Join the Fight
Join the Fight
in your dog’s digestive system
Pet Product News International October 2017
Stock Up on Solutions
For many owners, supplements and essential oils have become a
preferred method of meeting pets’ health and calming needs.
DISPLAYS DRAW ATTENTION
Retailers can make consumers more aware of nutritional supplements via effective
product placement or by providing detailed product information, said Harald Fisker,
president of Grizzly Pet Products in Woodinville, Wash. These items can be a win for both
consumers and retailers, he added.
“Supplements are very good margin products for retailers and often a lot cheaper for
pet parents than going to the vet,” he said.
Patra De Silva, president of NHV Natural Pet Products in Vancouver, British Columbia,
Canada, said that products such as supplements and essential oils create a great
opportunity for retailers to get creative. Eye-catching displays help capture consumers’
attention, De Silva added.
“Try setting up beautiful tables with potted plants and herbs in creative, colorful containers,” De Silva said. “Display the products in natural woven baskets in between these
potted herbs. Make sure you have lots of eye-catching signs that show what you carry.
With essential oils, try using a beautiful diffuser and burning the oil next to the products.”
Tabletop displays garner more attention than leaving such products on the shelf, not-
ed Lucy Postins, founder and chief integrity officer for The Honest Kitchen in San Diego.
Displays should provide information that is easy to understand, said Vicki Rae
Thorne, certified aromatherapist and herbalist and owner of Earth Heart Inc. in Dundee,
Ill. She said point-of-sales materials should be easy to read with pictures or simple text
showing how to use the product.
“Set up an area in the store that is dedicated to natural products,” Thorne said. “Use
pictures of plants with simple text explaining how they enhance the remedy.”
Retailers that run special checkout promotions once or twice per year have great
success and have sustained above-average growth, Fisker said. Oftentimes, pet owners
just need to be introduced to supplements to start using them. Displays at the register
can start that conversation, Fisker added.
It is also important for retailers to keep in mind some precautions when merchandising essential oils. While Lorin Grow, owner of Furry Face in Redlands, Calif., aims to have
one tester bottle for each essential oil she carries, she said it’s also really important that
these products are kept out of the hands of children, who might break the bottles or even
consume the product.
BY LINDSE Y GE TZ
When it comes to supplements and essential oils, dog owners view products in both categories as potential problem solvers. They’re looking for solutions that will help with a variety of health concerns and will hopefully extend—
and improve—their dogs’ lives.
Harald Fisker, president of Grizzly Pet Products in Woodinville, Wash., said his
company has seen the most solid growth for supplements such as omega- 3 oils and
joint support products, where pet owners see almost immediate results.
“The word-of-mouth exchange between pet parents is a strong denominator in
keeping this growth going,” Fisker said. “That is followed by experience-based re-
The interest in supplements and essential oils definitely seems to be solution-driv-
en, said Dan Owens, co-owner of Four Dogs Pet Supplies in Charlotte, N. C. Products
that can help with issues such as itching, anxiety, breath improvement, bug bites and
allergies appear to receive the most attention, he added.
“There will always be interest in products that can help pet owners solve a problem,” Owens said. “For us, there’s more interest in supplements than in essential oils.
Around here, essential oils seem to be a growing segment at the local farmer’s market.
“As people become more educated about the products, I will be interested to see
how much it grows. I think it’s still new to many.”
The interest in essential oils and supplements is part of an overall trend toward
more pet owners using natural remedies, said Lorin Grow, owner of Furry Face in
Redlands, Calif. Consumers don’t necessarily want to go straight to using medication
when their pets encounter a problem.
“In the last eight months, we have seen a marked increase in interest and
received a lot more queries about using essential oils with pets,” Grow said. “I
definitely think that as more people turn toward natural remedies, using essential
oils is part of that trend.”
Of course, more people are using natural remedies on themselves, and that is
helping push the trend toward pets.
“As with all pet products, the driving trend is related to humanization,” said Alison Schwartz, general manager of All Pets Considered in Greensboro, N.C. “As we
use these products for ourselves and become more aware of the many benefits, we
tend to be interested in how to implement them in the lives of our pets.”
“Supplements are very good margin products for retailers and often
a lot cheaper for pet parents than going to the vet.”
—Harald Fisker of Grizzly Pet Products