Pet lovers are making their Christmas shopping lists and checking them twice. But what do you get for the dog or cat that has everything?
How about a giant red rubber tongue or lavender and white rubber dentures?
For the cat or dog that has been especially nice this year, you might want to consider custom-made pet-sized furniture,slip-covered in fabrics that match your decor.
The array of pet gifts is dizzying, and many are available in the under $10 range, including the $7.99 dentures.
There is apparently no limit on the amount some people are willing and able to spend. For instance, an extra large sofa, 41/2 inches-by-29 inches, is $515.
"American spending on pets has nearly doubled, despite the recent sluggish economy," says a recent news release from The American Pet Products Manufacturers Assn. Pet products are now a $31 billion industry, the group reports. Sixty-two percent of all households own pets, and more than half of those owners buy gifts for pets.
This year Americans will spend $5 billion on holiday gifts for pets, according to Orca Communications Unlimited LLC. The Arizona company is a public relations and marketing firm that specializes in pet products and services.
Orca has compiled an Online Media Guide To The Best Pet Products, "featuring the most innovative, adorable and useful items for our four-legged, furred and feathered friends."
You don't have to be a member of the media to see this guide: www.bestproductsmediaguide.com.
A warm, dry, comfortable place to sleep is one of the things that cats and dogs need. A company on the Orca list takes pet beds to a whole new level.
The pet furniture is made by DJ's Designer Pet Furniture.
"We're presenting a new concept for the dog who has everything," says the Web site, which can be found at www.djpets.com.
The site features pampered dogs and cats lounging on chairs, sofas and chaise lounges. A 22-inch by 19-inch chair is $166. A chaise lounge is $425. Extra slipcovers and cushions also can be ordered.
One of the goofier items available this year is a toy called Humunga Tongue.
The red rubber tongue is nearly nine inches long. The top of the tongue is a ball, somewhat bigger than a golf ball. When a dog puts the ball in his mouth, the oversized tongue hangs out of the dog's mouth. There are two sizes available, for small dogs or large.
Humunga Tongue is available for $12 at www.moodypet.com. The tongue is the product of a Philadelphia company, Moody Pet Inc., which also makes Moody Dog and Moody Cat collars. The collars have stones that change colors to reflect the mood of the pet.
Collars are $35 for cats and $40-$45 for dogs.
The $7.99 dentures are part of the Simpsons' Pet Toys line from Fox Licensing & Merchandising and Kellytoy U.S.A. Inc.
When a dog bites down on the hard rubber dentures, he'll look like he has a mouth full of false teeth.
"Grampa's Dentures" are also available as part of four-pack of softer vinyl chew toys with squeakers for $5.99.
The other toys are Duff's Beer Can, Donut, Remote, Blinky, Hamburger, Bart's Skateboard and Maggie's Pacifier.
The Simpson pet toys are available exclusively at Target stores.