This August, I had the pleasure of travelling to Las Vegas to attend the largest pet retail trade show in North America – SuperZoo. Over 3 days I had the chance to explore the show floor which featured over 1000 different exhibitors. One thing that I really enjoyed during this trip was the opportunity to check out some of the newest and most innovative outdoor travel gear for our furry friends.
Now that I have returned home, settled back into my normal routine, and had a chance to go through all the information that I brought back with me – I am excited to share with you some of the products that caught my attention.
Bug Shirts and Bug Vests from PAIKKA
One of the big challenges for many pet parents when camping or hiking with their pets during bug season is finding a way to keep the biting bugs like mosquitoes and black flies away. Unfortunately, effective bug sprays containing DEET are toxic leaving many pet parents feeling lost. One company, PAIKKA, has found an interesting way to address the problem.
Research shows that the stripes on a zebra can actually confuse and disorient flying insects, preventing them from landing. It’s a concept that has previously been used with horses and now PAIKKA’s bug shirts and bug vests let you take advantage of that interesting discovery while spending time outdoors with your pets. While the products are made for dogs, they are available in a small enough size for your feline friends as well.
TickCheck Tick Testing – For Lyme & Tick-Borne Disease
Another pest that you need to be aware of when adventuring outdoors is the tick. Not only are these parasites responsible for itchy and uncomfortable bites, but they can also carry some serious and even life-threatening diseases. The company TickCheck offers a wide variety of different tick removal tools to carefully and safely remove a tick from your dog (or yourself). But, that’s not what really stood out to me.
In addition to arming pet parents with tools to remove ticks, they also offer testing for tick-borne diseases. All you have to do is register for their tick-testing services and then send your tick to the lab in a small plastic bag. In return, you will receive the results indicating whether the tick in question was carrying a tick-borne disease that you should be aware of. Options range from a basic panel testing for only the most common diseases to a full comprehensive panel testing for up to 30 different pathogens.
Kolossus Big Dog Carrier & Backpacking Pack from K9 Sport Sack
There have long been carriers for small cats and small dogs, but owners of larger dogs with mobility issues weren’t afforded the same luxury. Of course, this is partially due in part to the challenge of supporting your dog’s weight. K9 Sport Sack is a company that I was quite familiar with before SuperZoo, but they had a product that I hadn’t seen before on the show floor – the Kolossus Big Dog Carrier & Backpack.
The carrier is suitable for dogs ranging from 20 to 80lbs. It is made with an internal frame and weight distribution straps to help you safely support the weight on your back. When you aren’t carrying your dog, it can be converted into a 60L hiking backpack to carry all your gear. It’s a great choice for dog lovers that want to continue hiking with a dog that is older or injured in any way.
Drift Kitty Coat from RC Pets
The world of outdoor adventure offers many options for hiking and camping with our canine companions, but the same can’t be said for our feline friends. Cat lovers often purchase smaller dog coats and jackets which work to some degree, but a dog’s body and a cat’s body aren’t quite the same. Cats have longer torsos, meaning that most coats are a little short.
This year a jacket stood out at the RC Pets booth – it was a coat made specifically for cats. The Drift Kitty Coat is waterproof and offers a fleece liner to keep your best friend warm when the temperatures drop. A two-way zipper on the back of the jacket allows easy access to your cat’s harness.
DoggyRade and KittyRade
A serious concern that many pet parents have when enjoying a long hike or spending time outdoors on a hot day is dehydration. We have access to products designed to replenish lost electrolytes like sports drinks and Pedialite, but what about our pets? This is where DoggyRade and KittyRade really shine. As we recently shared in our Camping with Cats video, this is a great way to rehydrate after an active day in the sun.
Both products provide your pets with a variety of different health benefits including electrolytes, prebiotics, and amino acids. The KittyRade product also offers taurine, which is much needed for a healthy cat. They are hypoallergenic and low in both calories and fat, making them a healthy option for cats and dogs of all shapes and sizes.
Spleash All-In-One Dog Leash Handle with Water Cup & Spray
One product that quickly caught my eye in the Emerging Brands section of the show floor was the Spleash. This is a leash handle that can be used on almost any standard leash including leather, rope, nylon, and Biothane. It offers a comfortable grip, but that’s not the most impressive part of what this offers. The handle can be filled with water (and is still surprisingly lightweight) which you can provide to your dog or cat during your hike with a flip-open cup for drinking or with a sprayer on the front.
Another interesting use for the sprayer that was explained to us was a deterrent for off-leash dogs. If you have ever hiked with a cat, small dog, or reactive dog then you know how frightening an off-leash dog encounter can be. Using the water sprayer you can surprise and, hopefully, scare off a dog without causing any harm to anyone involved.
NiteHowl Rechargeable LED Safety Necklace from Night Ize
If you plan on hiking late at night, visibility is an important safety consideration. The company Night Ize has long made its reputation in the pet industry with their LED collars, leashes, hang tags, and safety necklaces. We have safety necklaces for all 3 of our dogs to ensure that they will always be seen around the campsite or on the trails regardless of the time of night.
I stopped by their booth at SuperZoo to see if there were any new products or interesting changes to their existing line and I wasn’t disappointed. The NightHowl LED Safety Necklace that we know and love is now rechargeable. All you need to recharge it is a micro USB cord, which makes it suitable for charging with most portable battery solutions. I love the idea of reducing waste with a reusable solution.
Nature’s Protection Flea & Tick Prevention from Earth Animal
We are long-time fans of the company Earth Animal in our home. It has quickly become a pack tradition for us to purchase one of their No Hide chews for each of our dogs to enjoy during each of our camping trips. I went to check out their booth after hearing that they had a new flavour that I thought our pups would love but I wound up interested in another discovery.
The Nature’s Protection Flea & Tick Prevention is a line of all-natural products that are formulated using medicinal herbs, essential oils, vitamins, and minerals to keep unwanted parasites off your pet. This includes a flea and tick collar, spot-on treatment, herbal bug spray (dogs only), drops and powder to be ingested, and a topical powder that you can sprinkle on your pet’s bed. I haven’t had a chance to try these products yet, but I am definitely hoping to get my hands on them in the near future.
Which of these products are you most excited to get your hands on? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!