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TODAY contributor

Explainer: The craziest new pet products

  • The Global Pet Expo is a showcase for the latest breakthroughs in pet health — and also a stage for the whimsical and wacky. In a purr-pet-ual quest to set trends for our furry friends, vendors presented more than 3,000 new products in Orlando, Florida, last week at America’s largest pet industry showcase.

  • Diva dog


    Starstruck pet parents can turn their pooches into clones of “California Gurl” Katie Perry. A canine outfit complete with cupcake bra, blue wig and sunglasses is just one celebrity look that Animal Planet will be releasing shortly in its first clothing line for pets; other options include Jurassic-age monsters like the stegosaurus and the raptor. AnimalPlanet.com

  • Pooch pop

    An outfit called Pet Pop is marketing what looks like soda pop for dogs (actually it’s bottled Australian spring water in a variety of bright colors such as Betty Blu and Tiger Lily). petpop.com.au

  • Doggie treats

    To go with your Pet Pop, how about some Barksters — treats from Living Pet Products that resemble air-puffed crunchy chips for humans? They come in nine flavors, including alfalfa and chicken and sweet potato and beef. Instead of pooches begging for human snacks, perhaps pet parents will now nibble from the dog bowl instead (they’ll probably be better off — Barksters are low-calorie and made from natural ingredients). lovingpetsproducts.com

  • Security blanket

    Lennette Newell  /  petlinkssystem.com
    Hate to air your dirty laundry in public? Give it to your cat or dog instead! The Scents of Security is a soft toy that can be stuffed with dirty socks and other personal items. Pets won’t suffer from separation anxiety when left home alone because they have your scent to keep them calm and content until you return. petlinkssystem.com

  • Fishing for talent

    For those that prefer larger aquariums but are concerned that the fish are bored swimming around all day, the R2Fish School will teach your finny friends the aquatic version of soccer and how to nose a ball through a basketball hoop. r2fishschool.com

    Desktop pets made an appearance at the Pet Expo. The Betta Box plugs into a computer via a USB cable to provide betta fish, hermit crabs and lizards with mood lighting options such as sunlight yellow and moonlight blue. aa-aquarium.com

  • Jeweled jelly tones

    The latest aquatic pet? Jellyfish. They are being specially bred in San Francisco and come in a circular aquarium with a specially designed water flow so that the jellies keep floating and appear to change color according to the programmable LED lighting. The sealed tank serves a dual purpose: It also offers excellent entertainment for cats. Jellyfishart.com

  • Flown the coop


    Backyard chicken products popped up all over Global Pet Expo, from state-of-the-art chicken coops to hen aprons, devices worn by hens to protect them from being attacked by roosters during mating. The poultry clothing comes in a variety of fabrics, from camouflage to pink. Then there’s the Birdy Bra: a supportive chest protector for birds suffering from crop stasis, a condition which causes the crop to droop — rather like pendulous breasts on women. It's available in sizes from A to double DD. crazykfarm.com.

  • Pooper scooper

    Talk about a super pooper scooper: The Pooch Power Shovel is designed to suction poop directly into a throwaway bag. This rechargeable battery-operated gadget is designed to work on any terrain and even deals with (ew) doggie diarrhea. petpowerproducts.com

    Love your pets, but hate their shedding hair? The Zoinks is an upright vacuum loaded with tools, including a de-shedding blade that fits onto the suction hose so that it captures flying fur directly into the machine while you groom. Bissell.com

    No need to flee from fleas anymore: The FleaVac is a suction tool with a patented nozzle that fits on to most standard vacuum cleaners and is designed to suction fleas and dirt directly out of the fur of cats and dogs. FleaVac.com

  • Petcasso

    Many doggie daycare centers around the country offer painting classes for pooches. Now Art-Casso painting kits let both Fluffy and Fido create a design for their own home dinner mat. The non-mess system produces canine and feline masterpieces in minutes. Artcasso.com

    Once you pooch has painted his work of art, you can hang it inside The Lodge, a dog’s ultimate home away from home that you can set up in the backyard. It has a balcony that can be customized with a pet drinking fountain, and a spacious interior that can be fitted with a flat-screen TV so that your pet can watch his favorite Animal Planet shows in the comfort of his own, er, dog cave. advantagemarketing.com

  • IPup

    For the techie pet owner, teeny T-shirts emblazoned Ipawd and IBark are available from IStyleOriginals.com.

  • Keeping track

    The Pet n’ Place is promoted as “a humane portable pet management system.” Fill this large polypropylene tote bag with books, rocks or up to 80 pounds of sand, then leash your dog to it. The weighted bag will restrict his movement, improve his behavior and stop excessive jumping. (It's surely designed for home use, because with an 80-pound dog on a leash in one hand and an 80-pound bag of rocks in the other, no outing is going to be a walk in the park.) petnplace.com

Video: Fun finds for your furry friends

  1. Closed captioning of: Fun finds for your furry friends

    >>> now on today's pets, innovative new products for our four-legged friends. our workdays get longer, our dogs are spending a lot more time home alone .

    >> it's sad, isn't it?

    >> how do you raise a socially well adjusted dog when nobody is home. it's all about the toys.

    >> she is co-founder of daily treat and a specialty pet boutique.

    >> we're into your title.

    >> thanks for having me.

    >> let's talk about the food portion of the program here.

    >> a busy pet say happy pet. we have here the kong wobbler. all it is you place treats within this little hole here. my dog loves this. they bump it around the house and the treats intermittently spill out. there's no nubs they can chew off. they just bump it around the house and a treat intermittently comes out.

    >> he doesn't like certain things.

    >> what's happening down here with this ball?

    >> this is called the kibble nibble. and similarly you place treats within the ball.

    >> what is this dog's name?

    >> bentley.

    >> is bentley yours?

    >> yeah. you place treats within the ball. they intermittently come out. and it's also a great way for mealtime. some dogs eat their food too quickly. you can feed them this way. so that's a great thing to --

    >> he saw it come out.

    >> they have to work on it.

    >> kick it for an hour and a half.

    >> this is one of my favorite new toys. it's ecofriendly. uses plastic water bottles instead of squeakers. what's cool, a lot of dogs love the sound. so you stick it inside this. isn't that great?

    >> and once they puncture and ruin it, just put another water bottle in there.

    >> are these leashes?

    >> this is a brand new company called cycle dog. these are made out of recycled bike tire tubes. and so a lot of bike tire tubes go into the land fills every year. they repurpose them into collars and leashes. i believe this one even has a bolt opener on it.

    >> speaking our language.

    >> i like this a lot.

    >> i thought you'd appreciate that.

    >> is that a doggy bed?

    >> what's really great about this is a brand new product called the doggy duvet. you get this little netted sack. you can stuff it with old t-shirts, textiles and then you can recover it with these duvets. say you have a dog bed. it's ugly. you can just buy this bedding stack and get the duvet for about $20.

    >> very cute.

    >> these are biodegradable poop bags. we're picking up a lot of you-know-what these days. these degrade at the same rate as an apple. if your dog was to poop on an apple, then you can do the math.

    >> he likes to poop on bananas.

    >> is this an air freshener ?

    >> this is a nontoxic eco-friendly cleaning product for urine and, well, might have been handy this morning.

    >> we know over here.

    >> yes.

    >> we were thinking that. there's a stench.

    >> a little funky in here. you can just spray it and walk away . you don't have to blot away. just spray and walk away .

    >> oh, cute dog.

    >> oh, my gosh.

    >> this is isaac .

    >> isaac . and his ears. isaac is chewing on his veggie bed. we stuffed the sack and now he's on his new little bed there.

    >> this right here.

    >> come on over.

    >> these are all organic natural treats. there's no byproducts or fillers. these are freeze dried chicken breasts. also many of these are grain free. a lot of dogs have allergies to grain like people do. so these are great for pets and for those that might have --

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