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October 24, 2017

Never take anything for granted. Too often we underestimate how good we have it, not knowing that everything can change in the blink of an eye.

First our country endured three hurricanes, Harvey, Irma and Jose, battering several states and Puerto Rico to the point that it will take months, maybe years, before life can return to normalcy. Now tragedy strikes California with wildfires that have scorched approximately 200,000 acres and led to more than 40 deaths, as of this writing. Thankfully, firefighters from throughout California and surrounding states are battling the fi res around the clock, which we hope will result in the fires being contained by the time you read this.

I notice the amazing stories that come out of these tragedies, the extraordinary lengths people go for their pets as well as the heroic actions by pets themselves. One recent report detailed Odin, a great pyrenees that refused to leave its family’s goats, and protected not only the herd but also baby deer that were in danger from the California wildfires. It’s pets like Odin that our industry services, and it’s our products that provide Odin with a happy and healthy life.

When a pet reaches its senior years, it often needs specialized care, and Alexandra Wepner’s cover story focuses on the research that’s gone into the innovative foods and supplements that are beneficial to older pets. This issue also provides you with three profiles—Hershey Pet Food Company, Halo and Sturtevant’s Veterinary Remedies—that off er an insight into the passion that drives independent retailers, food and health care brands in their mission to provide the highest quality product to pet owners.

This being Pet Age, that’s only part of our coverage. This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the monumental recall of pet food and treats as a result of a widespread melamine contamination. A decade later, pet owners are more demanding, and Colleen M. Murphy investigates how the landscape has changed for this area of our industry. We also put the spotlight on the advancements in dog beds, diets for senior or overweight cats, profitable avian feeders and waterers, reptile substrate options, small animal odor control, in-store self-washing bays, natural toys and the fascinating jellyfish and seahorses that are available to today’s hobbyists.

And that’s just a fraction of what we’re bringing you in this issue. Turn the page and find out. Enjoy!

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