Like dogs and cats, such small animals as rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters and mice make great pets for beginners. But for consumers looking for their first critter, the path to getting an ideal companion animal can be overwhelming. Not only do prospective owners need to know which type of small animal would make an ideal addition to their home, they need to know what products are required to keep the pet happy and healthy. And while it may be the responsibility of the consumer to be fully committed to caring for a pet before they acquire it, those in the pet industry — from manufacturers to retailers — can make that path to get there one that is clear, smooth and without doubt. Consumers should be encouraged to do their due diligence, and retailers can assist by making the learning process one that is as easy and engaging as possible. And it’s vitally important that if a parent is looking for a small animal pet for a child, retailers should never rush the process. If consumers are sure which critter to get as their first small pet, retailers are recommended to note the pros and cons of each species in order to gauge which one fits their lifestyle. It’s a good idea to encourage customers to ask questions and do research so that they are confident in the critter they want. This not only creates a better chance for a perfect match, but it also can enhance a retailer’s bond with their customers. Once the consumer is certain on the small animal they want, break down the products necessary to their specific critter, such as the habitats, food and toys that meet their needs. Products like these provide a touch of fun while covering the essential basics of critter keeping. With products such as these at their disposal, beginners can be confident in their endeavor with their first critter.
PetsPick Paper Pellets
The ultimate in comfort and odor control. PetsPick paper products are made from pre-consumer paper that is naturally absorbent, eco-friendly and offers 14-day odor control. This high quality bedding is sustainably sourced, providing the safety and comfort that small pets deserve. PetsPick Paper Pellets is a lightweight, clean pellet that doesn’t track outside of the cage. Made from pre-consumer paper, never recycled, PetsPick is clean and safe.
Whisper Quiet Wheel
Prevue Pet Products introduces its collection of small pet exercise wheels. Whisper Quiet Wheel has a specially engineered ball-bearing device that keeps the wheel whisper-quiet when in use to ensure not squeaking or rattling. It can be used with the stand or removed and fastened to the cage wire. Easily disassembles for cleaning and comes in three sizes: 6-inch, 8-inch and 9.5-inch models. Whisper Quiet Wheel is perfect for mice, gerbils, hamsters, hedgehogs and guinea pigs.
Field+Forest All Natural Hay
Field+Forest by Kaytee’s Premier All Natural Hay is grown without pesticides and harvested at the peak of freshness specifically for small pets. High-fiber premium cuts and naturally grown together blends offer a unique and enriching foraging experience with a variety of tastes and textures.
Science Selective House Rabbit Food
Supreme Petfoods has launched Science Selective House Rabbit as an extension to its award-winning Selective range. This new product has a formulation to match the needs of rabbits living indoors with a high-fiber mix of forages that more closely reflects natural grazing patterns of wild rabbits. It contains Timothy hay, grass and the herb thyme and it is fortified with essential Vitamins A and D.
The carefresh line of small animal bedding from Healthy Pet is made from scratch with pillowy-soft, ultra-absorbent comfyfluff designed specifically for small pets. Made from 100 percent reclaimed natural fiber, it provides a cozy, natural home that is better for small pets and the planet. It’s two times more absorbent than shavings. It’s a low-dust, easy-to-clean bedding with 10-day odor control.
Tropical Carnival Gourmet Foods
Tropical Carnival Gourmet Foods are a vitamin-nutrient-fortified food and treat specifically formulated to meet the daily dietary needs of your small animals from tiny mice to large rabbits. Rabbits and guinea pigs especially enjoy foraging for right-sized morsels of fruit, veggies, grains and seeds. The company topped off its gourmet foods with its nutritious ZOO•VITAL biscuits that support proper digestion.
Oxbow Western Timothy Hay
Oxbow Western Timothy Hay is a nutritious, sweet-smelling grass that is a favorite of small pets and recommended by leading small animal veterinarians. Harvested fresh from the Oxbow family of farms, every bag of Oxbow hay is analyzed, graded, nutritionally tested, hand-sorted and hand-packed to ensure it’s up to the challenge of nourishing your customers’ furry friends.
Manna Pro Guinea Pig Feed
According to the most recent APPA study, 29 percent of guinea pig owners are millennials who are known to take care of their pets like they take care of themselves. That’s why Manna Pro Guinea Pig food is crafted to support an optimal guinea pig diet with essential Vitamin C, boosted dietary fiber and free of artificial colors and flavors.
Since 2005, Naturals has been producing 100 percent natural, healthy and stimulating eats for all small animals. With products that include food and treats, the Naturals line was born out of the belief that pet parents want healthier, more innovative and stimulating products for their pets. Grown in their picturesque German meadows then prepared with minimal processing and never any sugars. Sure to brighten any pet’s day.
Versele-Laga Complete was formulated by veterinarians with nutritionally complete diets for herbivores, omnivores and carnivores. Unlike most commercially available foods, Complete is made via extrusion and not pressed pellets. This results in better palatability and bioavailability of nutrients for the pets. The Complete herbivore morsels have long fibers “cooked” in, thanks to Versele-Laga’s unique extrusion process. Complete provides ingredients formulated for each species’ specific nutritional needs and is made free of artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.
Food from the Wild Natural Snack
Kaytee Food from the Wild Natural Snack is a premium medley crafted to bring the variety nature intended to your small pet’s diet. Made with a limited amount of whole ingredients to make a tasty and healthy treat. With no fillers, added sugars, artificial preservatives or colors, each medley can be served daily as a nutritious treat. Available in two varieties, one for pet rabbit/guinea pig with real carrot, marigold, rose petal, spinach and strawberry and one for hamsters with real carrot, pumpkin seed, rose petal and sunflower.
Marshall Pet Ferret Finder
Bluetooth connects this silicone, LED battery-powered collar with any mobile device. The Ferret Finder app is a free, one-time download that allows you to find your ferret hiding in a house by sounding an alarm on the ferret’s collar. Your phone will notify you if your ferret goes out of range. You can assign pictures, names and sounds to each member of your ferret family.
Oxyfresh Cage Cleaner
Oxyfresh’s Cage Cleaner is ideal for cleaning kennels and cages for small animals such as birds, gerbils and mice. Like all products at Oxyfresh, Cage Cleaner is made in the USA, cruelty-free, non-toxic, safe, gentle, effective and will not disrupt a pet’s immune system.
Vita Prima is Sunseed’s flagship line of small animal and bird foods. With vitamin-fortified pellets and a blend of wholesome grains, fruits and vegetables, Vita Prima has all the nutrients that small animals need. Vita Prima recipes are free from artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.