I have been to a couple of shows – not your average dog shows! One was PetIndex which is a trade show for pet products. I wanted to see what was coming to the market over the next few months! I found some interesting products in the face of the recession. Some great harnesses which I will talk about in another podcast after I have had the chance to try them out – to see if they really achieve what they say they are going to achieve.
Anyway. A couple of favourites really stood out for sheer barminess!
Doggy Popcorn from Snack Shack. Gourmet popcorn for people has been around for a while but how about if I told you you can now buy a tub of popcorn for your dog that is – wait for it – LIVER flavour. I’m not sure about the nutritional value of maize in a dog’s diet, but they assure me that it is low fat! They offered for me to try some but I declined, it does actually smell very tasty, rather like smokey bacon crisps.
My dogs went crazy for it even before I had opened the tub. It was easy to break up into small bits and is strong smelling so they really love it. I guess it would be lightweight training food!
The other completely crazy but gorgeous product I saw was a box of doggy chocolates! Yes, you can now buy your dog a box of what looks exactly like Thorntons or Belgian luxury chocolates but with absolutely no cocoa in them – theobromine is the poisonous element in human chocs. They really did look delicious and yes I did try one. They taste rather like the pick and mix chocolate that you get.
My feelings were that if you are going to get this sort of thing for your pets, be wary – it may not be poisonous but it is still full of fat and sugar so brush your dog’s teeth if you don’t want a Vets bill for dental work later on. My other ‘nagging at you’ point is that if you have a great big tub of goodies, measure out an allowance for the day (no more than around 5% of their daily food intake my Vets tell me) and every time you give your dog a treat, ask for something first – a sit, a down, walking at heel… you name it – but never give away a ‘freebie’.
It made me wonder a little bit about how much we humanise our pets and I had an interesting discussion with some lovely folk from the Kennel Club about who these things really are for – us or the dogs!