For the most part, it is impossible to figure out what the best stuff to use is because there are so many Buzz words flying around that want to influence your buying decision. As Pommy Mommies we want to do the best thing for our Pomeranians but what is the best? – “Made in the USA”, “Natural Pomeranian Treats”, “Organic Pomeranian Products” or “Eco-Friendly Pomeranian Toys”? The pet industry, especially toys, dry dog food, wet dog food, and many grooming products is filled with these new “marketing” terms that it makes your head spin. So I decided to help you define these terms so you can make better buying decisions when it comes to your furry baby.
Basically, manufacturers label their products specifically to confuse you in hopes that you would buy their product over another brand. I know, it’s deceptive and a little frightening but a little knowledge goes a long way.
The label “Natural”, “Naturally” and many other derivatives seems to be pretty popular and will most likely be for a long time coming. When I was a kid I would see a commercial on TV for a men’s store that had a tagline, “an educated consumer is our best customer”… and in this case it couldn’t be more true. This post should help you as a buying customer/ Pommy Mommy understand what you are really purchasing.
Natural – Natural substances are defined as a substance or chemical that was made by a “living” organism that was found in nature. So water and bark are a natural product. Hmmm… I don’t think I want bark in my dog’s food. What’s really weird is that since the term “natural” is even regulated yet manufacturers can “synthesize or “man make” a product and some how call it natural. Obviously the term is used to have images of trees, forests and nature dancing in your head… a nice serene scene away from people and polluted city streets. It’s almost as useful as “Gluten free” Skittles.
Eco-friendly (or “environmentally friendly”) – is the most useless term when it comes to identifying a so-called “green” product. Manufacturers use this term in order to make you believe that their product was produced using minimal impact on the environment and that the product itself will have minimal impact. The only problem with that logic is that there is no “agency” to regulate what eco-friendly even means. So companies can use it at will for anything.
Organic – Now this is a little more strict in specific guidelines and is supposed to be a heavily regulated industry. The United States, Europeon Union, Canada, and Japan and a host of other countries require anyone who wants to label their products “organic” to have a special certification that enable them to label “organic”. You are not allowed to use man made chemicals such as fertilizers, pesticides, antibiotics, food additives, GMO’s (genetically modified foods), irradiated foods, or sewer run off… I still don’t know why they would use it for plants or food but that’s in the rules. All organic product companies have random on-site inspections at their manufacturing plants.
Locally Made or Grown – This so-called “feel good” phrase is meant to conjure up feelings that the product was made in your neighborhood or backyard. The theory behind this in regards to “being green” is that the product has reduced it’s “carbon” footprint by not having to use a bunch of gasoline or petro-fuels in order to tranport it all around the nation or from a foreign country.
Green – Companies began doing “Green” marketing in Europe. In the decade of excess called the 1980’s of which I was born, Europeans found that certain products were very harmful to the environment as well as the atmosphere… such as hairspray. So some of the idealistic company CEO’s decided to start producing products that did less damage to Mother Earth. It didn’t take long for the United States businesses to see the benefit of not raping the environment and many companies began there own campaigns of producing environmentally friendly products. The movement quickly caught on in the US and has been growing steadily ever since. The production of “ecologically” safer products, recyclable and biodegradable packaging, energy-efficient operations, and better pollution controls are all results of green manufacturing and marketing. A good point to understand is that “green” is relative in it’s use. It means that there is “less” damage then what the standards of production are currently in use. It does not mean that there is absolutely “no” damage to the environment… and again, this term is not regulated.
Other terms used in the marketplace
Holistic – The term is basically defined as treating the body as a whole. Many times itchy skin might just be a symptom of something happening somewhere else in the body of your Pomeranian… like their digestive system. Most Veterinarians treat specific symptoms and attack them as an isolated ailment.
Homeopathic – Is the ability to use very diluted substances that can usually cause sickness in healthy Pomeranians to treat the symptoms of the very sickness they can cause. Kinda-like penicillin is a bacteria to kill a bacteria. Both holistic and homeopathic are considered alternative medical treatments. Organic Pomeranian Products
Naturopathy – known as “Natural Medicine” is another alternative practice of medicine that does not use drugs and tries to find natural remedies and supplementation to help boost your Pomeranian’s immune system to ward off illness.
… but wait, there’s more… Organic Pomeranian Products
The “Natural Products” market is growing at break neck speed and the bigger it gets the more confusing the marketing and labels will become. It is a money grab to help separate you from your money. Pommy Parents are asking more and more for Natural and Organic products to keep their furry baby healthy and with them a long time. Manufacturers know this and will do whatever it takes to increase their appeal to customers seeking “natural” goods. Caveat emptor. Organic Pomeranian Products
As a fellow Pommy Mommy I wanted you to know what these terms mean to you and your Pomeranian… so you can make the best decisions on the health of your best friend.