As if we didn’t know, an article out today says that even when times are hard, dog lovers continue to make sure our dogs have everything they need to have long, healthy and fun lives. Here’s what the article from the Huffington Post said about the “Pet Pampering” business:
Birth rates may decline during a recession, but our furry friends are lapping up the cost savings of many childless homes. HuffPost blogger and animal expert Wendy Diamond reports:
“With 62% of American households owning at least one pet (up from 56% in 1988), and 37.2% of families owning dogs and 32.4% owning cats (thus 7.6% must own at least one of each) Americans have embraced their pets as members of their families. Growing trends such as the celebration of pets’ birthdays with puppy parties and feline fiestas have created an entire luxury market of paw pampering products that will have your furry friend barking for more.”
Even Martha Stewart and GNC are cashing in on the lucrative pet pampering industry, which is expected to grow 5 percent this year to $47.7 billion. Compare this to $45.5 billion in 2009 and $38.5 billion in pre-recessionary 2006.
So if just reading this inspires you to want something new for your dog, happydogsplay.com recently added more smart puzzle dog toys that will challenge and entertain your dog in the same way that developmental toys do for kids. (Those who know me personally know that I know nothing about developmental toys for children but I read this comparison on a website and thought it might explain the concept of smart dog toys to most people.)
We now carry plush puzzle toys like the Hide-A-Squirrel toy that has three toy squirrels (each with a squeaker), hiding in a plush log challenging your dog to find and remove them. The IntelliBone, featuring a plush bone surrounded by removable plush rings, provides your dog a different kind of challenge because they have to learn to pull the rings off the bone which is quite tricky.
As with all dog toys sold by happydogsplay.com, the plush puzzle toys are made with non-toxic materials and tested thoroughly for safety first by the manufacturer. And then when we receive them at our office in Roswell, GA, they’re tested again by happydogsplay.com to check for ourselves that there aren’t unsafe levels of Lead, Mercury, Cadmium and Chromium. We use a local company that specializes in testing for lead and other heavy metals using the X-Ray Flourescence device that is commonly used to test children’s toys.
We’ve also added an agility starter kit that provides you beginner’s equipment to see if your dog has the aptitude for agility sports before you spend a ton of money getting into agility training for real.
And just for the record, happydogsplay.com is not about “pet pampering” because we don’t believe that there is such a thing. Our dogs need stuff to be happy and happydogsplay.com provides that stuff; and dog people need to be happy and we provide that stuff. Dog are NOT a blessing in disguise–there is no disguise involved. They make us happy and we make them happy. What more could we want?
(If you’re wondering, the other recession-proof businesses are family movies, donuts, marathons, fireworks, iPhones, tattoos, fantasy sports, gum and whale watching.)