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Just when you think you've seen it all, you take a walk down a new aisle at Global Pet Expo and you're faced with a bevy of products you can't wait to check out. Here, we've curated a list of our top 10 dog products that have our tails wagging. The hardest part of putting this list together? Narrowing it down from all the amazing options!
The Ruffwear Swamp Cooler is on our radar as a great summer option. The new airmesh material increases the durability of this cooling coat, and the buckles are hidden beneath the material to avoid uncoupling or getting tangled. And it couldn't be simpler: Just soak the coat in water, ring it out and put it on, and this lightweight coat does the rest by reflecting sun to deflect heat for active dogs. The reflective strip on the stitching makes even the darkest dogs easier to spot in low light.
Ruffwear Swamp Cooler, $54.95.
Fun and ecofriendly, DOOG's The Sticks toys take a popular natural dog toy — sticks — and make them safer for your dog's mouth. The DOOG (Dog Owners Outdoor Gear) owners created Woody and Twiggy, the two members of The Stick family, after their stick-loving Pug kept getting mouth injuries from real sticks. Plus, the handy grip and rope makes throwing and picking up easy for you.
DOOG The Sticks Twiggy and Woody, $16.99.
Blind dogs are amazingly adaptable, but as pet owners, we want to make it as easy as possible for sight-impaired pets to get around. The Tracerz Scent Markers allow dogs to use their incredible sense of smell to navigate your home without running into obstacles.
Tracerz Scent Markers for Blind Dogs, available on Amazon for $19.95.
We love that Soggy Doggy products are soft, super absorbent, and can be used for wet, muddy or snowy dogs. The new Slopmat tackles a problem many dog owners face — dripping chins and sloppy drinkers at the food and water bowl. Best of all, it's easy to wash! Just be sure to use plenty of water; it is very, very absorbent, after all.
Soggy Doggy Slopmats, $21.99.
In the Company of Animals
"Chowhound" takes on a new level of meaning when you see a hungry dog wolf down a bowl of food in what seems like seconds, but this kind of gorging can be detrimental for dogs and can cause bloat. The Buster DogMaze is designed to help with that issue by forcing the dog to push his food out of the maze, one piece at a time.
In the Company of Animals Buster DogMaze is coming soon to major retailers for $39.99.
Petmate's new Self-Warming Beds utilize the heat-reflecting technology used in Mylar "space blankets." And really, isn't your dog worthy of astronaut-level pampering? This technology helps your pet stay warm and cozy without any concern about leaving the bed plugged in and creating a fire hazard. Plus, the corduroy and faux lambswool design will fit in with just about any decor.
Petmate Self-Warming Beds will be available in June 2013. Prices range from $24.99 for the 19-inch cat bed to $69.99 for the rectangular lounger.
Floppy Ears Design
A visible dog is a safer dog, and this water-resistant, battery-free LED Rechargeable Dog Safety Light from Floppy Ears Design for your dog's collar greatly increases visibility. The bright orange color makes it easy to spot, even when the light isn't on. The rechargeable light holds a charge for up to two hours, making it ideal for nighttime walks, although it might not be the best option for a longer camping trip.
Floppy Ears Design LED Rechargeable Dog Safety Light, $19.99.
If a dog and his tennis ball go together like peanut butter and jelly, then consider Pet Projekt's tennis bal the potato chips that come alongside that tasty sandwich. It's a durable, chew-resistant rubber shell that holds a standard tennis ball, so when the original tennis ball gets a little too gross for your liking, you can pop in a new, fresh, clean ball.
Pet Projekt Tennis Bal will be available this summer for an estimated retail price of $7.99.
Hugs Pet Products
The Hugs Chilly Mat has added a new XL size to its lineup of cooling mats that stay about five degrees cooler than air temperature. They can also be put in the freezer for additional cooling action. We love the fact that this product lets pets choose — or not choose — to chill out. The fact that it's virtually indestructible and nontoxic makes it even better.
Hugs Pet Products Chilly Mat is available in sizes XS to L and retails for $11.99 to $29.99. The XL size will be available in April for $49.99.
Many of our dogs love to burrow, and the Snuggle Bed from P.L.A.Y. allows them to do just that. It's a soft, cozy sack that they can tunnel right into, but can also be folded down to act as more of a standard, fluffy bed.
P.L.A.Y. Snuggle Bed will be available for purchase in late spring or early summer and retail for $55 to $75.
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