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Growing the Ferret Category

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Marshall Pet Products is celebrating its 75th anniversary as a company.

Over the years, Marshall has pioneered and created some of the highest-quality ferret and small pet diets, treats and accessories. Recently, they have expanded into specialized products for dogs and cats.

“We started breeding pet ferrets in 1939, back then it was a real small regional operation,” Peter Reid, the president and COO of Marshall Pet Products, said. “Fast-forward that over the years, we became very proficient with producing them on a year round basis, so they are not seasonal. We developed a line of products in the 1990s and then from then we have expanded and acquired a company called Earth Balance, so we are not just ferrets anymore.”

Until 1993, the Marshall family took a relatively unknown category and grew it into a thriving business. In 1993, Reid started Marshall Pet Products. The company continued to support the unique needs of ferret owners by developing specialized ferret accessories like harnesses and leads, bell collars, toys and homes. It wasn’t long before he identified the need for a ferret diet as ferrets are obligate carnivores.

Since then, Marshall Pet has continued to develop new diets, toys, travel, accessories, fashions and cleaning products marketed specifically to ferret and small pets.

Having ferrets available in a pet store increases the need for present and future purchases for products in that store. Although many retailers only carry ferret products, and not the actual pet, having ferrets present in the store provides an opportunity to educate future pet owners about the proper care and handling of ferrets.

It also opens the door for in-store events.

“It’s been a long run. We want to thank all of the distributors, retailers and partners that are in the industry that have helped us,” Reid said. “It is not just us, it’s everyone that has been involved with us and been there along the way. You don’t just will it to happen, you continue to be committed to quality products and quality service and consistency and reliability.

These are things we don’t take lightly. I would say a big thank you to everyone that has supported us, from the consumer to the retailer to the distributor and our vendors, because without all of them we are not having this conversation.”

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