Delivering Pets’ Essential Needs Through Pet Hydration | Waggin Water

Animal Innovations Show - Episode 127 - Waggin Water

Delivering Pets’ Essential Needs Through Pet Hydration | Waggin Water

Water keeps our animals alive, but why not give them the additional nutrients they need for pet hydration?

Luckily, Waggin Water is here to help.

Founded by Drew Whited, Waggin Water aims to contribute to animals’ hydration, health, and wellness—one sip at a time.

According to Drew,

“Waggin Water is a brand dedicated to hydration for pets. Our mission is to deliver pets their most essential needs through water.”

Bringing Waggin Water to Life

Having been an entrepreneur for most of his adult life, Drew always knew since he was a kid that he wanted to do his own thing.

This drive led him to establish three different brands in the beverage space for humans in the last 10 years.

However, it was during his travels with his dog, Mickey, that he realized the need for water specifically for pets.

“I’d always be in different towns and different cities and hotels and just traveling a lot. And I’d always bring my dog with me. But countless times, I’d forget my collapsible bowl.”

Collapsible bowls are usually what pet parents bring to pour water and give their Fidos. But because of his experiences, Drew wanted to find a solution for him and his dog.

“I just had this immediate thought, like, why is there not something easier? Dogs drink water more times a day than they do anything else in the world.”

bringing waggin water to life

Armed with a new vision, Drew started taking steps to bring it to life.

“Fast forward, it’s both a blessing and a curse, right? This guy brought me in, but I’m starting a new category. There’s no demand for it because no one knows it exists… I’m basically going in there completely blind.”

But with grit and full belief in his vision, Drew learned to figure out what he needed to learn to turn his dream into a success.

“So I’ve learned a lot about my market for this current product, but then also our evolution into what we’re doing more of now… I got my first win at the same time, too, when Shark Tank hit me up. So, it all happened pretty quickly… It was kind of like a whole storm this year of just trying to handle that whole massive kind of opportunity.”

 

 

Learn more about Waggin Water!

Visit their website at https://wagginwater.com/.

Have suggestions for who we should interview next?

Send us a message at [email protected]!

Drew: My name is Drew Whited and I’m the CEO and founder of Waggin Water.

And you are tuned in to The Animal Innovations Show.

Chris: Tell us who you are and how you’re innovating and helping animals.

Drew: So, I’ve had three other brands in the beverage space for humans, and that’s been my last ten years of being an entrepreneur.

Has basically been between those three brands, each of them, I’ve kind of had a better step of a bigger platform and better product, I guess you would say.

And then I just own a little dog that I always travel with. His name is Mickey. He’s a little 6lb Chihuahua and I’ve had him for 5years, and I essentially started it because of a problem I had with Mickey just experiencing on-the-go.

And that was my original product. And then now we’ve kind of evolved.

So, yeah, basically I’m a 38-year-old single guy. I’m always on the go with my dog. 

With my other three beverages, I’d always be in different towns and different cities and hotels and just traveling a lot.

And with my dog, I’d always bring him with me. And countless times I was forgetting my collapsible bowl, which was just usually what people bring to pour water and to give their dog on the go.

And I’d always forget that. So, I’d be like kind of on the go trying to find solutions. So, I’d be going into random gas stations or somewhere and buying a bottle of water and trying to pour it into something in my hand or something randomly.

One time, I was even running late for an Uber in New York to a flight and I couldn’t miss it. And so I couldn’t have time to pull off and get my dog water.

And he’s sitting there panting for 20 minutes and he’s a small dog. I asked the Uber driver if I could buy his water off him for like $10.

I gave him like $10 and I’m sitting there pouring the water into a cap to give to my dog, out of a cap. I’m sitting in there like: How is there not like a bottled water for pets, but like an easy way that you can just pour it open and give them water?

That way if I’m running late, I can just throw it in my bag. I don’t have to worry about having my bowl and trying to find something to pour in my bowl.

So, I just had this immediate thought, like, why is there not something easier? Dogs drink water more times a day than they do anything else in the world.

There are so many different pet products. Like, how is it not something like water simply for them?

Chris: What year is this when this all blew up?

Drew: January 2021 is when I got into Target stores. So, about a year and four months ago from right now, yeah.

I mean, I didn’t know what to expect going in there for the opportunity. There’s just so many factors going on. People do think it’s a great idea because it’s bottled water, but for dogs, right.

My initial one was that’s essentially what it is. Now, I sell the collapsible bowl, we do way more now. Initially, if you put this on any—

 I have a vending machine going up in the Chicago dog beach with all Waggin Waters in there. It’s the right product, the right time kind of product. My initial one was.

So, it’s a total convenience item, that if you’re on a countertop at a groomer or if you’re on a dog beach or somewhere in America where you’re on the boundary, forget your bowl or something, you can have a water with you.

That’s pretty useful in that sense.

Chris: Nice, so now you said you evolved it, though, from just one product. So, what are all the different variations you have now?

Drew: And so, my first product I introduced was a CBD water. And I just kind of found some guys that were doing CBD water for humans.

If they sell them big retailers, I’m kind of telling off what they’re doing, but just introduced a pet version of it. So, it’s completely flavorless. It has 10 milligrams of CBD in it.

And now, what I was doing is— I was giving more value to pets through the delivery system of water without them knowing it. But when dogs are stressed out, they naturally drink water versus eating.

And then my second product introduced was a dental water. It’s essentially a dental water additive that people are using and are putting in their water bowl flavorless to the dog or undetected by the dog, but giving them additional benefits in the form of dental health.

So, I have my CBD water, my dental water, and the next one we’re almost done with is the hip and joint water,  which has glucosamine in it. Similar ingredient to most of the treats in the industry.

So, our whole ethos is we’re delivering pets additional benefits through their daily water intake without them even knowing it.

Until now, until Waggin Water came along, that bowl has basically just been giving them water, right. And now, I’m looking to give them more benefits through that same bowl right next to their pet food bowl every day.

Chris: Yeah, I love the fact that you call it a water delivery system.  Because when you really stop and think about it, you are, you have the ability, as you said, to deliver pretty much anything in the form of nutrients in the water that they’re already accustomed to drinking.

Drew: Right— I mean, there are so many beverages, because— that’s one of the ways they give us stuff is through that delivery system of a beverage.

And so for dogs, they do two things. They eat and they drink.

For me, to kind of have a little bit of experience doing beverages and just be an innovator in that sense and then see this gap in this industry, I wanted to—that’s kind of like why we took this turn.

So moving forward, when you think about Waggin Water, it’s not going to be the single kind of use,  like the convenient one I came up with that’s going to kind of take a backseat.

And we’re way more concerned and have a mission of giving pets just benefits through water, their daily water.

Chris: No, I love the fact that you’ve evolved and pivoted so much since you were in Target. So, it’s not like this has been a long time.

I mean, you’re moving really fast and like you said, you’re adjusting to what people are telling you and what your beliefs are as well.

Drew: That’s just like entrepreneurship. And every painter and every entrepreneur has their own version of how they’re going to bring that and do that.

And so, yeah, I’m excited. I mean, I feel like I really connected the dots that haven’t been connected before. And I go to trade shows and even furthermore, it gets kind of like confirmed that we’re on the right path.

Chris: Yeah, so now, what’s next? What other things are you looking at delivering through the water?

Drew: So, the first goal is to get a core suite of those products that I can take and prove this point with this year.

And the Waggin Water, what’s next—It’s like we’re still navigating our current evolution. I’m right in the middle of it, actually.

You know what I mean? But that’s where we’re going more functionally-based and we still will have convenient options, but that will be more of a side point.

I’ll be able to tell you: Hey, you want your CBD? Well, we actually have a to-go version of that one too. Because that one is good for on the go, too.

Chris: Drew, I’m really excited that you finally found the right product to work on, right. So, excited that you’re helping dogs.

Is there anything else that you wanted to mention before I wrap things up?

Drew: Not much, I’m just happy to be on here with you and happy to chat with you. So, Thanks.

Chris: Yeah, I’m glad you came on.

So, why don’t you tell people where they can find it, how they can buy it? How do they get a hold of you?

Drew: You can get it on Chewy, Amazon, Target stores have it, and then we’re just now getting pretty deep into the pet industry.

Your local pet stores hopefully will have it soon. If you ask them for it, they can carry it now. And we have just a lot of new stores coming on this year.

But those are three banner accounts where most people have a Target, Chewy, or Amazon at least one place you can get it.

And then the functional line will be out soon on Chewy as well. And our website WAGGINWATER.COM

Chris: There you go. Of course, you got to have the website, right? You can always order it from the website.

Yeah. It’s amazing. You’ve come so far in such a short period of time and it all started with a little Chihuahua, right? 

So, that’s what’s so cool about your story and as I wrap things up, I would like to tell our viewers and listeners that that’s where it starts. It starts with your dog. It starts with you solving a problem just like Drew was doing.

He noticed and look at what he’s done now. He took a simple problem and then he didn’t have water for his dog and he’s turned it into a whole new product category and someday he may have his own industry.

So, if you’ve got an idea for a product that helps animals or the people that love them, we want to know about it.

Just go to INNOVATIONS.SHOW. We’d love to have you on the show and don’t forget to go to DOOBERT.COM and sign up to be a volunteer.

Be a Dooberteer. You can help transport and foster animals that need a loving home for a period of time.

So, Drew, thank you so much for coming on really excited. We’ll probably have to have you back to see what you come up with next.

Drew: Thank you, guys. I appreciate it and have a great day.

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