Pet product manufacturers improve QC to ensure health as they release upscale but low-maintenance pieces.
Safe materials, value-added features and minimal upkeep are the key R&D goals among China manufacturers of pet supplies.
|Xiamen Dadu's dog house is made of China fir.|
Nanofabrics are widely utilized. These kill bacteria, viruses and odor. Suppliers also adopt treated and fumigated materials. Nontoxic paint is likewise employed.
To ensure only safe materials are used, most companies require their upstream partners to provide proof of compliance with hygiene and health regulations. Although there are few industry standards in this line, major markets such as the US and the EU look for certification. The former necessitates makers of dog chews to obtain FDA registration, while kennels must be fumigated and guaranteed by the China government.
Large providers of doghouses look for nontoxicity certification for wood and avoid the utilization of glue, which can release hazardous gases. In addition, suppliers inspect timber for knots, cracks and color variation upon the materials’ arrival and after the typical seven-day outdoor acclimatization.
With regard to finishes, several wooden bed frames are disinfected to prevent mold growth, insect attacks and premature decay while providing protection against sun and water damage.
Wenzhou Ailuo Industry Co. Ltd offers doghouses made of flakeboard and leather. These come with documentation for the packaging materials, including wooden crates and wool that have undergone fumigation. The reports contain information on treatment purpose, and temperature range, chemicals and concentration adopted.
Meanwhile, in response to increasing demand for products that provide pets with more convenience, manufacturers are boosting the output of luxury models. Examples of such versions are high-end doghouses utilizing air conditioning and heating systems, and beds with electric blankets and cushions.
Makers are likewise paying more attention to pet owners’ comfort via the release of low-maintenance alternatives.
Some of the new mats, beds and kennels come in water-resistant fabrics that repel grease and can be cleaned without soap. These functional materials contain nanosilica and nanotitanium dioxide mixed with dispersing agents and adhesives. Test results show such textiles have reliable infrared absorption, which also benefits the animals’ health.
Several pet beds feature removable parts. Examples are versions consisting of two or three mats, making the pieces easier to replace and wash. The bottom is often reinforced with plastic or fiberboard. EPE or PP foam is used as stuffing.
The multisection design is applied in chicken coops as well. One such release from Xiamen Woodart Co. Ltd has separate nesting areas for easier egg collection. Hens may rest on the perch, which can be detached for cleaning. Assembly is also faster because it requires screws instead of nails.
|This pet bed from Petsun has a nylon exterior.|
Beds, mats, doghouses and rabbit hutches are available from China pet supplies manufacturers. Most companies offer various products utilizing similar materials.
Materials, finishes and size affect prices. Makers employ cotton, foam padding, canvas, fleece, CVC twill, sherpa, polyester, PVC and PP. Imported alternatives cost more than domestically sourced variants.
Beds and mats are available in rectangular, oval, round, square, heart, boat, animal, fruit and slipper shapes. Products with covers go for twice as much as cushion-only versions. Low-end models priced from $2 to $6 are made of polyester or cotton nonpile fabric, and stuffed with recycled sponge or polyester fibers. These comprise small and plain pieces.
Midrange designs, quoted between $7 and $10, come in T/C or cotton textiles in plush, fleece or microsuede construction. PP, PU or memory foam is used as filling. Products may have a heating function and a length of 80cm.
Upscale pet beds are covered in plush, suede or velvet, and stuffed with PP cotton or memory foam. Some utilize variants with anti-fungal, and fire- and water-resistant treatments. Trimmings, embroidered patterns, zipper and hook-and-loop closures, arched railings, lace and bed skirts are common. The products begin at $10 and may exceed $15. Those with metal frames come in fixed or foldable constructions.
Kennels are available in box and house configurations. Most are made of fir and pine.
Pet houses in simple structures start at $19, while elaborate designs may reach $200. Some releases boast turrets, stairs, roof decks, fences and wraparound porches.
Upscale models feature tightly aligned wooden boards that are sealed and coated for stronger water resistance and protection against weather damage, decolorizing and cracking. Low-end versions, on the other hand, utilize water-based paint and nails instead of hardware fasteners.
As for rabbit hutches, quotes are between $20 and $300 depending on the surface treatment and number of stories.
Guangxi and Hunan provinces are the typical sources of wood. Because of favorable climate, these areas yield quality pieces with fewer blemishes and are less likely to warp. Alternatives from Jiangxi province are often seen as good substitutes.
Pet supplies have been receiving greater interest as reflected in the more than 30 percent growth in China exports in recent months. The upward trend follows the 10 to 20 percent increase in overseas sales in 2010, leaving manufacturers positive about the rest of 2011. As a result, managing work schedules to accommodate the surge in requests is a big challenge.
Rising production costs also worry companies. Within the next six months, many of them may push up prices by 5 to 10 percent, adding to last year’s markups.
Besides catering to traditional destinations such as the EU and the US, most suppliers will extend their reach to emerging markets. These include South America, East Africa and destinations in Asia.
Note: This article "Pet supplies emphasize reliability, convenience" was originally published by Global Sources, a leading business-to-business media company and a primary facilitator of trade with China manufacturers and India suppliers, providing essential sourcing information to volume buyers through our e-magazines, trade shows and industry research.
All price quotes in this report are in US dollars unless otherwise specified. FOB prices were provided by the companies interviewed only as reference prices at the time of interview and may have changed.
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