Pet Age Staff//May 24, 2013//
Pet Age Staff //May 24, 2013//
Warmer weather means dogs will be spending more time outside, making it imperative to keep them from overheating or dehydrating.
In the past, a simple stainless steel or plastic dish were the only options available to consumers to provide their dogs with water. But now technological advancements have enabled dog owners to choose from an array of products that keep their dog’s water cold and fresh.
When looking for these products to stock a store’s shelves, it’s important to keep three trends in mind.
First, the price of the product is important because, while consumers will spend more on these products than they would on a standard bowl, there is still a threshold. Second, consumers expect all-day functionality from the watering product. Finally, form follows function: Consumers in the market for a water solution will choose one that complements their existing décor.
FrostyBowlz is one such product that meets those three core requirements. A stainless steel bowl sits atop the FrostyCore, the frozen insert that works to keep the pet’s water or canned food cold.
“Anecdotally there’s evidence that cats and dogs prefer cold water,” Jeffrey Brown, president of Talega Products, the inventors of FrostyBowlz, said. “Our bowls don’t put the water at an ice cold temperature. It’s between 45 and 50 degrees.”
Research has indicated that pets will drink more water at that temperature, which appeals to pet owners who are trying to keep their dog’s water cold on hot summer days. Plus, for owners who feed canned, fresh or raw food, FrostyBowlz can keep the perishable food from spoiling longer than a standard bowl would. FrostyBowlz is available in three sizes.
Another customer favorite for keeping water fresh is the pet fountain.
“Our fountains have a patented free-falling water design that mimics the free-falling water that we see in nature,” Jon Cornwell, the category manager for the PetSafe water and feed solutions business unit, said. “Our goal is to entice pets to drink more water by appealing to their natural instincts. By drinking more water our pets stay hydrated and proper hydration, can reduce the chances, of kidney and urinary tract disorders.”
In addition to the health benefits, pet fountains offer dog owners the convenience of not having to refill the water dish as frequently.
According to Cornwell, consumers are expecting more from their pet fountains than simple functionality.
“Consumers are looking for health and wellness for their pet and convenience for themselves, primarily,” he said. “However, we are starting to see more consumers desiring products that provide fashion as well as function when it comes to a fountain.”
An easy solution to appeal to consumers is to offer several different styles, materials and colors in pet fountains so that consumers can find the right one to fit their home décor.
Beyond water solutions, another product category that delivers cool relief on those steamy summer days is the cooling pad.
Ranging in price from under $10 for the Petiq Dog Cooling Mat to $100 for the Hound Cooler Dog Cooling Pad to over $245 for the TechNiche Phase Change Cooling Pad, there’s a solution for every customer’s needs and budget.
A cooling pad works by providing a dog with a comfortable, cool mat on a hot day. Some of the products options, like the Petiq product, keeps pets cool by creating a lower temperature than the pet’s body. It works indoors or outdoors.
Other technologically advanced options include a cooling system, like what is provided by the Hound Cooler Dog Cooling Pad. The Hound Cooler is a battery-powered system that pumps cold water from its cooler through insulated tubing. The cold water provides a cooling surface for the dog.
The TechNiche Phase Change Cooling Pad is on the far end of the price spectrum. Designed to maintain a temperature of 58 degrees Fahrenheit for four hours, the cooling pad contains the proprietary Cool Pax with unique Phase Change Material (PCM), which is 30 percent lighter than water and freezes at 58 degrees, compared to 32 degrees for water.
Ethical Products offers a cooling bed that features a non-toxic gel interior that stays cooler than room temperature by 5-10 degress and without refrigeration. It can be used alone, or with standard pet carriers and beds.
For the active dog, Kumfy Tailz offers the Kumfy Pax that covers a dog’s chest and abdominal area, or “core.”
It features the Kumfy Pax, a puncture-resistant nylon/pvc enclosure filled with special UltraGel, which can be cooled for an hour in the freezer and then inserted into the pouch.
By addressing the core, the product can help the dog better able regulate its body temperature.
– Maggie Marton