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Clayton Humane Society launches online store

By Maria Jose Subiria

msubiria@news-daily.com

Area residents can now help the Clayton County Humane Society by buying from its online store.

The Clayton Humane Society launched the store, which sells items emblazoned with the group's logo, about three months ago. The store can be found at www.claytoncountyhumane.org.

The items for sale include Clayton County Humane Society ornaments, wall clocks, tote bags, stonewashed caps, keepsake boxes, barbecue aprons, T-shirts for dogs and T-shirts for people.

"Obviously, it is a very specific interest to have ... but we are hoping people who support us and support our work, we are hoping those people will make good use of it," said Robin Rawls, vice president of the board of directors of the Clayton County Humane Society.

Rawls said the web site was created as way to help the Clayton Humane Society pay veterinary bills, and buy pet food, cat litter and other items.

"We are actually going to use it [the online store] as an ongoing fund-raiser, hopefully," Rawls said.

According to Rawls, the online store is operated by CafePress, a company that assists small businesses in running online retail outlets. When customers order online, CafePress supplies them with their Clayton County Humane Society item.

The cost of each item includes a base price from CafePress, and an upcharge from the Humane Society, said Rawls. The upcharge benefits the society.

Each time the Clayton Humane Society reaches a level of about $100 in upcharges, CafePress mails it a check, said Rawls.

"This is perfect, because we don't have to keep our items in stock ... it [keeping items in stock] is very hard for us," she said. "It is very easy for us not to have to handle our inventory."

Rawls said that because of financial constraints, the Clayton Humane Society hasn't yet been able to heavily promote its new online store. She said information on the store will be included in the society's next newsletter, which is published twice a year.

"So far, we haven't had a lot of orders, because not a lot of people know it is out there," she said.

Rawls said she was inspired to create an online store for the Clayton County Humane Society after helping with a yard sale for another shelter in the metro-Atlanta area. All of the shelter's volunteers wore their humane society's hats and T-shirts, Rawls said.

"I thought we [the Clayton Humane Society] had to have that," she said.