August 3, 2015

As I’m writing this, I’m in a Las Vegas hotel room and SuperZoo has been over for less than two hours. It was great to make new friends and reconnect with old ones and, of course, to see the latest and greatest pet products.

For the show, I was handling Pet Age’s Instagram feed while our assistant editor Rebekah Harrison was in command of Twitter. It was so much fun snapping shots of cool products and booths and getting the images in front of viewers in real time. Aside from products and booths there were plenty of other sights to share, including a zebra-striped poodle and a pineapple-eating pig in a stroller. You truly never know what you will see at SuperZoo.

Instagram adds another dimension to a part of my job I really enjoy: finding new, innovative, problem-solving and cool products and helping them become known to retailers—and in turn to their customers. Anytime I saw something I liked at SuperZoo, it was so easy to upload it to Instagram and say “Here’s this cool thing. It’s at booth X. Check it out.”

And I can keep doing that with the backlog of photos in my phone. I saw a lot more neat stuff than I could possibly upload within the duration of the show. While a booth number is obviously unimportant now, it is important for good products to find an audience.

Innovation drives the pet industry. One thing shows like SuperZoo and Global Pet Expo are good at demonstrating is that there is virtually no segment of the pet industry that is standing still. There is innovation in every category and some product segments have undergone dramatic changes in only a few short years. The foods and treats just get more nutritious and more natural. The toys get more engaging for their intended pets. The LEDs that have swept the aquatics category (and, increasingly, the reptile category) keep getting smaller, brighter and more customizable. There’s something new—and often improved—everywhere you look.

And you can count on Pet Age to bring you these new products in each issue, in our newsletter and on our website. Oh yeah, and on Instagram.

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