I’m a native New Yorker who was born in Brooklyn, and I guess you can say I’m sort of following in the footsteps of my Italian grandfather. However, whereas he raised pigeons, I’m the proud owner of four khaki ducks.
I purchased them when they were a week old from a local farm/pet supply store, and I have since caught the backyard farming bug. Thanks to knowledgeable reps for several exhibitors attending Global Pet Expo, I was quickly brought up to speed on the do’s and don’ts for raising these adorable waterfowl.
It is pure chance that our bird content for this month is on urban poultry, but Erik J. Martin hit a home run with his report on the growing customer demand for backyard bird products and the response from manufacturers. And we were so impressed with the smart and stylish products unveiled by Ware Pet Products at Global Pet Expo that we have chosen this issue to pick the brain of John Gerstenberger, the company’s VP of product development, on such subjects as new products, cat furniture and, of course, the backyard farming trend.
If you caught the patriotic cover for this issue, then you know that the theme is “Made in the USA.” Not only does Alexandra Wepner report on how there’s been an increase in wariness among pet owners on the source of the food that their pets eat, but Sandy Robins explores the variety of U.S.-made products in the dog and cat product categories, and the “Made in the USA” topic can be found in two of this month’s Management columns by Dan Calabrese and Todd Maute.
Of course, that is just a sampling of what’s on tap this month. The May Pet of the Month is the precocious ferret, plus we examine the value in carrying products for unconventional small animals, including species like hedgehogs, chinchillas and sugar gliders. And not only will you find 10 tantalizing products in our Focus On gallery, the topic of which is Colorful Clothing, but this month’s Stockroom section is packed with nearly 50 exciting products that are worth consideration among your store’s inventory.
There’s much more to be excited about in this issue, but don’t take my word for it. You should have a look for yourself. Enjoy!
Glenn A. Polyn