People Food Trends and Five Fun Fido (Dog) Treats. What’s the Surprising Connection?

Organic, all natural, whole grain, free-range, Mediterranean diet-inspired, CBC infused … if this sounds like I’m reading a shelf of labels in a health food store, no surprise. These are exactly the natural food trends people are demanding for themselves.

However, it might be a surprise to find out I’m reading from pet treat labels. Apparently, whatever trends in people food, pet food – particularly treats – is not far behind.

According to Amy Kerr from SPINs, a data and insight provider for the pet industry, there’s a definite trend toward people doing for their pet what they do for themselves, especially among Millennials.

Millennials are the most likely to put their pet on a diet similar to theirs, according to SPIN’s recent presentation at Global Pets international trade show.  According to recent data, “In the US, 7 in 10 households has pets. Millennials account for 43% of pet owner growth.” So yes, where the Millennials go, the trends go.

Global Pet Expo, one of the largest pet trade shows in North America, usually hosts pet industry professionals from around the world every March in Orlando, Florida. Not surprisingly, the conference switched to an online format in 2021, allowing greater accessibility and writers like me to access valuable insights from pet professionals, with a specific eye toward pet supply retailers.

Of course, products are the focus of Global Pet Expo, so I put SPIN’s claim to the test. Is the research right? From what I noticed, you bet. Many dog treats, several new to the market, featured human food trends.

Here’s a list of five fun new Fido finds I’m sure my little pandemic pup is anxious get her teeth around:

Plant-based Dog Treats

The plant-based trend isn’t just for people anymore – dogs have their choice of options, which are really just vegetable treats. Unlike our feline friends, dogs actually need some veggies in their diet and what’s cuter than a crunchy veggie burger?

These Veggie Burger Biscuits from Exclusively Dog, a Milwaukee, Wisconsin- based company, are wheat, corn and soy-free and made in the USA, so they check even more trendy boxes. And there part of an even cuter dog cookie line of Exclusively Dog Cookie called Sandwich Cremes-duplex, carob and vanilla flavoured sandwich crème cookies (affiliate link). However, I don’t think your dog will eat the middle first.

Dog Treat International Appeal

If your pet fancies the flavours of Italy (and who doesn’t?), Bood Food from Tasty Pet is new the North American market  from the savory shores of Bella Italia. According to Tasty Pet Organic Bakery, all products are organic and slow dried to preserve nutritional properties. Bood Food is a line of dog food, snacks and dental treats, preservative and grain-free that’s as fun to say as (I assume) it is to eat.

Work-from-Home Longer Lasting Dog Chews

Dehydrated meat products get my dog’s interest, but unfortunately don’t keep it for very long. My dog woofs down treats faster than I can get the package resealed.

Enter Pet’n Shape’s natural long lasting Chewz (affliate link) . No single ingredient here; a rawhide chew is wrapped around a chicken breast and sprinkled with brown rice crispies – yes, crispies because what dog chew is complete without them?

According to Pet ‘n Shape, the product is all natural, fortified with glucosamine and chondroitin to promote joint health and dental hygiene – most important, they keep your pup busy and focused for a while – at least long enough to answer a few emails.

Free-Range Chicken Meat Balls for Dogs

If no cages held the chickens who laid your eggs, then no cages should hold the chickens that make your dog treats, right? JAC Gourmet Free Range Country Chicken Meatball Treats are a freeze dried raw dog treat made with human grade chicken in a human food facility, according to the company. It also guarantees these treats are 96 percent meat, organ and bones (and the other 4 percent appears to be sage and salt).

Similarly, if you care where your dog’s beef comes from, JAC Gourmet (affiliate link) also offers Ranch Raised Texas Beef Freeze Dried Raw Meatball treats with all the same qualities: human grade meat processed in a human grade facility and 96 percent meat, bone and organs. Hormone and antibiotic free too.

Ancient Grains and Probiotics Dog Treats

I like the idea of ancient grains, even if I’m not sure what that means. That goes double for probiotics. Boss Dog brand introduces Boss Dog Propuff in several flavours including cheddar and bacon. According to Boss Dog, these dog energy treats are ‘loaded’ with probiotics and surrounded by a crunchy coating of, you guessed it, ancient grains.

 If that doesn’t sound like enough like the feature on a trendy bistro menu, Boss Propuffs (affiliate link) are seasoned with a ‘proprietary spice blend.’

What else did we learn thanks to Global Pet Expo 2021?

All about new pet products, of course, so that’s coming up on dogtrotting.net. Along with new research about the Animal/People bond, benefits of pets in the classroom and new dog toys for specific play styles. That’s right, your pup has a preferred play style. Find out more in April (along with a contest).

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3 comments

  1. […] I thought much about until I explored the how and why behind many new dog toys revealed at Global Pet Expo 2021, one of the largest industry events in North […]

  2. Sandy Weinstein · · Reply

    Some of these things I think, are just new ways to market or promote new items. I just read where if your dog has liver disease you should not give them cbd oil. I would not give my dogs rawhide. I have been using freeze dried meats for a very long time. I like Steve’s, Open Farm, Stella and Chewy and a few others. I read the ingredients on everything I give my dogs, try to stay away from added salt and sugar and anything I don’t know what it is. Also there is lawsuit against Seresto collar. About time. Too many dogs have died or caused health issues. I got one from my vet before they were sold in the stores. It was the downfall of my dog. She was a healthy girl, then started to have heath issues- kidney, loss use of hind legs but later recovered, got vestibular twice, which caused her back issues from going in tight circles, lost hearing, started to go blind, became allergic to almost all meds and vaccines and developed a very rare form of cancer which is not really seen in min. Schnauzers.

    1. A lot of this is a marketing strategy, yes. I’ve always been curious in trends, though – trying to figure out why people do what they do. The marketing is really for the people. I’m certain my dog doesn’t care whether her grains are ancient or not.
      I’m so sorry to hear about your dog. That is absolutely tragic. I don’t know a lot about Seresto collars because I believe they were never approved to be sold in Canada. I met company reps years ago at a US dog event, and I was skeptical especially when they told me the product wasn’t available in Canada then.

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