Petcare Leader, Hartz, and Agency of Record, Cutwater, Protect Furry Friends From Outdoor Pests in unconditional love Campaign

Latest creative work and media plan unveil brand platform rooted in the realities and benefits of pet parenting

Leading petcare brand Hartz and creative and media agency of record, Cutwater, with offices in San Francisco and New York City, have partnered together to launch an all-new brand platform and national campaign.

The brand platform, entitled “unconditional love”, celebrates the shared life between pet families and their cats and dogs. As all those with furry friends can attest to, this physical and emotional intertwinement is a two-way relationship built on happy, healthy homes. The campaign provides brief, authentic glimpses, almost a window, into the challenges and rewards of pet parenthood.

The first wave of spots reinforces Hartz’s trusted flea & tick offerings. “The Talk” highlights an often overlooked element in protection: comfort. The narratives capture honest conversations by pet parents about keeping their fur babies not only safe from unprotected pets, but also comfortable with the soft and stretchy UltraGuard ProMax Cat and Dog Flea & Tick Collars. “All Bees, No Fleas” focuses on the power of plant-based ingredients. The imagery visualizes a pet owner and dog intimately bonding indoors and outdoors — complete with adorable matching outfits — thanks to the maximum botanical Flea & Tick protection of Nature’s Shield. The pieces were directed by Rodrigo Garcia Saiz of production company Central Films North. Editorial and VFX were executed by Acreage Editorial and Warm & Fuzzy, respectively.

“Unconditional love. It is a brand promise to be there for the good, the bad, and the ugly. And a great description of why Hartz makes so many products that deliver on all aspects of living with pets”, explains Cutwater Founder and CCO Chuck McBride. “Our approach for the flea & tick creative was to focus on the relationship and the concern that comes naturally when pet parents are about to let their loved ones venture outside.”

The work debuts several milestones, such as the new logo, tagline, and sonic identity for Hartz. It also follows the “Deliciously De-Lick-able Delectables” campaign for Delectables wet cat treats (Squeeze Up and Lickable Treat) and the “#MyOinkiesFace” social media push for the recently rebranded Oinkies dog treats. Both projects featured influencer collaborations throughout Instagram and TikTok.

Hartz CMO Tina LeLay says, “Petcare is one of the most exciting industries to be a part of, but the problem is that most companies only spotlight pet ownership as one-dimensional during communications efforts. ‘unconditional love’ embraces the whole experience of pet families, even the challenging moments. The campaign work perfectly connects with this overarching theme, and we couldn’t have brought it to life without the leadership team at Cutwater as well as our amazingly talented cast.”

The media strategy boasts a robust buy across nationwide digital, social, display, and search channels. Retailers include the likes of Amazon, Chewy, and Walmart. According to Cutwater Head of Media and Communications Lizzy Ryan, “Our target audience was Millennial and Gen Z consumers. To further position Hartz’s flea & tick portfolio as premium innovations, we centered our tactics around driving awareness, product trial, and ecommerce sales. Based on learnings, I foresee some interesting opportunities for growth, specifically the cat collars landscape, which is less cluttered than its dog counterpart, and the rising natural petcare space.”

The next wave of creative, which will run with paid support, is slated to range from a campaign for Home Protection Dog Pads to a social good initiative for Hartz Loving Paws.

Hartz Senior Director of Marketing Gregg Herman adds, “The flea & tick season is when cats and dogs need unconditional love the most. UltraGuard ProMax offers pets absolute comfort and protection before embarking outdoors, while Nature’s Shield presents a green alternative for getting closer than ever to our furry companions. When there’s protection, affection and attention can be shown and returned with ease.”

Hartz items are available for purchase in-store and online.


Client: Hartz
Chief Marketing Officer: Tina LeLay
Senior Director of Marketing: Stacy Kisla
Senior Director of Marketing: Gregg Herman
Senior Manager, Ecommerce Marketing: Kimberly Moran
Brand Manager: Aaron Baumgarten
Assistant Brand Manager: Alexandria Garcia

Agency: Cutwater
Founder & Chief Creative Officer: Chuck McBride
Principal & President: Christian Hughes

Senior Art Director: Alexandra Ebright
Senior Art Director: Lexi Lanzi
Senior Copywriter: Taylor Smith
Designer: Hichem Kherbachi

Strategist: Jake Baldridge
Director of Creative Strategy & Head of Social: Viktor Torbjörnsen
Social Media Marketing Manager: Ashley Feminella

Executive Producer: Jason Souter

Head of Media & Communications: Lizzy Ryan
Associate Media Director: Caitlin Delaney
Senior Media Supervisor: Holly McKinzie

Group Account Director: Courtney Griffin
Account Director: Brett Harris
Account Executive: Marc Cruz

Project Manager: Ana Elejalde

Production: Central Films North
Executive Producer: John C. Barreiro
Director: Rodrigo Garcia Saiz
Producer: Maeliosa Tiernan

Editorial: Acreage Editorial
Editor: Crandall Miller

Post / VFX: Warm & Fuzzy
Head of Production: Chris Grey
VFX Supervisor: Elliot Fan
Producer: Andrew Jerez


Social Media:

Facebook: @cutwater

Twitter: @CutwaterAgency

Instagram: @cutwateragency

LinkedIn: Cutwater


Facebook: @HartzPets

Twitter: @HartzPets

Instagram: @hartzpets

LinkedIn: Hartz Mountain Corporation


About Cutwater:

Cutwater is an independent creative and media agency with offices in San Francisco and New York City. Headed by advertising thought leaders, Founder / CCO Chuck McBride and Principal / President Christian Hughes, the agency prides itself on building distinctive campaigns for challenger and legacy brands alike. These have included the likes of Hartz, Russell Stover, Brawny, Jeep, Ray-Ban, and more.


About Hartz:

Hartz is a leading manufacturer of pet care products in the United States and Canada. For over 95 years, Hartz has provided a full range of pet care products of the highest quality that help pet owners love their pets the way their pets love them: unconditionally. Through the Hartz Loving Paws™ shelter outreach program, Hartz is committed to helping animal welfare organizations that care for and protect pets until they find their forever homes. For more information, visit


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