed toys, noisy toys and even catnip-stuffed toys. A lot of cats like the real fur mice. You can also pick up Play-N-Squeak mouse hunter because they like the sound it makes. Light points are also another fun toy that most cats like.

Simple purchase-free solutions

Cats and dogs also are like younger kids; you don’t need to break the bank on toys to have fun. Below you will find a few other choices that you could make for some fun, cost-free toys. Boxes are always one of the best toys that you can introduce to you cat, and sometimes dogs. I’ve had cats that I could just wad up a piece of paper into a ball, and that kept them very happy. Dogs, on the other hand, love knotted rope…any size. Both cats and dogs will also find balls (smooth and noisy for dogs, soft and rolling for cats) an endless source of amusement in most cases.

Support your local pet supplier

Enough cannot be said about Austin, and it’s love of animals. And with that love comes a lot of pet business experts in the area. Who you choose to trust can get complicated. But, I hope the above helps you out in your search!