Monday, February 18, 2008

A fun business trip

From February 13 thru February 17, we were in San Diego, attending the Global Pet Expo. The pet industry's largest annual trade show is presented by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association (APPMA) and Pet Industry Distributors Association (PIDA.) It is not open to the public, but is open to just about everybody who has anything to do with pets: manufacturers, distributors, sales reps, pet shop owners, groomers, breeders - you name it. We saw some very interesting individuals at the show. Some were there hawking their products. Some show attendees were colorfully dressed. Of course we had to visit's favorite supplier, Pet Factory. Pet Factory is the only manufacturer of USA rawhide pet treats. Doesn't their display look wonderful? At this display for a bird seed manufacturer, we got to pet an American Eagle and an owl. There were numerous dogs of all sizes at the show. This guy looked like he was ready to leave. This magnificent Newfoundland patiently greeted visitors at the display he was representing. The Global Pet Expo had an amazing amount of pet merchandise - just about everything you can imagine for pets of any sort. What I noticed was a trend in automated toys for pets to play with if their owners were just too lazy to play with them, doggy treadmills for dogs whose owners were too lazy to walk them, pet strollers for pets too lazy to walk. The clothing and accessories for little dogs is just overwhelming - think of any item for your children - they'll have it for your dog. The most ridiculously silly items? Canine coffee for your dog's morning drink, an artwork kit for your dog to create paintings, a self-flushing litter box to put on your toilet and this: Contech’s new ChatterBowl is a talking pet bowl, so your dog can hear your voice any time it wants. The food bowl records your voice, and plays it back when your pet approaches. Your voice will play whenever your pet comes to eat or drink. The show was fun, but even more fun was exploring San Diego and meeting some of the locals ... We met this pooch having lunch at the Prado restaurant in Balboa Park. (No, the hamburger was not for him.)

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