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Purina mobile initiative aims to pamper pets

Purina?s new iPhone application is using the phone?s location-based capabilities to help pet lovers and their four-legged friends.

Nestlé Purina Petcare?s ?petcentric places? is a free download for both iPhone and iPod touch users. Consumers also can share photos of their pets in a photo gallery and are encouraged to add and rate pet-friendly places and services available on the application.

?Our strategy for petcentric places is to provide on-the-go pet owners with a one-stop source of helpful information that can enrich the lives of their pets ? from local veterinarians to dog parks to pet products and pet-friendly travel accommodations,? said Laura Lee, digital brand manager at Nestlé Purina PetCare, St. Louis

Nestlé Purina PetCare, part of the Nestle S.A. global food company, is a global provider of pet food. The company promotes humane education, responsible pet care and community involvement.

The Purina application provides a way to find pet-friendly locations and activities in the United States, such as lodging, dog parks, dog beaches, campgrounds, amusement parks and travel accommodations.

The application also provides search services to find veterinarians, animal shelters, pet sitters, kennels, groomers and dog walkers.

?At Nestlé Purina, we're always looking for new ways to reach our consumers with information that can enrich the lives of their pets and strengthen the bond between pets and their owners,? Ms. Lee said.

?Our new iPhone application allows us to provide information to mobile phone users at their fingertips, at any time and place they want it.?

Purina currently has SMS alerts with tips for dog and cat owners. Users can log on to this site and enter their information to receive the tips.

Through Limbo's advertising-supported text message alert service called Limbo Lowdown, Purina quickly and easily tapped into significant SMS inventory, with more than 1 million opted-in mobile members averaging 28 years of age for both males and females. Twenty-five percent of the audience is 35 years of age and 56 percent are female and 44 percent are male (see story).

Purina is also home to a mobile landing page with tips, photo galleries and hotline numbers.

Petcentric places, which is not ad-supported and is free from Purina, is another extension of Purina?s effort to target on-the-go pet owners.

?We're making petcentric places available for on-the-go pet lovers who use mobile phones as a source of information about their pets,? Ms. Lee said. ?Our research shows that a growing number of pet lovers are using their mobile phones for fun and information, and "petcentric places" is a great way to connect with them.?