Loyal Companion, a pet store in North Windham, is one of 10 other stores in Maine and New Hampshire that will remain open as a new owner takes over. Credit: Lori Valigra / BDN

Half of the Loyal Companion pet store locations in Maine are expected to continue operating under a new owner after its parent company declared bankruptcy.

A sign in the North Windham store said it and 10 other locations will remain open. A store employee said four of those locations are in southern Maine and others are in New Hampshire.

A company spokesperson did not respond immediately to a request for the list of stores that will remain open. The Saco store may be staying open, according to customers interviewed by the Portland Press Herald.

The pet store chain announced last week it would close its eight locations in Maine as its parent, Independent Pet Partners of Woodbury, Minnesota, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The Maine locations are in Portland, South Portland, Lewiston, Topsham, North Windham, Scarborough, Sanford and Saco.

The company owns a total of 160 pet shops in a dozen states under names including Natural Pawz, Kriser’s Natural Pet and Chuck & Don’s, with 50 of the stores being Loyal Companion.

In its bankruptcy filing, the company blamed a consumer change in pet food preferences away from grain-free dog food and the COVID-19 pandemic, which decreased its revenue. It listed $182 million in assets and $215 million in liabilities.

The company said in the bankruptcy filing that it will try to sell some stores to its top lenders. The filling said there is already a deal with lenders to buy 66 Chuck & Don’s and Kriser’s Natural Pet stores.