How to Find Manufacturers for Pet Product Development

Dec 04, 2023 Chapter 1. Sourcing

If you are making pet product development, there are two ways to approach it.

  • You can start from scratch and research all phases yourself,
  • or you can hire a company to help you.


It’s faster and more reliable to hire a company that can help you work with experts and choose the best options for your business at every level. However, if you want to go it alone, read on for a step-by-step plan on how to make pet products.




How to Develop a Pet Product

Starting a pet product company on your own can be daunting. You must develop a great prototype and find the perfect factory while maximizing your profit margins.


pet product development


Fine-Tune Your Pet Product Ideas

Designing a great pet product requires a lot of research and fieldwork.


1. Understand the Current Industry Landscape

From major competitors such as Petmate, Nestle Purina, Mars Petcare and Mammoth Pet Products to local competitors, it can be tricky to succeed as a pet product manufacturing company.

The way to beat the competition is to know your market.

You should start by researching popular e-commerce sites such as Petsmart, Petco and PetCare Rx. Pay attention to the design, is it user-friendly and what is the overall customer experience?

Business magazines are also a good source of research. Some good examples are animal health magazines, pet magazines, and pet food industry magazines.

The next step is to visit stores and evaluate advertising and promotions. Look for items in a variety of price ranges and categories. You can use online directories to find pet product companies near you.

Another excellent resource for measuring the popularity of your idea is Google Trends. Browse for buzzwords like “pet toys” or “pet products”. More specific product searches are also helpful to see popular keywords. You can filter by time and location to focus on patterns that have occurred over the past few hours, days, months, years, etc.

You’ll know you’ve had success when your idea meets a specific consumer need that most pet owners think is lacking. A tip here is to search forums like Reddit to get a sense of the current state of what people like and dislike about the products on the market.


2. Think About Your Profit Margin

First, your product should be safe, high quality, and meet the requirements of unrecognized customers.

After that, you need to consider the industry as a whole. Cost, competitiveness and the ability to grow your company are all important determinants.

Certain industry norms, such as current market trends, user-friendliness and fair net profit, will affect your costs.

To learn more about how to develop a commercially viable concept, visit the U.S. Small Business Administration’s educational resource, “Know Your Market.

Finally, make sure you can expand your product range to achieve growth. Developing the same product for different animals and changing the theme is a great way to start thinking about growth potential. This makes your idea more interesting to key retailers and helps you generate more interest and potential revenue. 


3. Figure Out the Cost-Benefit

The best way to assess cost effectiveness is to build a prototype.

It is important to know exactly what the costs and logistics are before proceeding with commercial production. The cost of using a prototype is calculated as an estimate based on various accounting techniques. The cost of producing a prototype will vary depending on the complexity of your concept.

If your product requires geometric design or metal raw materials, a prototyping company is your best choice. You can make organic pet food prototypes at home, but approval from the relevant safety agencies and pet product manufacturers is still required.

Once your prototype is complete, contact the potential manufacturer for an estimated cost, which will vary depending on the size of your production.


4. Comply with Safety Regulations

The FDA does not require pre-market approval for pet foods, but they do emphasize the safety and nutritional value of the ingredients used in pet foods.

The European Pet Food Industry Federation FEDIAF has detailed guidelines and regulatory mechanisms for pet foods that

Confirmation of the essential nutritional value required for cat and dog food. Required levels for cat and dog food and
Forcing the pet food industry to follow strict quality control.
Establish standard nutritional guidelines for pet foods for healthy animals.
Help connect pet food manufacturers, pet care professionals, and relevant authorities by conducting research and regularly updating safety guidelines.
Other pet products are much more strictly regulated in the EU than elsewhere, and general consumer laws are sufficient.

Global Food Safety Resources outlines the general rules you need to consider when starting a pet products company.


5. Protect Your Intellectual Property

Hire a patent attorney to conduct a patent search, including scanning multiple databases for pre-existing patents.

We do not recommend that you obtain your own patents, as the process is complex and requires specialized knowledge. It is recommended that you hire a professional.

This is an important part of your investigation, as large stores may have patented designs that are not yet available to consumers.



Know Your Market

Identify your customers’ hobbies and interests are, and their gender and age.

By defining it first, you can tailor your marketing and advertising so that it resonates with a specific demographic. Packaging has changed a ton in the pet industry since last year, so new businesses must be on top. 

If you prefer to feed your pet organic pet food, you may enjoy tailored pet products, such as fancy collars, pet beds, and pet accessories. Many older pet owners are drawn to dry food and strong collars because they save time and are more effective. 

Pet fashion is underrepresented in large retail outlets so smaller businesses might thrive in this market. Petpedia says that 60% of millennials buy vests, sweaters, and other pet clothes. Long-lasting fabrics and unique thinking could just lead to success.

This helps you determine a decent price range and manufacturing cost.



Start Designing 

Having an idea of the market, your product, and your key demographic will help you start designing.

We’ve got some tips on making pet products people will love.

  • Brainstorm Your idea will be even better after a brainstorming session. Here’s a checklist to help you:
  • Identify the product’s core function and intended purpose in your brand’s mission and message.
  • How do you come up with a unique selling point (USP)?
  • How much should you charge for your product?
  • Who your primary audience is, and how you will market to them.
  • Physical stores, online stores, and malls where you can buy stuff.


We’ll use your competitive market analysis as a guideline and the idea-generating session as inspiration. 


  • Create preliminary product sketches yourself or hire an artist. 
  • Try sketching out sizes, colors, and possible variations (like flavors or adding younger animals).

3D Model

  • You can start making a 3D model when you have the preliminary sketch. Artists create digital 3D versions of their drawings using CAD (Computer-Assisted Design) software. This process takes about a week.
  • Zbrush is an excellent program for making 3D models, but we strongly recommend having a professional make it for you.




It’s a cheap way to test your product without committing to anything. Materials play a big role in prototyping. Just some fabric and a sewing machine can let you make clothes and soft toys. Craft stores have stuffing. However, you’ll need a professional for food bowls or metallic stuff.  Food bowls and other things made of metal:

  • For metal casting, professionals use silicone molds, a method that works on a variety of materials.
  • Geometrically complex models are better suited to CNC machines.
  • Die-casting creates a working model for aluminum and iron using metal mold cavities and high pressure.
  • If you just want a few samples, injection molding is not cheap.



Find A Pet Product Manufacturer

Your mass production needs to be able to accommodate you. Collaboration with a well-known retailer will speed up your search since they’ll already deal with trustworthy manufacturers and wholesalers.  You can buy from retailers or manufacturers. Manufacturers will let you control the production line directly, while retailers let you focus on the creative stuff.

You can sell them your idea, and they’ll handle the rest. The downside is that you don’t have creative control. You can control everything about the manufacturing process when you use local manufacturers. Things can be changed if they don’t work.

There’s a much cheaper way to make pet products. Find a factory at a trade show. Make sure you get organic cat and dog food from agencies specializing in it, says Packaged Facts. Or, you can find pet supplies manufacturers in China to save the cost.

Obtain the services of the local economic development office, which may be able to connect you with a foreign business expert.

You can start your search with these databases:




How to Cooperate with your Pet Supply Manufacturer

Your understanding of pet products is pretty solid at this point. Here’s what you need to do.

  1. Plan 

Before production starts, here’s what you need to know. You’ll need:

  • A detailed idea
  • A prototype
  • A contract with a manufacturer


  1. Raw Materials

Raw materials are acquired at the start of production. This step will change depending on what you’re making.

Supplyia has supply chain experts who can help you adapt to the market’s needs. To get your materials, it’s really important to have a good relationship with your suppliers.

You need tools, services, and raw materials to begin the manufacturing process, so do competitive bidding and ROI analysis.


  1. Manufacturing Line

A key part of the process is using raw materials, machines, analytics, and other industry knowledge. Get expert opinions from a big network, like Supplyia, to speed up the process.

Here are a few things to do:

  • Demand Forecasting
  • Process Streamlining and Predicting Bottlenecks
  • Throughput Accounting Analysis
  • Performance and Productivity Monitoring


  1. Delivery

It’s important to know how it’s delivered. Depending on your preferences, there are plenty of great options. Depending on the space and the delivery methods, different models improve performance

Here are the key players:

  • Wholesalers play a huge role in inventory flow since they control it. Building lasting relationships and figuring out delivery methods is hard if you work alone.
  • Retailers are just as crucial since they interact directly with your customers.


If you want to determine a good profit margin, product placement, and promotional shelf, you have to look into retailer incentives.


  1. Consumer Base

The consumer is the last part of the system. A thorough examination is necessary to evaluate the market value, facilitate returns, help place the product, and satisfy customers. We must look at consumer behavior extensively and collect and analyze plenty of data.

Have a policy in place for returning and replacing defective stuff. Customers will be happier, and the company’s reputation will improve.

These factors will ensure that your pet product company is successful because they are crucial to customer retention.



Get Started

The process of making pet product development can be tough for first-time entrepreneurs. 

We at Supplyia are here to help:

  • Make your manufacturing line more efficient by figuring out what’s best for every step.
  • From conception to completion, we’ll be there for you.
  • Make the best possible product with a team of specialists.
  • Choosing the right manufacturing facility is important.
  • We’ll make sure you’re updated on the production.
  • Don’t make beginner mistakes like lack of foresight.
  • We can help you build a product that’s worth investing in.
  • Preventing wastage of money and significantly boosting profitability.
  • Make sure your product is better than anybody else’s.
  • Maintain customer loyalty by delivering quality products. 

You’ve come to the right place if you want to start a pet product development! 


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