Trend in Pet Products Goes from Glitzy to Green

It’s the twenty first Century and pets are all the rage, in fact, some say that dogs are the new humans! Everything from diamond encrusted collars to $500-an-ounce cologne is available for your favorite Fido! But according to experts these days the industry is moving from glitzy to green and all natural. 

“Spring 2008 is nearly upon us, and there are some notable merchandising trends among pet boutiques,” says Bo Nelson owner of “We’ve seen an increasing demand for all-natural, American made, and earth-friendly products.” Nelson maintains that the 2007 pet food/treat recall has inspired buyers to look for products that are safer, higher in quality and friendlier towards the environment. 


Camilla Vitale, a pet industry consultant in the Bay Area agrees. “I promote organic treats like Robbie Dawg, natural spa products and bio degradable poop bags like Doggie Walk Bags. Keep your eyes open for materials made with non-toxic inks and organic fabrics or products made with natural fibers like bamboo or the more commonly known hemp collars like those from Earth Dog,” she added


 “My hot item this year,” Vitale says, “are the Sublimation t-shirts by Kelly Michael. They feature, bright well-defined colors, the artwork is a digital heat transfer, the process uses no ink that can leave behind toxic residue.” 

Nelson from said that he is noticing a trend of getting “back to basics”. “Bling collars, pink outfits and faux fur accessories which were very popular at the start of the decade are giving way to classic designs, the use of higher quality materials, and an increased desire for functionality in products.” 

“In 2008 it’s no longer about the novelty of having really cool products for pets,” says Lorna Paxton, owner of  happytails Canine Spa Line. “Dog owners used to be amazed that there were such cute clothes available for dogs, or such great-smelling shampoos. Now it’s what people expect.”  She adds that in order for products to sell they have to be visually appealing, they have to actually do what they claim to do, and it helps if they perform more than one function. “They have to solve a problem,” she adds.


One new product out this season is InFuzion a combined shampoo and conditioner that boasts 14 amino acids and micro-beads which deliver nutrients directly to the follicle.  “This is a perfect example of a product that is very eye-catching and has multiple benefits,” Paxton says. 


“This year people are traveling with their pets,” says Leslie Houtkooper owner of, one of the industries fastest-growing websites.  She notes that travel-friendly products are hot sellers this spring. “Items like Soggy Paws Dog Towels, Dry Dog Instant Clean, a spray-on bath-replacement and the Backseat Barrier make traveling with your pooch more enjoyable,” she commented.


Another product that Houtkooper recommends, is Sleepytime Tonic. “This is a must have for travelers. It’s an all natural herbal Elixir that not only helps to calm a nervous dog, but can also help prevent car sickness!” So even if it is time to take off the fur and put on the hemp, there’s still plenty of ways to pamper your four-legged companion, not only can you look simply marvelous but you can also help save the planet!

Top Trends

  • all-natural, earth-friendly or organic
  • American made
  • Products that are multi-functional (multi-purpose)
  • travel-friendly pet products

Products Resource Guide

Bo Nelson is the owner and president of which is the leading business-to-business marketplace for the pet industry. In business since 2001, represents over 175 suppliers of quality, upscale pet products and supports a community of over 10,000 pet product retailers. Visit, located in southwest

Michigan, was founded in 2003 by husband and wife team Eric and Leslie Houtkooper. is one of the fastest growing online stores featuring the best selection of healthy products for dogs.” Visit

 Based in Sausalito, California, Blue Rocket Sales is owned and operated by retail veteran Camilla Vitale.  Her extensive experience in marketing, manufacturing, and apparel design can help take any pet industry business to the next level. Visit or call 415.382.3320 Lorna Paxton is owner of happytails Canine Spa Line which uses the finest (“better than human quality”) ingredients available to pamper, soothe and beautify today’s harried hound.  The products can be ordered through the company website at or by calling 1-866-HAPPY-20. 

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  1. I also think that with all the bad news coming out of China regarding chemicals in pet food (among other things) there seems to be a trend towards American produced pet supplies, particularly food. This is a chance for American pet suppliers to step up and try to compete more effectively on “quality” issues. With controversy comes opportunity!

    Gene Sower


  2. Great to see other pet industry players spreading the news about being green! Doo Care is an eco-friendly service that provides pet waste removal. It’s relatively unknown that pet waste has a very real impact on the environment by polluting waterways and impacting landfills (a San Francisco study estimated that 3.8% of residential landfill is pet waste.)

    Check out the new blog:, which is dedicated to “Making Man’s Best Friend – Earth’s Best Friend.”


  3. I agree, you can not trust the pet food industry any more. I feed my dogs with home made pet food. I also supplement them with vitamins from my vet to ensure they remain healthy.


  4. Another great green and functional product is the linkable treat-dispensing toy called HI.Q. ( These toys challenge dogs longer than other toys and are made in the U.S. of non-toxic, FDA-approved material.


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