FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 11, 2008
Contact: Tierra Bonaldi at The Impetus Agency
775-322-4022 or tierra@TheImpetusAgency.com
The Internet Has Gone to the Dogs… and Cats, Birds, Fish, Gerbils and Lizards!
-Pets have become oneof the most popular topics online leading to a wave of new social networking sites, product review sites, blogs, news, videos, photos and more all dedicated to pets and their owners according to the American Pet Products Association -
(Greenwich, CT)- First, they became a part of the family. Then, they grew to be the drivers of one of the largest spending sectors in the country. Now, they’ve invaded the internet. We’re talking about the family pet.
A simple Google search of pets will provide you with oh, only about 300,000,000 results. A Google Blog search results in 3,854,049 hits. Google Shopping- another 3 million results. Quite impressive for something that can’t even talk, let alone use a mouse and keyboard. But their owners can, and do. And this has led to an explosion of innovative sites for pets and their owners to connect and share information.
Move over MySpace and Facebook. It’s time to make room for sites quickly growing in popularity like Doggyspace.com, which since its July launch has attracted more than 19,000 members who share photos, videos, advice, and stories, as well as supply their pups' "voices." Other sites for canines and canine lovers include Dogster.com, Uniteddogs and Doggysnaps. You can also create a profile for your dog and connect with other dogs and their owners using the Dogbook application on Facebook.com.
These sites don’t discriminate against other animal types. There is of course MyCatSpace.com, Unitedcats, and Hamsterer.com. And, if a social network hasn’t been created yet for reptile or bunny owners, it’s probably in the works.
Then you have sites for pet owners of all kinds such as www.zootoo.com, the largest social networking site with more than 300,000 registered members and more than 500,000 pet profiles. Another site, Petster.com allows pet owners to write messages to one another about shared interests and offer advice on health problems, training or local dog-friendly parks. PetSmooch is another where, according to the site, pets smooch, owners schmooze. Pawsconnect.com is a site where “pets and pet parents connect, share, educate and simply have fun.” Yet another, Pawspot.com lets users arrange play dates, coordinate pet sitting, and find local pet-friendly parks.
Now, there’s even a downloadable social networking widget designed to connect animal lovers with pets in need of homes called Dogpile.com. People who download the Dogpile adoptable pet widget application gain easy access to information on pets available for adoption through Petfinder.com right from their Facebook or MySpace page.
Dogtime.com, another large media network in the pet market, recently launched the DogTime Blog Network, blogs.dogtime.com, a network of pet-related blogs. More than 150 pet bloggers have signed-up to be part of the DogTime Blog Network.
According to its founders, these blogs are “Hand-picked as the most entertaining, informative and knowledgeable pet blogs, they embody the deep passion and love for pets that is shared by the 8.2 million visitors to the DogTime Media Network of 180 pet related sites.”
“If you asked me three years ago what a social network was, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you,” admits Bob Vetere, President of the largest non-profit organization in the pet industry, American Pet Products Association (APPA), who launched his own blog two months ago called Pet Industry Insights.
“Now there are dozens of these sites purely dedicated to pets and pet owners, which is no wonder given that pet owners consider pets a part of the family and spend over $40 billion dollars every year on them,” says Vetere. “This movement on the internet is very positive for the industry as it enables pet owners to connect with each other while providing convenient access to valuable information on pet products and services that can enhance their pets’ lives.”
Vetere’s organization actively engages in the social media focused on pets. Along with his blog, APPA has its own Facebook page, Youtube videos, twitter feeds, RSS feeds and two other blogs- one focusing on the joys of pet ownership called Pets Add Life (PAL) and the other on the world’s largest annual pet products trade show, Global Pet Expo.
“APPA want to be where pet owners are spending a majority of their time and getting their information,” said Vetere.
According to APPA’s National Pet Owners Survey, the internet has shown tremendous growth since 1998 as an information provider that pet owners turn to, sometimes increasing as much as five times over a two year period.
“This is the wave of the future. Social networking will continue to grow and become a part of our lives, and apparently, our pets’ lives. Which means I better start a page for my dog, Dakota soon,” Vetere jokes.
If you would like more information on this story or an interview with Bob Vetere, please call Tierra Bonaldi at 775-322-4022 or email at tierra@TheImpetusAgency.com.
The American Pet Products Association (APPA) is the leading not-for-profit trade association serving the interests of the pet products industry since 1958. APPA membership includes more than 1,000 pet product manufacturers, their representatives, importers and livestock suppliers representing both large corporations and growing business enterprises. APPA's mission is to promote, develop and advance pet ownership and the pet product industry and to provide the services necessary to help its members prosper. Visit www.americanpetproducts.org for more information.