DENVER, Co. — Dixie Brands Inc. has announced new leadership and strategic goals for its pet wellness brand Therabis, hiring specialty pet food veteran Bob Rubin as president of the subsidiary. Rubin will help grow the brand’s retail presence and sales. Rubin will also be responsible for capitalizing on opportunities for the brand at the forefront of the growing hemp-infused pet supplement category.

"Therabis has tremendous potential as a product that can improve the quality of life for the pets which so many of us consider to be part of our families," said Chuck Smith, president and CEO of Dixie Brands. "We are very pleased to continue the national roll-out of the brand under Bob Rubin's leadership.  Therabis is positioned for accelerated growth in 2019 as we broaden its distribution and continue to innovate with the introduction of feline and equine products, as well as ongoing additions to our existing canine line."

Rubin brings more than 10 years of experience in pet food to his new role with Therabis. According to the company, Rubin previously served as CEO and president of Solid Gold Pet, a holistic natural pet food company, since 2015. During his tenure there he helped position the brand in the market and expand its distribution domestically and into the Chinese market. Rubin also worked at Nature’s Variety as both the chief financial officer and chief strategy officer, where he quadrupled annual sales to exceed $100 million after repositioning the company’s Instinct brand.

"I am incredibly excited to join the Therabis team," said Rubin. "As an executive in the pet food industry, I have followed the hemp-infused category with great interest. I believe that Therabis' formulas, developed by veterinarian Dr. Steven Katz, are the best and most effective in the market today."

In 2019, Therabis will expand its brick-and-mortar presence to support its established e-commerce platform. The brand is targeting retail relationships and has signed an agreement with Central Garden & Pet, a distributor with widespread access to pet retail locations across the US.

Therabis currently offers a line of canine products in the hemp-infused pet supplement category. Dixie Brands now holds an 85% share of Therabis, after purchasing an additional 25% stake from one of its minority partners.

Read more about personnel changes throughout the industry.