Posted: August 16, 2013
I guess I should not be surprised that a televison channel has been dedicated to dogs. In this day and age of realityTV, it doesn't surprise me that a DirectTV station went on the air this month that is designed to appease man's best friend.
DogTV Network started August 1st on DirecTV as a free service. Beginning August 15th, subscibers were to pay a $4.99 monthly fee to entertain their canine companions. I watched the new channel to see if it was something that I would invest in, but I'm still not sure if my three dogs are interested.
DogTV is an extension of what the marketers know about pet owners. Total spending in the United States on pets is expected to hit a record $56 billion this year, according to estimates from the American Pet Products Association (APPA). That's up from $53 billion last year and $51 billion in 2011.
Sadly, I contribute to those statistics. I can't go through the grocery isle without picking up the tasty snacks that the three dogs absolutely love. In fact, the time spent giving the canines their treats has become my personal time with them.
In addition, seven out of 10 dog owners have purchased some type of toy for their pet in the past 12 months, according to the APPA. Dog owners have spent an average of $41 each on toys throughout 2012. And, since nearly 57 million households in the U.S. own dogs, that means more than 83 million dogs are owned. You do the math.
One of the features about DogTV that I thought was rather interesting was the low-frequency classical music that is designed to calm a pet's anxiety.
One of my dogs, Gigi, the 11-year-old full-bred Afghan, sleeps throughout most of the day. I'm not sure she was affected by the background music. Christopher, the 12-year-old mix who is only about eight pounds and fearful of most anything, looked nervously at me while I observed his behavior. Lily, the two-year-old rescue dog, who is always on overdrive, walked around in circles like she's prone to do since she must have some Border Collie in her.
I doubt that I'll spend the extra five bucks on DogTV. But if I did, it wouldn't be the first time that I bought something silly for my dogs.
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