Facing unprecedented challenges in the marketplace, it has become even more important for pet specialty retailers to set themselves apart from the competition by stocking a product assortment that will keep pet owners coming back into the store again and again. To assist our retailer readers in this endeavor, Pet Business honors standout pet products with its annual Industry Recognition Awards.
For the eight-annual edition of our Industry Recognition Awards, the editors of Pet Business searched through the many press releases we receive every day, as well as the aisles of industry trade shows, pet store shelves and online retailers’ websites for the most exciting and functional products in a variety of pet categories. Of course, with so much innovation coming out of the industry every year, this is never a small feat. However, the field has been narrowed, and without further ado, the winners of the 2009 Pet Business Industry Recognition Awards are:
My Dog – Heart Breakers
Adorable plush characters with a natural rubber heart body, HeartBreakers from My Dog are two toys in one. The soft rubber nubs on the heart body clean teeth and gums during play, making these toys functional as well as fun.
Itzadog, LLC – Ecollargy Collars & Leads
Ecollargy collars and leads are made from reclaimed advertising billboards. The cleaned and cut billboards are used to create a soft and durable material, for unique products with bright colors and graphics, and the leash handles are wrapped with segments of reclaimed bicycle tire inner tube for a soft grip.
Rotations Pet Food – Rotations 3-in-1 Complete Nutrition System
The Rotations 3-in-1 Complete Nutrition System is a rotational feeding system featuring three nutritious meat-first, all-natural formulas that are easy to digest because they work together in a cycle to ensure the perfect ratios of high-quality proteins and fats, healthy fruits and vegetables, wholesome fibers, and essential vitamins and minerals.
Natural Balance Pet Foods Inc. – Tillman’s Training Tips
Tillman’s Training Tips are bite-sized, semi-moist dog treats inspired by Natural Balance’s four-legged skateboarding bulldog, Tillman. Available in four flavors (chicken, lamb, beef and turkey), they contain no corn, soy, wheat, artificial flavors or preservatives.
Nutri-Vet – Dental Health Care Center Counter Display
Nutri-Vet’s Dental Health Care Center displays veterinary formulated products that can help prevent bad breath and tartar in dogs of all ages. Breath Fresh Dental Rinse and Dental Health Soft Chews help eliminate “doggie breath,” while the Oral Hygiene Kit makes canine teeth brushing easy.
Glo-Marr Products – Barktini Blends
Barktini Blends natural shampoos and spritzers are designed to turn any time into happy hour for both pet and pet owner, with great scents and gentle ingredients to allow the products to be used as often as needed.
Metropolitan Vacuum Cleaner Company – Air Force QuickDraw Portable Pet Dryer
The Air Force QuickDraw Portable Pet Dryer is designed for easy handling, power, durability and value. A 1.3 HP motor produces 18,000 ft./min. of warm, filtered air, so it’s strong enough for professional use. But its compact size and weight also make it perfect for home grooming.
Sleepypod – Crater Dot
The Crater Dot is a comfortable lounge for pets. The foam lounge base is polyester fabric over a molded foam form that is contoured to provide just the right padding for the pet, and a warmer kit can be installed in the pocket in the base.
Wellpet – Wellness Healthy Indulgence
The four new Wellness Healthy Indulgence Naturally Delicious Everyday Entrees for cats are both grain-free and wheat gluten-free. The new line is available in chicken and chicken liver recipe, tuna recipe, salmon and tuna recipe and turkey and chicken recipe.
Hartz – Pro Dent
Hartz promotes good dental health in cats with its Pro Dent line. These crunchy cat treats feature DentaShield, a patented ingredient that coats a cat’s teeth to block tartar buildup, as well as a nutritious blend of vitamins and minerals.
Lucky Litter LLC – FroliCat BOLT
The FroliCat BOLT is an automatic laser toy that provides hours of fun for cats. Simply hold BOLT in your hand or place it on a flat surface, turn it on and watch the cat pounce, chase and bat at the exciting laser patterns.
Pet Tree Houses, LLC – Pet Tree Houses
Pet Tree Houses mimic the outdoor experience, using real trees for visual and audible stimulation for pets. Handcrafted in the U.S., they have platforms and toys for pets interwoven in their branches for a natural effect.
Bellrock Growers – Pet Greens
Bell Rock Growers’ Pet Greens is a complete line of natural pet nutrition products. The company’s premiere product, Pet Grass, makes it easy to provide pets with live, certified-organic wheat grass. Pet Greens Garden self-grow kits are also available for customers who prefer to grow their own greens.
Precious Cat – Earth-Friendly Litters
Precious Cat offers non-toxic, biodegradable litters that are safe for felines and the environment. Precious Cat Senior addresses medical and urinary tract problems in older cats, and Precious Cat Long Haired litter features a particle size that these cats prefer and will not adhere to long fur.
DOGS & CATS
Sherpa Pet Group – SPG Sport Collection
Available in both the Sherpa and Cloak & Dawggie lines, the SPG Sport Collection features new colors and reflectives that transform traditional products into a sporty collection. Sherpa Sport includes the Sport Duffle, Sport Sack and Sport Wheelie/Backpack. The Cloak & Dawggie collection includes the Sport Harness, Sport Parka and Sport Lead.
BISSELL Homecare, Inc. – Pet Inspired Line
BISSELL’s Pet Inspired line includes spot and stain cleaners, pet hair rollers, coat and paw cleaning tools and a window drool cleaner. It also includes a set of Universal Pet Hair Vacuum Tools and the ShedAway, which captures loose hair from pet coats.
TowerStar Pets – Neater Feeder
The Neater Feeder from TowerStar Pets, LLC is a pet feeding system designed to reduce mess. Protective walls contain spills and a filtering system separates spilled food from spilled water.
Central Avian & Small Animal – Kaytee Forti-Diet Pro Health
Kaytee’s Forti-Diet Pro-Health line is a new and improved seed- and grain-based bird diet that contains DHA Omega-3, a fatty acid that supports the heart, brain and vision functions of pets. The diets also contain prebiotics and probiotics to aid in digestive health.
Avian Innovations – The Original Forage Feeder
Made from all-natural fiber rope and soft wood, The Original Forage Feeder is an interactive bird toy that features three blocks, each of which has four holes that can hold treats or dry foods, to encourage natural foraging behaviors.
Central Avian & Small Animal – Super Pet Habitat Defined Enrichment Homes
Super Pet’s Habitat Defined Enrichment Homes feature a bowed front design that provides increased living space, a built-in, removable top activity center, and an “Enrichment Wall” to prevent birdie boredom. They are easy to clean and have antimicrobial technology built into all plastic interior surfaces.
United Pet Group – eCOTRITION Bird Snak Shaks
Ecotrition 100-percent edible Snak Shaks are made from natural ingredients such as fresh alfalfa and golden honey. They provide pet birds with a fun hiding place, nesting materials and an interactive chew to keep their minds stimulated and their beaks healthy.
Oxbow Hay – BeneTerra Organic
BeneTerra Organic products are designed to mirror the nutrition a small animal would find in its natural environment. Included in the line are Organic Guinea Pig and Organic Rabbit formulas, Organic Meadow Hay and Organic Barley Biscuits.
Marshall Pet Products – Peter’s Nature Treats
Peter’s Nature Treats are little morsels designed to be a treat for rabbits, hamsters and guinea pigs. Available in a wide assortment of flavors, including carrot, apple and papaya, the treats are made with an environmentally sound production process.
MIDWEST Homes for Pets – Critter Nation
The Critter Nation offers many of the same attractive features as the company’s popular Ferret Nation—full open and removable doors, critter-proof door latches, adjustable shelves, wire ramps, and easy-to-clean plastic pans—but is designed to accommodate a variety of small pets, such as rats, chinchillas, sugar gliders, etc.
Ware Manufacturing – Bun-E-Fun Dolls
These all-natural corn husk dolls are safe to chew and 100-percent edible, making them the perfect bedtime doll for rabbits, hamsters, gerbils, guinea pigs, chinchillas and other small pets.
Absorption Corp. – CareFRESH Confetti
CareFRESH Confetti is long-lasting pet bedding made from extra-long, extra-soft bleached fibers for maximum absorbency and odor control. It provides a natural living environment, and its patented formula is free from dust, pine and cedar oils, so it’s safe for small pets.
San Francisco Bay Brands – Healthy Herp Instant Meals
Healthy Herp reptile diets use real greens, vegetables, fruits, meats and insects to create simple, nutritious meals. To stimulate the animals’ appetite, San Francisco Bay Brand has chosen ingredients that provide the proper texture, taste and smell to appeal to the target species.
Zoo Med - ReptiBreeze
Zoo Med’s ReptiBreeze is an open-air black anodized aluminum screen cage that is great for small species of old world chameleons, juvenile green iguanas and other arboreal species of lizards. The corrosion-resistant cage features a large front door and bottom door for cleaning or feeding.
Penn-Plax – Reptology Turtle Topper
The Reptology Turtle Topper is an above-tank platform designed to meet the basking requirements of most aquatic turtles. It increases a pet turtle’s habitat size while allowing maximum swim space.
Ocean Nutrition – Rapid Delivery Formulas
Ocean Nutrition has introduced a “Rapid Delivery Formulation” (RDF) into its Frozen Formula Foods lineup. Each frozen cube contains individual, bite-sized pieces of Formula Food that offer the perfect combination of convenience, nutrition and palatability.
Maglife USA – NitraStrate
Nitrastrate substrate is made up of polymer beads designed to eliminate dead spots and bring a constant supply of oxygenated water into the substrate, allowing vast amounts of aerobic bacteria to grow. Due to the slow percolation of water through each spherule, anaerobic actions can occur and nitrates are removed.
Rolf C. Hagen – Fluval Edge Aquarium
The simple and elegant architectural lines of the Fluval EDGE capture emotion and serenity in an easy-to-use aquarium set. It features fully integrated halogen lighting and power filtration. A sealed glass top provides spectacular high definition viewing and reduces evaporation.
DrTim’s Aquatics’ – H2O-Pure Products
H2O-Pure freshwater treatment products include: One and Only Live Nitrifying Bacteria, which controls new tank syndrome; AquaCleanse, a tap-water detoxifier; First Defense, a fish stress relief solution; Clear-UP, a natural water clarifier; and Re-FRESH, a combination of beneficial bacteria that keep the aquarium clean.
Aquatic Life LLC – Mini Protein Skimmer 115
The Internal Mini Protein Skimmer 115 was designed for mini-reef tanks. It features a tubeless housing design, a reaction chamber that provides ample room for organic molecules to bind with air bubbles, a CE-certified pump with a needle-wheel impeller for increased air-to-water contact, and an easy-to-clean housing.
United Pet Group Aquatics – TetraPond BioActive Pressure Filters
TetraPond Bio-Active Pressure Filters feature open profile bio-activators (bio-media), quick back flushing, and mechanical and biological filtration. The bio-activators back flush much better than foam, and pond owners will not need to open the filter and hand-clean the media.
Zeigler Pond Diets with Vpak
Zeigler has incorporated a new natural feed additive, Vpak (Vitality Pak), into its pond fish diets. Vpak contains various bioactive compounds that promote effective and efficient immune system function, resulting in a stronger defense against numerous diseases and parasitic infections.