Despite the relative recession resistance of the pet care category, the past few years have been tough for small, independent pet specialty retailers. In addition to dealing with a significant reduction in consumer spending, pet stores are facing increased competition from mass merchants that are trying to take a bigger bite of the pet products market. These factors have made it essential for neighborhood pet shops to focus on building product assortments that will set them apart from other retail outlets while delivering a real value to their customer base. It is with this in mind that Pet Business honors this year’s standout pet products with its annual Industry Recognition Awards.
Now in its ninth year, Pet Business’ Industry Recognition Awards program highlights the pet specialty industry’s most innovative and functional products across a variety of pet care categories. To find our honorees each year, the editors of Pet Business scour vendor press releases, industry trade shows, pet store shelves and online retailers’ websites for the products we feel provide the best value to pet specialty retailers and their customers.
Once again, this was a banner year for innovation in the pet industry, so narrowing the field down to a single winner in each category was far from easy. However, the tough choices have been made, and without further ado, the winners of the 2010 Pet Business Industry Recognition Awards are:
The Kyjen Company, Inc.
Finally, someone has invented a squeaker toy that won’t stop squeaking after just a few minutes of playtime. Kyjen has created a squeaker toy that provides days of fun for the family dog. Kyjen Invincibles are stuffing-free squeaking snake toys that feature specially designed squeakers that continue making noise even after being punctured. Invincibles are available in three-squeaker and six-squeaker sizes.
Bergan’s Travel Harness minimizes driving distractions and increases protection for pet owners and their dogs. It was built to meet rigorous pet safety and durability tests conducted by an independent laboratory. The complete harness system comes equipped with adjustable safety tether and two high-grade aluminum carabiners.
Precise Pet Products
Precise Holistic Complete
The Precise Holistic Complete line formulas feature sustainable DHAgold omega-3s to support cognitive learning and probiotic Bacillus coagulans to aid digestion. The formulas include: Wild at Heart Flight Line-Duck and Turkey; Wild at Heart River Line-Salmon; Large and Giant Breed Puppy; and Senior.
Casey Essentials dietary supplement does the work of multiple supplements by providing a host of whole-food vitamins and minerals. It helps to support a
pet’s immune system, promotes heart, kidney and digestive system health, and fights joint and muscle pain.
Instinct Grain-Free Biscuits
Instinct Grain-Free Biscuits are oven-baked natural treats made with real meat protein and healthy fruits and vegetables, with no added sugar or salt. The treats also have prebiotics, which are a proven aid in digestive health, and ground pumpkin seeds, which provide fiber.
DOG ORAL CARE
Tropiclean Fresh Breath Made Easy
TropiClean Fresh Breath Made Easy! is a new generation of safe, natural products designed to make pet oral-care simple. The line is designed to promote cleaner, healthier teeth while freshening breath. Products include brushless Clean Teeth Gel, Oral Care Water Additive, germ-killing Fresh Mint Foam, and Dental Treats.
Cardinal Laboratories Inc.
Viva La Dog Spa Line
The Viva La Dog Spa brand is designed to appeal to customers who want to create a pet-spa experience at home. All Viva La Dog Spa products are manufactured in Cardinal’s 100-percent solar-powered facility and are recyclable anywhere on the planet.
DOG GROOMING TOOLS/ACCESSORIES
FURminator Deshedding Tools
FURminator drastically expanded its line of pet deShedding products by adding 17 deShedding tools that allow pet parents to select a product based on their pet’s specific hair length, size and life stage. Among the new products are deShedding tools for dogs, cats, small pets, puppies and kittens.
West Paw Design
Eco Drop Pet Beds
The Eco Drop is a nest bed featuring an inner cushion made from 100-percent recycled soda bottles and an 85-percent recycled cover. Made in the U.S.A., the bed is non-toxic and has been certified safe by Oko-Tex, which tests for more than 100 substances, including phthalates, pesticides, heavy metals and allergy-inducing dyes.
Limited Ingredient Diets
These grain-free formulas are made specifically for cats and kittens prone to allergies based on Natural Balance’s unique protein and carbohydrate blend, along with effective natural ingredients to help rebuild a cat’s immune system. Complete and balanced for all breeds and life stages from kittens to adults.
Bell Rock Growers
Pet Greens Crunchy Treats
Tartar-control Pet Greens Crunchy Cat Treats are all natural, made with nutritious greens, turkey, chicken, salmon and other wholesome ingredients. They are grain free and contain no wheat gluten, soy, or artificial colors or flavors. Varieties include: Turkey & Veggie, Chicken Pot Pie, and Seafood Salad.
Play-N-Squeak Tail Spin
What makes Tail Spin so incredibly engaging is that the tail appears randomly, putting a cat into predator mode, stalking the tail and pouncing at-will. The sturdy stump also features a sisal top for scratching pleasure and a Play-N-Squeak MouseHunter peeking out of a hole in the stump.
The Wholistic Pet
Wholistic Feline Complete
Wholistic Feline Complete is an all-in-one complete nutritional supplement that offers the highest level of 100-percent bio-available nutrition in a tasty, whole-food form. Each ingredient serves a specific purpose and provides crucial nutrients that work synergistically as a whole.
CAT LITTER/LITTER MAINTENANCE
Purr & Simple Inc.
Purr & Simple Cat Litter
Purr & Simple Cat Litter eliminates odor faster than any other cat litter. It doesn’t need any artificial fragrances or additives to do its job. The company’s proprietary formula, developed from fibrous plant material (including portions of nutshells), is completely biodegradable.
Simple Solution/Bramton Company
PawSafe Household Cleaners
PawSafe Household Cleaners are specifically formulated to be safe around pets and kids, using natural plant-based ingredients that are just as effective as traditional cleaners. The line includes floor cleaner, window cleaner, multi-surface cleaner, tub and tile cleaner, toilet cleaner, and toy and dish cleaner.
Designed for in-cabin pet travel, Sleepypod Air’s folding base allows it to be compressed, to help it meet various airline regulations. It also features a seatbelt strap for car travel, easy access openings, a trolley pocket to attach it onto other luggage, and removable and washable bedding.
PET FEEDING/WATERING PRODUCTS
Made of high-grade polypropylene, these scoop-and-serve dog dishes not only look great, they’re functional too. These dishes feature handles and non-skid rubber feet, ensuring that a pet’s meal stays where it is supposed to be, not where their noses push it.
Super Bird Creations
Designed with the medium-size birds in mind, the Hootenanny is a well-outfitted toy that also serves as a swing. It features an eclectic selection of natural, wood, paper and plastic parts that will keep parrots occupied for hours.
Central Avian & Small Animal
KAYTEE Nature’s Benefits Daily Diets
Nature’s Benefits Daily Diets for birds are formulated to appeal to the natural desires and address the unique nutritional needs of each pet. Made in the U.S.A., these all-natural products combine grains, fruits, nuts and clusters. All of the products contain no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives.
All Pet Supply USA
Marvelous Pet’s Bungalow Birdcage
Marvelous Pet’s Bungalow birdcage assembles in minutes without tools, comes with escape-proof door locks and an open-top. The Bungalow birdcage measures 36 x 28 x 70” and is a great fit for birds such as large conures, medium-sized parrots and African greys.
SMALL ANIMAL FOOD
LM Animal Farms/The Hartz Mountain Corporation
Bonanza Gourmet Diets
LM Animal Farms Bonanza Gourmet Diets contain a nutritious assortment of fruits, vegetables, seeds and grains combined with high-protein and high-fiber pellets. These diets have been formulated with optimal levels of protein, fat, carbohydrates and fiber to meet the needs of small animals.
SMALL ANIMAL TREATS
Premium Nutritional Products Inc.
ZuPreem Dental Stick Ferret Treats
ZuPreem Dental Stick Ferret Treats are stick-shaped and have a ridged texture designed to help maintain healthy teeth and gums. Made from real chicken, the treats have 30-percent protein. The treats are packaged in 1.5-ounce pouches with approximately 20 sticks in each pouch.
SMALL ANIMAL LITTER/ACCESSORIES
American Wood Fibers
Premier Pet Easy Comfort Colors
Packed with all the same great benefits as the original, Easy Comfort Colors adds a healthy dash of fun. American Wood Fibers starts with the same specially sifted, kiln-dried, all-natural softwood material as original Easy Comfort, and uses colorfast, non-toxic dyes to achieve effective, safe and fun bedding.
SMALL ANIMAL TOYS
Marshall Pet Products
The Hangin’ Monkey
The Hangin’ Monkey allows ferrets to nestle right in for a nap or play a game of peek-a-boo. There’s room enough for two or three ferrets to have a swinging good time. It clips easily to most cages and is made of washable fleece.
SMALL ANIMAL HABITATS
Ware Manufacturing, Inc. & Absorption Corp.
Carefresh Complete Kits
Carefresh Complete Kits feature Ware Manufacturing’s connectible Critter Universe homes and Carefresh food and bedding. They are available in three versions: 1 Level Critter Universe home, ideal for dwarf hamsters; 2 Level Critter Universe home, perfect for hamsters; and the Critter Universe Wall, which hangs on the wall and simulates a natural burrowing environment.
United Pet Group
Tetra Fauna Viquarium
Tetrafauna Viquarium features a realistic sandstone finish, waterfall, riverbed and riverbed extension and fits most 20- to 55-gallon aquariums. A hidden three-stage Whisper filtration system helps ensure clear water and a built-in access ramp lets critters move from water to land.
Reptifresh, from Zoo Med, is an odor-eliminating substrate made for use in reptile terrariums. Made from a natural mineral called zeolite, there are no added dyes or chemicals in this naturally derived substrate. Reptifresh helps stimulate natural digging and burrowing behaviors of terrestrial reptiles.
The Hartz Mountain Corporation
Wardley Advanced Nutrition Perfect Protein
Wardley’s Perfect Protein formula is designed to meet the amino acid requirements of fish to support their growth and good health. Most fish foods have too much protein, which results in waste and dirty water. This protein formula provides just what fish need, so the water stays cleaner.
Conceptual Creations Pet Products
Glow Aquatic Décor
Conceptual Creations Pet Products (CCPet) has introduced a series of five glow-in-the-dark aquatic décor pieces for use in saltwater and freshwater aquariums. Ranging from 9.5” to 13” in length, they absorb light and will glow for approximately 1-1.5 hours after ‘lights-out.’ CCPet’s composites and ‘glow technology’ are non-toxic, dishwasher safe and will not fade.
AQUARIUM WATER TREATMENTS
MICROBE-LIFT All-In-One Master Supplement
MICROBE-LIFT All-In-One Master Supplement simplifies reef maintenance by allowing hobbyists to dose tanks with six products in one application. The strategically balanced formula includes chelated iron; essential minerals and trace elements; vitamins and amino acids; calcium concentrate; iodide; bromide; strontium; and molybdenum.
Rolf C. Hagen USA
Fluval G Aquarium Filter
Hagen’s Fluval G aquarium filter has a modern look, and beneath the surface, the Fluval G offers three-stage quiet filtration. It is designed to be easy to use and maintain with one-button self-priming start-up technology that allows water flow to start without manual siphoning.
Aquatica Gallery LLC
Magic Globe Aquarium
The Magic Globe Aquarium features patented, state-of-the-art “Water-Vacuum Technology” with a waterfall and self-contained filtration system. LED lighting creates ambiance and atmosphere and becomes a beautiful nightlight. The ceramic base is individually hand painted and fired with glaze finish for an astonishing and vivid effect.
United Pet Group
TetraPond In-Pond Skimmer
Acting as a pre-filter for a pond’s pump, debris is drawn into the skimmer, where it is collected in the easily removable basket, helping keep the pond water clean. It is easily camouflaged and installed without cutting a pond’s liner.