July 20, 2006

water dog

i don't much care for bottled water - if i need water on the go, i simply fill a water bottle with tap water, and that's it. but then, i'm not a water connoisseur*.

i am not surprised at all, though, that the bottled water craze has spawned a new product: aqua dog.
An Australian man has taken pooch-pampering to the next level with the launch of Aqua Dog. With one canine for every five Australians, the country has one of the world's highest dog ownership rates and a pet food industry worth Aus$1,2-billion ($890-million) a year.

For Andrew Larkey, that made the country the perfect place to start offering bottled water for dogs. "Most people think 'how ridiculous'. The irony is that this is 100% serious," said Larkey. "It's like a sports drink for dogs."

Larkey came up with the idea while working as the new products manager for an international beverage company. On his trips to the supermarket two things, he said, became clear. The fastest growing markets were bottled water for humans and high-value pet treats. Larkey simply wanted to marry the two together.

"Bottled water for dogs ... I just had to follow through with it," Larkey said. When the multinational didn't believe in the idea, Larkey left his secure corporate job and went in alone. Selling for nearly Aus$3 ($2,20) per bottle, the canine drink is more expensive than mineral water for humans. But in a nation of dog lovers, it is flying off the shelves.
although i just love to be distracted by brandy walking up to her water bowl -- the clack, clack, clack of her nails on the hardwood floor followed by the bored slurp, slurp, slurp of her exploration of the bowl ("see, this is all i'm getting here, boring old water") -- i'm not going to try to increase the frequency of her water bowl trips by making her think that some meat may be at the bottom of the bowl.

connoisseur goes back to the latin verb "cognoscere", which means "to know" or "to be acquainted with". it found its way into english via old french ("connoisseor"). in modern french the spelling is different (connaisseur) .

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