“The last several years has seen an increase in pet parents seek-
ing novel proteins,” said Pete Brace, vice president of pet parent
relations and communications for Merrick Pet Care in Amarillo,
Texas. “According to a 2015 GFK report, interest in rabbit is up 65
percent; venison, 32 percent; and buffalo, 49 percent.”
Novel proteins allow pet owners to offer more flavor variety
while selecting a diet tailored to the individual dietary needs and
preferences of their pet, Brace added.
Further, novel proteins have become popular as a means
of isolating digestive issues caused by the allergens in some of
the more common protein sources, such as chicken or beef, said
Shelby Wisniewski, director of integrated marketing for Instinct, a
brand of St. Louis-based Nature’s Variety.
The novel protein movement began as consumers sought
these foods at local butcher shops in order to make their own dog
food, said Lonnie Schwimmer, founder of Koha Super Premium Pet
Food, a brand of Nootie, based in Delray Beach, Fla.
“Since those days, these foods are more readily available in
many shelf stable products,” Schwimmer said.
At Dee-O-Gee in Bozeman, Mont., novel protein dog foods
have been gaining traction over the past few years, said
co-owner Holly Allen.
“We are starting to see real novel proteins on the single-source scene, like kangaroo or goat,” Allen said.
While novel proteins were introduced almost a decade ago,
superfood ingredients have become increasingly important in the
past five years as consumers strive to ensure more healthful lives
for their pets, said John Kampeter, vice president of marketing and
sales for Meta, Mo.-based Diamond Pet Foods.
“In our industry, this trend offers another touch point to
connect with consumers wishing to tailor their pets’ nutrition to
specific needs,” Kampeter said.
As with many advances in pet food nutrition, the inclusion of
superfoods closely mirrors pet owner awareness of the benefits
these ingredients offer in their own diets, Wisniewski said.
At George, which has stores in California, owner Bobby Wise
noted more consumer interest in superfood supplements than in
dog foods with these ingredients.
“We have been selling a lot of nutrient-rich supplements,
especially those with a natural or holistic bent, for instance, kelp-based powders, or chews incorporating additives such as chia
seeds,” he said.
However, Allen has seen an increase in kibble and freeze-dried-food manufacturers incorporating superfood ingredients
into their products.
TEVRA BRANDS offers Vetality Firstect Plus, a brand of veterinary-quality monthly topicals for dogs and cats containing fipronil and S-metho-prene. The product effectively kills fleas, ticks, flea eggs, larvae and
chewing lice. tevrabrands.com
ZIPPYPAWS’ NomNomz are fun, quirky, squeaky plush toys
that feature six yummy foods: a taco, a croissant, sushi, a
pineapple, fries and a steak. The toys contain stuffing and two
round squeakers. zippypaws.com
COASTAL PET PRODUCTS added Silver Sparkles to its elegant Sparkles
collection. Silver Sparkles now is available in three collar and two leash sizes.
PETMATE offers Hol-ee Gourmet, inspired by the brand’s Hol-ee Roller.
Owners can add their dog’s favorite treats to rubber-shell openings and
insert peanut butter or other canned-spread treats into the open nylon
center. The nylon can be removed from the rubber casing for a long-lasting
chew toy. The toys come with a free sample of Himalayan Dog Chews’
yakyPUFF. Available in a variety of fun shapes, including a peanut, turkey
leg and steak, and in two sizes. petmate.com
You Lucky Dog!
. . . What a treat. . .
for you and your customers!
Visit our website: www.naturesanimals.com
or call: 1.800.DOG.BONE