H H Backer’s Pet Products Christmas Show!

by Mary Haight on October 24, 2009

All eyes were on the floor plan…trade shows usually require a plan of attack to make sure you don’t lose your mind sense of purpose. Covering what looked like two football fields on the first floor and less on the second, the H H Backer’s Pet4041360550_8f8ebf854c_o[1] Products Christmas Show, one of the 200 largest trade shows, tests even the best walking shoes. And though I’ve been there many times, I’m still a little like a kid at Christmas…what an amazing array of neat stuff!

Picking an aisle I turned right and almost ran into a stroller containing(?) one of the biggest cats I’ve seen. He seemed to be spilling over the sides, yet comfortably able to survey the scene–picking out Christmas gifts no doubt.

There was something for every type of pet lover, dogs, cats, birds, exotics, and an incredible array of food brands. More than 700 exhibitors in 1200 booths were offering everything from pet toothpaste and tick removers to automatic dog washing machines, and seasonal affective disorder “light” beds…no, really.

Design has really taken the lead here…some companies had interesting shapes and modern stylish dog bowls. Automatic water bowls have come a long way from the utilitarian and downright homemade looking design to bowls with clean lines, organic shapes, and unexpected style. They were attractive! Vendors were kept busy in this corner of the show.

Oh, and I had to get Tashi a new toothbrush and found one I liked from the4041306210_d7c9c0a42e_o[1] Benedent Corporation out of Houston; it’s called Triple Pet, a three-in-one design with soft bristles that won’t damage his gums. It also made the Dog Fancy Editor’s Choice list. Scrubbing teeth from all angles, it’s even got a padded handle to make it easier for me to hang on to when my dog tries to eat it.

Fancy framed beds, floor pillow beds with many fabric and color choices were up on the second floor. There were toy boxes, specialty dog gates and more, all artfully designed by Whitney Works Ltd, which had a very4041343190_824c6aeb7a_m[1] attractive display that showed their products in the best light. Creature Comforts, while it’s a to the trade firm, was another stand out in product presentation from the little red stretch plaid collars with jingle bells, to the beautiful porcelain biscuit jars.

And while we are talking food, I stopped at the Taste of the Wild booth…mostly because through all the many food booths, this one had the canned food open in little bowls so you could see what it looked and smelled like.  I had checked this product awhile back thinking it could suit Tashi. I really liked what I saw, with no grains,4041238404_32a67dca55_o[1] no by-products, no meal, all ingredients are from the US and made here.  I have been home-cooking for Tashi for years, and he took to this food like a  duck…uh, wait–better forgo that analogy given the ingredients.  There were no upsets, or changes in his “out” schedule either!

Next,  there were pet clothes, collars, and leashes for all occasions. Barker’s Bowtique had New York’s Beth Joy Knutsen and her famous shelter dog Bella Starlet , promoting shelter dog adoption. Barker’s gives 2.5% of all sales of Bella Starlet Dogs Clothes & Bows line towards animal rescue. Bella Starlet is more than just aHS1463topBellaStarlet model; she writes two columns “Life of a Celebupup” for the City Pet Guide, and “Tails About Town” for New York Tails Magazine.  There are shirts, dresses, and coats of many types and colors.

If  you use any of these products, I’d love to get your feedback.  I’ll be back late next week with more interesting items–might help you get some ideas for the holidays!


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