People in Clintonville, in resident Tina Probasco's opinion, love their pets and care about the environment.

People in Clintonville, in resident Tina Probasco's opinion, love their pets and care about the environment.

So why not, she thought, put the two together?

The result of that thinking is Once Upon a Pet, a business Probasco recently opened in a former knitting supply shop at 3165 N. High St.

The store sells gently used and new pet supplies, and a portion of the proceeds, once there are any, will be donated to local animal organizations and charities, according to Probasco.

"People here are all about their pets and recycling and being easy on the environment," Probasco said. "That's why I put it in Clintonville."

The owner for the past 24 years of Subway restaurant franchises downtown, Probasco said that she got the idea for her new enterprise after reading about the ways in which the economic downturn has had an impact on pet owners. In times like these, parents sometimes turn to thrift stores to clothe their children.

"Nobody was doing it with animals," Probasco said. "That's how the idea came about."

Once Upon a Pet will have a grand opening on Saturday, Sept. 11. Representatives from Pets Without Parents will be on hand with adoptable dogs that day.

Store hours will be 1 to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, noon to 4 p.m. on Saturdays. The store is closed on Mondays.

Probasco said that she will purchase used pet supplies as they are needed for the store, but is also "looking for donated pet items, from leashes, bowels, carriers, crates, cages and other items that you have that you feel might be of use to another owner."

"Typically, when you have a crate or cage for a dog it's for training purposes and once they're trained you really don't need it anymore," Probasco said.

Typically, too, she said, such items will sell at her store for half the cost of purchasing them new.

"The whole thing is affordability," Probasco sad.

Speaking of new, not everything in Once Upon a Pet has once upon a time been used by a pet. Probasco said the store also carries hamster cages, fish tanks, kitty litter boxes, dog shampoo, hairball treatment for cats, pet treats and small amounts of dog and cat food.

"Pretty much your stand pet stuff," she said.

"This idea will continue to unfold as we see what works and what doesn't," Probasco wrote in an announcement about the new business.

Probasco's own household includes two dogs and a bird, all of them rescues. In choosing a mascot for Once Upon a Pet, Probasco didn't have to look far: She settled on her dog Reilly, whom she adopted from the Capital Area Humane Society late in the summer of 2001.

Reilly was diagnosed with prostate cancer on June 21.

He's undergoing treatment through the Veterinary Medical Center at Ohio State University. Reilly started oral chemotherapy on June 26. Radiation treatments began on July 12.

"If we're lucky we may get a year out of him," Probasco said. "We're just trying to keep him comfortable and happy. So he's my mascot for the store."

More information about the Once Upon a Pet store is available by calling 263-7387 or online at www.onceuponapetsupplies.com.