Rebekah Harrison: What is the history of Petmate?
Emilye Schmale: It was 50 years ago that Petmate created the first dog kennel in Arlington, Texas. We began with kennels but have grown to encompass a full line of products and solutions for the pet industry and, more importantly, for pet families.
The growing portfolio of brands, including Aspen Pet, Chuckit!, Dogzilla, Jackson Galaxy and JW, provide a variety of solutions that fulfill the varied needs of pets and pet parents today. Our products have always been based on consumer insights and advanced trend research.
Rebekah: I know that a large quantity of Petmate products are made in the USA. What spurred the decision to use U.S. manufacturing?
Emilye: At Petmate, we have a great responsibility to provide our loving pets with a long and happy life. This responsibility goes beyond the physical care we provide them, meaning we must take action to protect the natural world they live in. By manufacturing many of our products in the U.S., we are not only reducing our own carbon footprint but also providing jobs and giving back to our local communities. This is the standard that Petmate holds itself to and we are proud that our brands are deeply reflected in the happy, healthy lives of our pets.
Rebekah: Petmate creates its own resin for plastic goods. Can you tell me a little about that process?
Emilye: We source much of the plastic we use in our manufacturing from our Spectrum Plastics Facility, based in Arlington, Texas. It is at this award-winning resin facility that we produce nearly 80 million pounds of resin each year. We purchase post-industrial, pre-consumer, recyclable materials to reduce our carbon footprint and keep millions of pounds of plastic out of landfills. The resin is compounded and then formulated into the plastic that is used in our well-known carriers, shelters and other plastic products.
We also utilize a variety of eco-friendly manufacturing techniques to ensure that our pets and their families have a beautiful world to play in.
Rebekah: Petmate is the two-time winner of the Edison award. Can you tell me more about the award?
Emilye: We are honored to have been awarded the Green Edison award for our manufacturing facility as well as for our innovative See & Extend Carrier.
The Edison awards are chosen based on four criteria; concept, value, delivery and impact and also recognizes “game changing” products and brand innovations. Our manufacturing facility has been awarded for being “a leader in globally recognizing, honoring and fostering innovation and innovators to create a positive impact in the world.”
In addition, our See & Extend carrier was developed from Petmate’s experience traveling thousands of miles with pets, offering all-in-one convenience, comfort and safety for pets and their families during travel. The See & Extend features a side pop-out to give dogs and cats room to stretch and mesh windows for ventilation and visibility, making travel with a pet much easier and less stressful.
Rebekah: What is a typical day like for you? What is the typical life of a new product like?
Emilye: Each and every day our dedicated product managers work with designers and engineers to create new and innovative products. Many of our top products are plastic based so are brought to life first at our Spectrum facility.
First, a unique blend of resin is created. Then, the product is brought to life during our manufacturing process. Next, product samples become available for our marketing team to promote through PR initiatives and a wide variety of advertising vehicles. Then, our outstanding sales team brings the product to distribution and directly to many of our large retail partners. Ultimately, this product lands on store shelves for consumers and their pets to utilize and enjoy!
Even after the product has made its way into a consumer’s home we still interact with it; our stellar customer service team offers support to our retail customers and our pet consumers every day. Together, the entire Petmate family works as a team to seamlessly ideate, produce and provide the highest quality pet products available on the market today.