Earlier this week, I was chatting to a couple of customers about the soap and shampoos that we sell. I was waxing lyrical about how they were specifically designed and formulated for dogs coats and skins and contained nice, natural ingredients. This led on to us talking about how much things have changed in terms of dog products – mainly for the better. One lady said she remembers bathing her dog with washing up liquid as a child, whilst the other lady must have been really posh because she said they’d used baby shampoo on theirs! With the unbelievable array of grooming products available today, it’s hard to imagine that only 20-30 years ago, there was possibly only one dog shampoo on the market and most of us just used products we had to hand.
This got me thinking about other things we used to do with our dogs with the choke chain springing to mind! Choke chains were at one time the preferred way to stop your dog from pulling on the lead – sort of. I’m not sure they really stopped the dog from pulling, they just caused them to choke whilst they were doing it! Thankfully, the general consensus these days seems to be that harnesses are far more effective at controlling a dog that pulls, although I have to admit, when Sally Basset saw a pheasant last weekend and decided it was to be hers, I struggled to hold on to her, even with a harness!
Treats must be the other area where the biggest changes have been seen. As a child, if our dogs had any treats at all, it was those biscuits that came in different shapes and colours. Today, I’m feeding my dogs venison sausages and sweet potato chews. I’m probably showing my age here but I don’t think sweet potatoes had even reached Blighty when I was a child let alone been considered as something you could feed to your dogs. The downside to this is that there has been a massive increase in the number of obese pets – whether this is down to too many treats or pooches sharing their humans Friday-night pizza, it’s difficult to say but the good thing is that we’re seeing far more natural and healthy treats available as a result.
Without a doubt the pet industry has changed massively in recent years and mostly for the better. And with technology playing a bigger and bigger part in the pet industry, who knows what changes the next 20-30 years will bring.