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January 29, 2020

The cannabidiol (CBD) market is growing at an enormous rate in both the human and pet market alike. To learn more about the state of the CBD sector and what consumers should know about CBD pet products, Pet Age recently spoke with Pancho Mangual, vice president of national sales for Paw CBD, a company that sells various CBD-based products such as oil tinctures, chews and topicals.

What has been the No. 1 question you’ve been receiving from retailers?

Consumers are becoming more and more interested in CBD and want to educate themselves so they know how to make good buying decisions. That means the retailers they are buying from are increasingly having to answer all the questions their customers are asking about CBD, for both them and their pets.

Because pets are more often than not treated as family members, owners want to be sure that what they are giving their pets is safe and effective. So the No. 1 thing they ask us about is our process: Do we work with veterinarians to formulate our products? Are they being third-party tested like human products? What is our extraction process, and how does it ensure our products are THC-free for pet safety?

All of these questions tell us that consumers want to be educated about CBD products—which means retailers have to be educated as well. We are more than happy to help educate retailers and consumers about CBD products for both people and pets. Our sales team is thoroughly and constantly trained to help educate retail partners, and our customer service reps are equally knowledgeable in fielding customer calls and questions.

Going into 2020, what products have been top performers for Paw CBD?

Pretty consistently, our best-sellers are our CBD oil tinctures for both cats and dogs and our line of CBD soft chews. All of our products come in strengths based on a pet’s weight and in flavors that most pets love. Our packaging is color-coded by pet size to make it easier for consumers to know what strength they need for their pet. Dog tinctures are available in natural and peanut butter flavors. Cat tincture flavors are natural and catnip. Tinctures are easy to add to food, and a lot of pet owners like to make their own homemade treats using our tinctures. And all Paw CBD tinctures have plastic droppers, which are much safer for use with pets and their sharp, pointy teeth!

For even more convenience, our soft chews are a great choice and easy on the teeth, which is especially important for older pets. Our original dog soft chews come in chicken and bacon flavor, and we’ve recently added specially formulated chews for both calming and inflammation, in turkey and bacon flavor.

And unlike a lot of our competitors, we offer both tinctures and soft chews for cats as well. We have a chicken and catnip flavor, and we just launched a kidney support formula in salmon flavor. There are so many dog products out there, but cats can benefit from CBD as well, so we want to be sure we’re offering great products for feline family members, too.

Soft chews make it really easy and convenient to add CBD to a pet’s routine, so it’s one product that is definitely very popular and in high demand.

What form of CBD pet product do you see being most popular in 2020?

Calming products! Even at the best of times, cats and dogs can have a lot to worry about. Thunderstorms, fireworks, separation, car rides, nail trims or a new family member can have the friendliest of pets acting skittish, fearful or even aggressive. If daily stressors, boredom or changes in the environment are having a negative effect, owners want a way to help their pets.

Our new blueberry-flavored CBD Calming Oil has been a huge hit. Just like our Turkey CBD Calming Chews, these products are formulated with ingredients shown to promote calm, like valerian root, chamomile and melatonin. We add our premium CBD and flavors dogs love to make it convenient to add to any daily routine. We’ve had nothing but positive feedback from customers who love the product and tell us they’ve seen how much it can help their pets.

What value do you see in veterinarian-formulated CBD products?

Animals have different physiologies and needs than we do, so while it might be tempting for people to just share their own CBD with their pets, those products aren’t made with animals in mind. We knew it was important to work with veterinarians to create and produce products made specifically for pets. It’s also important that the CBD oil is manufactured in a way that makes it THC-free, which means all our products are third-party, ISO-certified lab tested to ensure overall quality. As I mentioned earlier, these are all things consumers are increasingly asking about, and it helps them feel confident about the CBD products they are giving their pets.

And working with a veterinarian has also helped us create our specialty calming, hip + joint, and kidney support formulas to address common concerns owners have with their animals. Having a DVM involved means we know the products we offer are made safely with pets and their needs in mind.

Is the concept of retailers offering both pet CBD and human CBD going to be a growing trend in 2020?

Most definitely. As more and more people learn about CBD and try it—and see results for themselves—it’s only natural that they will want to try CBD with their pets. If a retailer is seeing success with human CBD products, why wouldn’t they want to also offer pet options at the point of sale?

As consumers increasingly turn to healthier options in their own lives, seeking out products for themselves that are properly sourced and held to a higher standard of quality, they are going to begin to expect the same options for their pets.

Why do you believe “human grade” resonates so much with consumers regarding pet CBD products? 

People who want alternative ways to support their own health and well-being are going to want to find those same types of alternatives for their pets. If they don’t want products with inferior or artificial ingredients for themselves, they probably don’t want it for their pets. “Human grade” says to them that what they are giving their pets is on par with what they are giving themselves and their family.

If you look at Paw CBD, you’re going to see products with real ingredients. Our baked treats, for example, are made with oats, honey, eggs, CBD and natural flavors. Our CBD peanut butter is made with just three simple things: dry roasted peanuts, CBD and MCT oil. And don’t think that I haven’t tried it, because I have! I mean, who doesn’t love peanut butter? It’s really that good!

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