For many of us, pets are family. That makes it so difficult to say goodbye to them when they pass away. Losing a beloved pet is something that I was forced to endure recently, and it was as painful and excruciating as I had remembered from past experiences.
I have written in the past about having caught the backyard farming bug when I purchased eight ducks last year. All eight were flourishing until one of the Cayuga ducks stopped eating and grew lethargic. It was a female named Girly (named so because she was the most gentle, shy and affectionate of my ducks since I had her when she was three days old).
To make a long, painful story short yet equally painful, a trip to a local vet and then an animal hospital ultimately ended with a 10 p.m. phone call from a doctor informing me that she was with Girly, who at that moment was experiencing heart failure and was about to pass. By the time I hung up the phone, I was overwhelmed by waves of grief, and spent the rest of the night wide awake and feeling helpless. The sweet, inquisitive creature who relied on me for her care didn’t even get to celebrate her first birthday.
To some, the attitude is, “It’s just a duck; you can get another one.”
But when you raise something from its infancy, and you provide it with food and shelter, it becomes a part of you. And I lost part of me when I received that phone call.
Giving our pets the best of everything should be our top priority. And this issue, as we do in every edition of Pet Age, features many products that are created to bestow a happy, healthy life upon our pets. Our cover story by Joanna Tong details the skyrocketing popularity of cannabidiol (CBD)/hemp products. Aimed at promoting healing and to help with such issues like pain and anxiety, these products come in a variety of forms, including full-spectrum CBD hemp oil and phytocannabinoid-rich (PCR) hemp supplements.
We also explore the latest trends in dog apparel, cat feeders, small animal health products, reptile terrariums and food for birds and aquatic livestock. In addition, April’s Focus On spotlights bathing products while the Management section includes two columns on relationships. Amy Castro covers the always important subject of how retailers can provide excellent customer service, while Jim Reimann of Elevate discusses the importance of brands supporting independent stores.
We hope you find this month’s content informative and enjoyable. And in honor of Girly, please take a moment to remember a companion pet that you loved and lost. We owe it to them for all the happiness they brought us while they were in our lives.
Glenn A. Polyn