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Real Kids Pick 9 Accessories for Small Animals

Their shopping habits interesting to watch.

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TWO GUINEA PIGS reshaped the dynamic in the Spencer-Tippet household, a busy three-kid family brought together by Snickers and Butterscotch. “Going to the pet store helps the kids see all the ways they can play with the pigs, what to feed them and learn how to budget for it,” said Nicole Spencer, who runs the crew of 5, 7 and 12 with her fiancé, Dale Tippet Jr. All the kids have different sets of ideas for their new pets, which makes their shopping habits interesting to watch.


Minecraft Masters

The family’s middle kid and only boy, Aiden, is a Minecraft master. He’s interested in colorful pieces, the feel of bedding textures and small animal toys he can put together himself. “He’s also the most hands-on with the guineas, so we’re always looking for products that help with that,” Spencer says. Toys that give the kids interactive playtime are also a hit with all three.

Critterville Hamster Homes
MidWest Homes for Pets

KEY FEATURES: A variety of cages with fun themes like fast cars and butterflies, with clip-on art and colorful decals to dress up the home for hamsters, gerbils and mice.

SALES TIP: Heads up to gear heads, the wheels are fitted with external tires or flowers that spin around while the pet runs.

midwesthomes4pets.com, (800) 428-8560

$57.99

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Ware Loofah Salad
Ware Pet Products

KEY FEATURES: This small animal snack keeps hammies and rabbits from getting bored in the cage and trims their teeth, too.

SALES TIP: A true buddy treat — supervision is recommended so kids can plop down by the cage while their pets chow down.

warepet.com, (602) 257-8803

$4.99


Small Animal Bear Rug
Marshall Pet Products

KEY FEATURES: Small animals of any size can play hide and seek here, slipping in and out of this rug through the paws and the bear’s mouth.

SALES TIP: Easy cleanup afterward. Toss this fleece blanket in the washing machine when it gets soiled.

marshallpet.com, (800) 292-3424

$14.99


Bigger Wigglers

The youngest, Abby, is a budding preschool performer who brings gifts to the people she loves and walks her imaginary dog every day. “We’d have a much bigger pet if Abigail could have her way,” Spencer says. When Abby shops, she’s investigating ideas for her next companion pet, maybe a ferret or a rabbit. “You can count on her to ask for the biggest toys in the store.”

Teach ’N Treat
Living World by Hagen

KEY FEATURES: An interactive and educational toy that teaches small pets to search for treats through observation, listening and learning.

SALES TIP: Help kids bond with their pets using these interactive tools that keep small animals’ minds active and alert.

hagen.com, (800) 724-2436

$23.99

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CritterTrail Wide Open Door Fun-nel
Kaytee

KEY FEATURES: Designed with Syrian hamsters in mind, this tube is 10 inches long and easy to attach and clean.

SALES TIP: The large top access door is good for kids who want to get both hands in their pet.

kaytee.com, (800) 529-8331

$7.99


LED Lighted Run-About Ball
Kaytee

KEY FEATURES: The illuminated exercise ball for hamsters or gerbils gives off a soft glow that lets people play with pets during their most active hours.

SALES TIP: Good timing — this ball includes a 10-minute timer that can be set for strategic amounts of fun.

kaytee.com, (800) 529-8331

$12.99


Relaxation Time

On the verge of being a teen, Addison likes to chill. She’s also recovering from a scoliosis-related spinal surgery, so she spent a lot of the summer playing inside. “She’s the most patient with the small animals,” Spencer says. “Our house has a lot of energy, and Addison is the one who will sit quietly with a treat and encourage them to come out and play.”

Herbivore Sticks
Exotic Nutrition

KEY FEATURES: Triple baked for crunchiness and covered with a variety of seeds and grains so you can sneak in calcium, vitamins and nutrients.

SALES TIP: Crunch a bunch: These sticks stimulate the natural urge to forage in chinchillas, prairie dogs, degus and hamsters.

exoticnutrition.com, (757) 988-0301

$6.50

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Monsters Wood Munchies
PennPlax

KEY FEATURES: Kids can introduce their real-life pets to big screen characters from MONSTERS INC. with wood munchies based on the film.

SALES TIP: Great for active chewers who need to chomp out their nervous energy.

penn-plax.com, (866) 625-2385

$3.99


ZZZs Super Cozy Suede Hammock
Prevue Pet Products

KEY FEATURES: This super soft brown suede hammock offers a space saving, elevated design for small animals in tight quarters.

SALES TIP: This one-step room renovation gives small animals an instant spot to snooze.

prevuepet.com, (312) 243-3624

$10.99

 

Since launching in 2017, PETS+ has won 11 major international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact PETS+'s editors at editor@petsplusmag.com.

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8 Styles in Dogwear — From Buzz Lightyear to a Cozy Sweater

Know what to stock and make them available.

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THE NATIONAL RETAIL Federation confirms the trend: More than 31 million Americans have an itch to dress up their pets for Halloween — and that’s just one day of the year! When you’re stocking dog clothing, look for daily wear and special event clothes, plus lots of sizes so there’s something for everyone.

Wonderful Coat

Parisian Pet

KEY FEATURES: The modern design features a faux-fur trim on bright red and light gray tones — a striking contrast to make the coat truly stand out.

SALES TIP: Pretty and practical, this coat is both a fashion statement and cozy.

parisianpet.com, (305) 463-7151

$29.99

Fashion Pet Plaid Reversible Coat

Ethical Products

KEY FEATURES: This machine-washable coat features imitation tortoise shell toggle buttons and a hook-and-loop fastener belly band.

SALES TIP: It’s a BOGO — this navy plaid fleece reverses to an all-black version.

ethicalpet.com, (800) 223-7768

$39.59

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Long Sleeve Tees

Paco & Lucia

KEY FEATURES: Peruvian pima cotton T-shirts made of expensive fabric and thoughtful details like contrast stitching.

SALES TIP: Crossover artists: These precious pieces are made by seamstresses experienced in making luxury baby clothes.

pacoandlucia.com, (917) 447-4313

$39

Cookie Monster Costume

Pet Krewe

KEY FEATURES: A plush, bright blue costume of Sesame Street’s foremost food reviewer. It’s easy to get on and off, and good for pets who don’t really like dressing up.

SALES TIP: An Instagram-able “walking costume” where the dog looks like he’s carrying cookies.

petkrewe.com, (504) 458-8911

$24.99

Buzz Lightyear

Rubie’s Costume Company

KEY FEATURES: This officially licensed Buzz Lightyear costume shines with light-up wings, an easy to adjust chest piece and a flexible doggie helmet.

SALES TIP: Stock up for June 21, when the highly anticipated TOY STORY 4 hits big screens.

rubies.com, (516) 326-1500

$24.99

The Bood & The Snood

Ruffina NYC

KEY FEATURES: The Bood is a pullover coat for the body, cut in different styles for male and female dogs, and the Snood is a button-on scarf to keep everybody’s neck warm.

SALES TIP: A two-piece for pets — sell them as a set or mix and match complementary color combinations.

ruuffina.nyc, (917) 499-7888

bood-$40; Snood-$25

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Stumptown Jacket

Ruffwear

KEY FEATURES: A fashionable quilted coat with side-release buckles, reflective trim and a leash portal so it can be worn over a harness.

SALES TIP: An insulated jacket that provides cozy warmth for pups who like cold-weather adventures.

ruffwear.com, (888) 783-3932

$64.95

Jackson Elk Sweater

PetRageous

KEY FEATURES: A light gray sweater accented with a darker gray collar and trim, and set off by the main feature, an elk head silhouette.

SALES TIP: This woodsy design looks high-end but it’s made of wash-and-go material.

petrageousdesigns.com, (800) 893-9893

$17.99

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Fix Up Your Reptile’s Digs with These 8 Products

Set the right scene — and provide comfortable digs — for your reptile friends.

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IN REPTILE HABITATS, pet owners get to use their imaginations. Building micro-studies of rainforests and river bottoms lets people design imaginary ecosystems and innovative environments. Stock up on reptile habitats and accessories designed to keep the dream alive. If you’re building a fantasy rainforest, why spoil it with a metal bowl?

Rainforest Terrarium

Exo Terra / Hagen

KEY FEATURES: An extra-tall glass terrarium with secure, swinging front doors and a fully ventilated top.

SALES TIP: Ideal for tree-dwellers — think boas, tree frogs and leaf-tailed geckos.

exo-terra.com, (800) 724-2436

$159.99

Flexible Climbing Vine

Penn-Plax

KEY FEATURES: A 5-foot stretch of flexible, bendable climbing vine can be used to fill in the gaps between plants and substrate.

SALES TIP: Keep things interesting — this natural-looking climber vine can be bent to create hiding spots and climbing areas.

penn-plax.com, (866) 625-2385

$6

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Bamboo Hide

Galapagos

KEY FEATURES: This 18-inch habitat hideaway is made of real, natural bamboo. When it’s filled with moist moss, the water is slowly released to boost humidity levels in a terrarium.

SALES TIP: Doubles as a tool for egg incubation, tarantula hide and even growing live plants.

galapagosreptilegear.com, (805) 450-6115

$19.99

ReptoHeat

Tetrafauna

KEY FEATURES: A dual temperature basking heater is designed with a microcomputer inside to control basking temperature with accuracy.

SALES TIP: Power up and save, as it’s the most efficient source of basking heat on the market.

tetra-fish.com, (800) 526-0650

$98.99

Naturalistic Terrarium Tropical Kit

ZooMed

KEY FEATURES: An all-in-one terrarium that’s good for beginners and takes up just a little space at 12 by 12 by 18 inches.

SALES TIP: A starter pack to add a little bit of the jungle to your life: day and nighttime lamps, substrates, moss, plants and a how-to guide.

zoomed.com, (888) 496-6633

$109.99

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Wetlands Bowl

T-Rex

KEY FEATURES: A water bowl that’s truly natural — it’s made from half a coconut. Good for non-sterile environments, and particularly good for dart frog setups.

SALES TIP: A multipurpose accessory, you can recommend it as a water dish or seed it to grow moss and plants.

reptilesupplyco.com, (800) 750-9065

$4.49

Bow Front-Opening Terrarium

Zilla

KEY FEATURES: Bowed front doors give extra dimension to this terrarium, which includes a realistic tree background, removable doors and inserts to maintain humidity.

SALES TIP: The bowed glass lends a new depth to this style of reptile keeping.

zillarules.com, (888) 255-4527

$149.99

Black Terrarium Sand

Reptile Sciences

KEY FEATURES: A rich, 100 percent digestible calcium carbonate that also neutralizes odor.

SALES TIP: Reptile patterns pop on this inky background, and it’s versatile — works for snakes, reptiles, turtles and dragons.

reptilesciences.com, (954) 492-8196

$14.99

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8 Habitats and Accessories for Small Animals

Exciting homes for the little furballs.

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SMALL ANIMAL OWNERS want some excitement in the aisle, so give them style options to browse. Stock high-end cages that blend into the home décor, plus cages that play with colorful designs, design-forward architecture and lighting effects. Set up a display model and fill it with related accessories like colorful habitat fillers and hides within the larger space, and point out hidden surprises like extra deep debris trays.

Care Fresh Small Pet Bedding
Healthy Pet

KEY FEATURES: Made from scratch, this ultra-absorbent fluff provides the softest, driest, most comfortable home for small pets.

SALES TIP: Add a cheerful pop of color to any small pet’s home with Tutti Frutti or Blue Paradise options.

healthy-pet.com, (800) 242-2287

$16.99

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Guinea Habitat Plus
MidWest Homes for Pets

KEY FEATURES: In just 15 pounds, this guinea pig cage offers 8 square feet of play space, plus more than a foot of ceiling space.

SALES TIP: Using special lock-in-place ramps, doors and divider panels, customers can customize the space for their pets’ needs.

midwesthomes4pets.com, (800) 428-8560

$61.99

3-Level Hamster Cage
Iris USA

KEY FEATURES: Hamsters get three levels of space in this compact housing unit that features a see-through front and wire sides to keep air flowing.

SALES TIP: ¡Claro! Pet parents will appreciate transparency of this colorful habitat.

irisusainc.com, (800) 320-4747

$54.99

Park Ave Indoor Hutch for Rabbit and Small Animals
New Age Pet

KEY FEATURES: Made with an eco-friendly and durable composite material, this habitat is nontoxic, nonabsorbent and easy to clean.

SALES TIP: A chic look in a snap — this requires no maintenance and can be assembled in minutes.

newagepet.com, (510) 887-5976

$299.99

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Grass Feeder Hut
Prevue Pet Products

KEY FEATURES: A grass and treat holder with ventilated slots and a wide corner entry opening that accommodates most small animals, from rabbits to rats.

SALES TIP: The unvarnished look gives a shabby chic look to this furniture that encourages playing, hiding, snoozing and nibbling.

prevuepet.com, (312) 243-3624

$29.99

CritterTrail LED Color Changing Habitat
Kaytee

KEY FEATURES: The eye-popping habitat includes a color-changing LED and five color settings: nocturnal red, pink, green, purple and yellow.

SALES TIP: Super fun and super safe, this cage features narrow wire spacing and side lock latches, with secure openings on top and in the front.

kaytee.com, (800) 529-8331

$59.95

Tabby Cat Hamster Hideout
Ware Pet Products

KEY FEATURES: The Tabby Cat Hamster Hideout from is a little nook of a getaway for small animals, easy to wipe down and keep clean.

SALES TIP: A versatile piece, you can keep it inside a cage as a play place, or use it for outside the cage activities.

warepet.com, (602) 257-8803

$8.99

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Living World Deluxe Habitat
Hagen

KEY FEATURES: Elegantly styled with an arcing red wire top, this hybrid cage has an upper wire frame and a plastic bottom base, with interior hiding spots for rabbits, guinea pigs and chinchillas.

SALES TIP: Get that quality time in: This habitat features a balcony where pets and people can play around.

hagen.com, (800) 554-2436

$99.99

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