Hugo & Otto Continue to design and innovate luxury handmade dog beds during COVID19 with their unique 2 Tier Mattress System and their York Sitting Pretty Cushion Dog Beds & Lincoln As Nice As Pie Cushion Dog Beds available in 2 sizes and in 4 colours launch date: 3 April 2020.
When people think about the differences between dogs and cats, what often springs to mind is how much more time cats spend sleeping. The perception is that cats are hardly ever awake while dogs, on the other hand, are always up and ready for fun. While it’s true that cats do seem to spend most of their lives nodding off, dogs don’t exactly skimp on the snoozing. In fact, according to statistics they can spend up to 18 hours a day snoozing, sleeping and following the sun spots around in the house feeling the warmth on their coats.
We all know that sleep is an essential component to overall health and happiness including our pets. Like us, they need comfortable beds and if they settle in the same spot each night they feel safe in their familiar surroundings. Remember when we are away, there is absolutely nothing like our own bed. And so, ask yourself if we can have this why not of our dogs? and let’s face it, if you settle your dog in before you retire then you are most likely to have a full nights sleep yourself so, win win all round. But what of the dog bed if the bed they are given to sleep in is lumpy, uncomfortable and your dog will not settle in it and that’s how we at Hugo & Otto created our first seedling thoughts of starting our company way back in 2008. We at Hugo & Otto strive to design and make the very best in British made dog beds and design and with our new York Sitting Pretty Cushion Dog Bed and Lincoln As Nice As Pie Cushion Dog Bed with our unique Hugo & Otto 2 Tier Mattress System we are ahead of the pack in design and innovation.
YORK SITTING PRETTY CUSHION DOG BED - with unique 2 Tier Mattress System
Driven by the awareness of how important sleep is to their pets, dog owners are seeking out bedding that provides a safe and secure space for their four legged companions. And, since this need is constant, dog bedding is a category that pet specialty retailers should get a good handle on.
The demographics of pet ownership underscore the importance of these products. According to PETA year end reports of 2018 68% of all households have at least one pet (don’t forget, cats use bedding too). Additionally, approximately 45% of dog owners have a senior dog that’s seven years or older.
Elderly senior dogs and cats suffer from the same bone ailments as us humans and suffer from arthritis, sore or inflamed joints, etc and like us need vital spinal support to aid a peaceful and comfortable rest. Pet parents want a bed that will assist in alleviating these issues and like Hugo & Otto look to sourcing the best in orthopaedic mattresses. We source hypoallergenic, dust mite free, Vasco 50 100% memory foam mattress pads that are used to make human beds and bedding and mould to the body of your dog. We select the3” slabs which we find offer more comfort than the deeper 6” versions that are rock hard.
Hugo & Otto look to constantly innovate and improve systems to offer more comfortable dog beds and bedding and over the past 5 months have worked on our unique Hugo & Otto 2 Tier Mattress System. We have just launched the system for our 2 new dog beds the York Sitting Pretty Cushion Dog Bed and Lincoln As Nice As Pie Cushion Dog Bed. Available in 2 sizes and 4 stunning colours our luxury dog beds has the unique 2 Tier Mattress System with their own individual water resistant protective covers. The base mattress is a polyester fibre pad that provides extra comfort, height and stability and encased in its water resistant cover. The top mattress sits on top and is deep filled with memory foam crumb and again has it’s water resistant cover. Both mattresses are encased in a water resistant outer cover that zips off easily for wash days. The top covers of both the Lincoln As Nice As Pie and the York Sitting Pretty Cushion Dog Beds are made with technical upholstery fabrics with Easyclean® stain guard resistance technology and a deceptively durable 80+K martingale rub test.
HUGO & OTTO UNIQUE 2 TIER MATTRESS SYSTEM
Our luxury Hugo & Otto dog bed design’s centre around how the bed is used for example, dog breed specific, dog size, age whether puppy or elderly they find it difficult to jump into beds. Cushion v bolster dog bed, water proof tough versus beautiful upholstery fabrics. Is it intended for travel, can we create a dog bed that can be taken apart separately for travel so that the dog will feel safe and comfortable on the road. Will the owners want the dog beds to fit into a crate at night. Can it be washed regularly with heavy use and not wear out quickly? The perfect balance of durability and soft comfortable materials is always at the top of what we look for, durability and wash care is especially at the heart of what we design.
For the retailer looking to stock a full range of dog beds that cover dog breed specific, technical, orthopaedic and age specific ranges it is quite a minefield knowing what to select. It is important to get to know the brands and ensure that you both share the same business ethics as yours, talk to your suppliers about their inspirations and the ethos behind them, what they stand for, what materials they use and where products are made and are they true to their claims. Many UK and European brands will claim that their products are British or European product when in fact more than 70% of their products are mass produced in Asia to drive up margins and to keep up with demand. The huge influx of cheap mass import dog beds from Asia continues to flow into Europe and England with Amazon, Google and the major food retail chains supplying demand for single use throw away dog beds. Maintaining growth against any of this demand is incredibly difficult for a small luxury brand supplier to maintain quality of design and manufacture against low margins and meet the consumer demands. As a British manufacturer we understand this and are often asked to produce a cheaper range. We are constantly seeking cheaper technical fabrics to meet this demand and look to how we can drive our British makers charges down but it is impossible, unless we pay them less which is not on our radar. We believe in driving change and B Corporation ideals, each and every person is paid the same within our organisation, we understand sustainability our supply chain and we are a driving force for a change for good. And so rather than compete with the cheaper products we add our value in seeking the best in quality, design and British manufacture and through our education process with our retailers look to drive change through outstanding customer service and the quality of our luxury dog products.
LINCOLN AS NICE AS PIE CUSHION DOG BED - with our innovative & unique 2 Tier double mattress system
For the consumer age plays a determining factor when it comes to bed choices, owners of puppies tend to seek out beds that are cute, easy to wash and inexpensive, knowing their pet will quickly outgrow it. Adult dogs are a different story, as the bed’s quality and features become more important than price, especially since adult dogs will spend at least half the day in the bed and certainly we look for technology to mirror the same as human beds to optimise quality and comfort.
Because pet owners want their pets with them wherever they go, beds are popping up all over the house, in nearly every room and even in outdoor living spaces, she adds. Consequently, beds matching or complementing home décor are increasingly sought out, making design and details very important.
Demand is strong and growing, driven not only by more educated consumers but also by home retailers entering the pet channel and providing more compelling options. The high-end market represents a particularly excellent opportunity, these consumers are especially interested in bed technology and health benefits. Environmental concerns also exert an influence.
Owners are more demanding and conscientious today and want to choose sustainable beds both in material and quality so it will last longer. Also, when dogs begin to age and they experience the effects of ageing, special features such as memory foam are even more valued.
Research shows that pet furniture sales in the UK are approximately £22 million annually, with growth estimates prior to COVID19 to be 5 percent in 2020. Bedding isn’t like food that can be easily purchased online, customers usually go into stores to get a feel for the material and quality and like to get the chance to touch and feel the fabrics. Thanks to the humanisation of pets, they’re doing the same for their dogs, offering some significant advantages for retailers.
Pet beds drive up the average overall purchase amount and adds profit per unit. Consumers often purchase several beds, especially when they discover a brand or bed their dog loves. Pet beds on the market today offer many technical features that require explaining. Pet specialty retailers who invest in the education of their staff with this knowledge stand to profit since many pet owners are willing to buy when they receive professional opinions and learn what kind of bed is best for their dog.
To that end, it’s important to talk with customers about how their dog sleeps in order to make the best recommendation. We suggest asking about the age, breed and size; if there are any health issues or concerns; if the dog sleeps alone or with another pet; if the dog likes to burrow or sprawl out of their backs, if the pet prefers a warm or a cool place; floor height or high up, and how active or hyper the dog is.
Despite the benefits beds offer, merchandising products that are bulky and large can prove challenging, especially for stores with limited square footage. This can make deciding to enter this category difficult. Merchandising strategies intended to help pet specialty retailers get around space constraints include:
Experimenting with bedding layouts to see what appeals most to their customers, stacking if particularly advantageous but we through experience suggest placing the largest dog bed at the bottom on a raised plinth off floor level so that the eye starts at the bottom first and also protects the bottom bed from being damaged by passing traffic and our dog friends who do love a sniff. If you can vertically display items to put these at eye-level you also save space, and hanging lighter weights on a rack system or pegs so customers can easily see and feel the different fabrics.
We always remind our retailers that buying a bed is a tactile experience, so having them off the floor and within reach is key to any successful merchandising display, The most important thing is to understand as much as they can about the customer’s needs and desires when it comes to bedding. And to pass it forward, we at Hugo & Otto care about our retailers, they are our shining knights in lovely armour trying their best to offer their clients the very best luxury dog beds on the market. We have a philosophy where we ask for regular feedback from their customers on product design and sales and help to run seasonal offers to ensure that we help them to drive up their product promotions and sales in house.
Published 9 May 2020
Written by: Caroline Bate
Hugo & Otto