How did a girl without a southern accent start a business in Sandfly? When I met Barbara Justice for the first time, I knew I wanted to know more about this fascinating friendly dog lover. It’s truly a love story that has traveled from Europe, all the way to Isle of Hope.
Barbara met her husband John, who was pursuing his Master’s study abroad, in her hometown of Linz, Austria. John finished that degree and is now an alumni of the University of North Carolina, proudly sporting the tar heel colors wherever he goes.
Barbara and John would frequently visit his grandmother, Jane Naismith on Isle of Hope, where the family would gather. John’s mother, Donna Justice grew up on Isle of Hope, so all the stories and love of the area quickly rubbed off.
Barbara created the Retail Retreat because, “I love dogs and love being my own boss!” She got many ideas for her future shop while living in Fernandina Beach, and then brought her concept to the neighborhood she loves so much. In fact, when they came to the shopping center in Sandfly, they grabbed the last space available at the time.
Healthy Nutrition for Your Pets
Barbara creates fresh baked goods for dogs and even creates custom “pup cakes” for birthdays.
“Before we opened, we spoke with veterinarians and experts,” Barbara said. As a result of all her research, ReTail offers foods with no artificial flavors or colors, and has creations just for owners managing weight issues, bad breath and even motion sickness for their dogs.
Each of the treat recipes at Retail Retreat are registered with the Georgia Department of Agriculture. Each recipe is compliant with the regulations of a full breakdown of fiber, protein, and other ingredients. Barbara’s bestseller is called the “Sao Pawlo,” with peanut butter. True confession – I ate one (make that two) and they are good! Retail Retreat dogs probably eat better than most humans.
All dog foods sold in the store are from family owned companies, who have high quality standards. Why pay for premium brands? Many dog owners may not know that a popular brand was recently pulled off the market which contained propylene glycol, the main ingredient in antifreeze.
The boutique carries a lot items from local and regional artists and retailers. “I source all my goods from small independently owned companies – not the big warehouses,” said Barbara. Looking around the store with all the unique items, it’s apparent she takes time making unique purchases.
By Cathy Rodgers, CathyChats.com