More households have pets than children these days, so products for pets are an important part of the family budget. The folks who sell products to pet stores, pet services, groomers, boutique stores, veterinarians, or distributors all had booths at Mandalay Bay Convention Center last week for SuperZoo, North America’s largest pet products show.
Expected attendance was 10,000 people, 1000 of whom were international buyers. The World Pet Association show dates all the way back to 1950.
I am a repeat visitor to SuperZoo, but darned if every year I’m not surprised with products I have never seen before. Examples: I was introduced to a product that allows a pet mom or dad to “catch” Fido’s “business” before it hits the ground….important, I was told, for folks who have problems bending down and picking up after their pets. I also saw a new kind of very absorbent pet pad made out of bark (looks and smells nice, but must be replaced regularly), and then I was introduced to a smart cat-food container that can be timed to release food at particular times each day, can broadcast an owner’s voice from a cell phone call and can dispense food by a push of a cell-phone app button. The gentleman telling me about the cat food dispenser said yes, owners could be gone for a couple of weeks and the cats would be well fed during their absence. (Hopefully during the two weeks, the litter box would clean itself.)
I was also extremely surprised at all the products with CBD, cannabidiol, a product of hemp. One exhibitor spent about ten minutes giving me 20 minutes worth of information about CBD and how beneficial it can be for pets with orthopedic issues. For best results, he said, CBD oil fed to pets via dropper is available. For those pet parents who aren’t crazy about delivering oil via a dropper, lots of foods with imbedded CBD were available from a variety of exhibitors.
Personal pets are allowed on the show floor and I met a Hollywood dog named Coquetta La Diva, wearing sparking sunglasses and a pink dress. She also had painted nails. Her owner said she owns 200 dresses, has an Instagram account and once made the cover of a local magazine.
I have three dogs. None of them have a wardrobe and if they are lucky, they are occasionally seen on the cover of my holiday card.
Life is interesting.
I came away from the show with a few samples for my dog and one sales brochure from My Custom Pet Store, the folks who supply product if I wanted to issue my own brand of dog food. The company’s goal is to “produce healthy food for your dog at a reasonable price.” Nice. All the details about the products offered are described in a brochure.
Among the many Custom Pet Store offerings is a “Grain Free Duck product”. In large type, the product is described as 34% crude protein, 20% crude fat, 5% crude fiber, 10% moisture and the remainder in small percentages of Calcium, Phosphorus, Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids. Again nice.
But below the big type listing was a huge paragraph listing in detail all the ingredients in the product, something we rarely see on packages. In this case, the ingredients started with duck and 60 ingredients later ended with Aspergillus oryzae Fermentation Product. I had no idea a simple dog-food product could have so many ingredients.
I went searching for detailed ingredient lists for dry dog food on Amazon, and found none. I guess in some ways I don’t want to know.