|Top pet gifts, toys
Fido's got a brand
new bag. And a pair of hiking boots. And a cashmere
sweater. And his very own GPS tracker. And, a glow-in-the-dark
collar! Do these gifts sound ideal for your treasured
They do for many pet owners. Nearly 6 million American
dog and cat households throw pet birthday parties according to the
2005-2006 American Pet Products Manufacturers Association's pet
owners survey. Not only are our furry and feathered friends feted
with cakes and treats but, more and more, pets are the recipients
of both lavish and practical gifts for all occasions. The items
pet owners are buying for their family pets might surprise you.
pet parents are purchasing luxurious gifts so that their pets can live a lifestyle
similar to their own. That means treating them to organic food, rides in stylish
designer bags and selecting only the softest clothes and flashiest accessories
for them to wear.
Bruce Haas, co-owner of Chicago pet store, Tails
in the City, says this trend of showering your pet with a lifestyle
like you're accustomed to is growing, noting the rise of status
toys and accessories such as Chewy Vuitton toy purses, Jimmy Chew
shoe toys and Sniffany & Co. beds.
Veterinarian and author Debra Eldredge confirms the
luxury trend. "People are very into making their dogs comfortable,
and if they can make them fashionable, that's even better."
|If you're of the mind to fetch a fashionable
present for a special canine or kitty, chew on our
list of haute pet trends.
"People treat their pets as part of the family," says
Andrew Shure, founder of Shure
Pets, a direct seller of pet products. That means you can forget letting them
shiver in the winter. At least not while cashmere sweaters, hoodies, snow boots
and scarves can shield them against harsh weather conditions.
You can also forget letting them sleep on carpet,
grass and concrete. These days, pet pillows, throws and beds of
every size, style and color cushion pets while they rest.
"Designer clothes and beds are very hot,"
While seasonal pet wear can be found in nearly every
pet store both online and offline, we priced polo shirts at $34
black hoodies for $40 at Tails
in the City and a convertible parka for $64 at Lucky
Dog Pet Boutique.
Don't forget their paws!
"Pet owners are definitely looking for footwear,"
says Hollus Gessler, owner of Chicago-based pet boutique, Wigglyville.
Modern canines will never have to suffer the pain of walking bare-pawed
in the rain or snow, over rocks or hot sand or even on slippery
hardwood. Pet lovers searching for cute boots that also serve a
functional purpose don't even have to walk out into the elements:
online pet boutiques keep them in stock. At Tails
in the City Lilyboots sell for $70 to $80 while G2s, rubber-soled,
doggy sneaks retail for $59 at Hands
Less practical but still cute, scarves warm
furry necks and retail for $21 at Vavadog.