By Pet Age Staff//February 1, 2024//
By: Pet Age Staff//February 1, 2024//
Founded in Brazil in 2007, Petix created a zero-waste manufacturing model to produce incredibly absorbent, premium pee pads made from repurposed baby diapers normally disposed by leading companies for minor defects, saving half a billion diapers from landfills annually. In 2017, Petix started its U.S. brand, WizSmart, to bring its earth-friendly product to market and has since expanded into more than 2,000 specialty pet stores across the country. Pet Age recently spoke with Krister Holm, co-founder and manager of Petix, to learn more about pet waste.
When and why did you decide to get into the pet pee pad category?
We started in 2007 in Brazil, as a family-owned company. One of our founders owned a major pet store, and many clients were complaining about leaky and soggy pee pads being a big pain point. It’s a large and growing category, and our research showed a complete lack of innovation and a “race to the bottom.” It was bigger packs for less with no regard for quality, experience and value. The customer message was “If one pad doesn’t do the work, just buy bigger packs and throw more pads at the problem.”
We set out to make something better. A truly absorbent pad, more sustainable. Something that provides peace of mind. Something sustainably made with the environment in mind. A pad that works for all types of dogs: not just puppies, but also small dogs, indoor/outdoor dogs, sick dogs and old dogs.
What makes a WizSmart pee pad such a unique pet product?
WizSmart pads are made from upcycled unused baby diapers. We repurpose over ½ billion defective unused diapers ever year in our own facilities, and our site is now the largest integrated pee pad factory in the world. We also use other sustainably sourced materials like Eucafluff from eucalyptus fibers.
Our pads are twice as thick and two to three times as absorbent and dries faster than the average pee pad of the same size. We call it “no more tracking pee around the house”, no leaks and no odor, protecting floors, carpets and furniture. This means a better customer experience, AND customers help the environment by using FEWER pads instead of throwing down more pads. Our pads are good for 24 hours, or more, depending on how much your dog goes.
And our four patented “stay put tabs” that secure the pad to the floor or the wall for a male dog solution. People love this feature! We are also proudly made in Brazil: we ship very efficiently to the U.S. market, and it turns out many retailers love the fact that we can provide supply chain diversification, and quicker turnaround times.
What can a retailer expect from a partnership with WizSmart?
We are proud members of Astro Loyalty, IndiePet and the Pet Sustainability Coalition. We have nationwide distribution and are sold in over 2,000 independent pet stores, which is our focus. We provide training videos and printed materials, we share images and social media assets on the Petix wholesale website, and we also love to participate in store events, be it adoptions or annual sales events. We listen to retailer feedback. One example is our recent launch of WizSmart disposable dog diapers and wraps: many stores were asking for this to complete our cleanup line, and now we have them! We’ve been selling them since early fall. The same is true for our WizSmart Essentials line that we just launched: retailers were asking for a value pad at a lower price point. Our new Essentials are selling well, especially our new Charcoal pads.
How would you describe the typical companion animal that can benefit from your pee pads?
We really cover the entire lifecycle. Some pet parents use pads only for puppies. Others train them to go both in and outside, and they become customers for life. We have a specially loving relationship with older dogs that have problems holding it or that suffer from incontinence. Given that our pads absorb so well, so quickly and handle odors, they work well for older dogs. And we found that more dogs are having health issues like incontinence and UTI.
We like to say “Your dog should have his own bathroom.” We want to provide an option for pet parents that for whatever reason may not be able to provide outdoor access. Weather, travel, maybe it’s just difficult to get out, illness. We also hear from veterinarians who advise against dogs “holding it in” for too many hours, as it may create issues later in life.
We always have fun discussions at trade shows, where people tell us stories about how they use our pads for every kind of pet, from critters to cats. We’ve also learned that our pads have worked great during some recent hurricanes and flooding events! Absorbency is key!