About Our Company
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How it all began…………..
In the late 1990’s Betsy Lipscomb, a cat behaviorist, cat lover and founder of SmartCat® understood that people surrendered their cats to shelters because they didn’t know how to change unwanted behaviors. Cat owners were unhappy with cats using furniture and carpets to do what came natural to them –scratching. Most thought de-clawing was the only answer, it is not! For Betsy, this was a call to action. She started Cats International, a free hotline to help people solve their cat behavior issues. For years Betsy fielded thousands of calls from desperate cat owners looking for solutions. Still on her mission today you can visit www.catsinternational.org to learn about humane solutions for cat behavioral problems.
Early on Betsy began gathering wooden fence posts from her farm in Wisconsin. She wrapped them in sisal rope and mounted them on sturdy wood bases. Her sole purpose of making these posts was to send them to pet parents who needed help with scratching behaviors. People were amazed to learn that the scratching post solved their problems. These posts became vastly popular and soon Betsy was making up to 50 a month by hand.
Betsy decided that she wanted to start a company whose sole mission was to enhance our pets’ quality of life, by providing for their behavioral needs. She especially wanted to detour pet parents from declawing their cats, as it is a cruel procedure. With a lot of persuasion she finally convinced her husband, John, to manufacture a larger version of her homemade scratching post. The result was our flagship product, the Ultimate Scratching Post. Thus SmartCat® began.
From there the rest is history. In 2009 our company branched out to become Pioneer Pet Products®. We did so to extend our quality designs and construction into a wider range of products. In 2012 we acquired the brand Sticky Paws®. Sticky Paws® is a tactile tape that detours cats from scratching unwanted surfaces, and keeping them out of harmful house plants. Sticky Paws® fits right into the Pioneer Pet® brand. It helps cat owners to tame behaviors in the home without taking away their natural instincts.
We are no longer a farmhouse operation, but a mission and dream come true. Our trio of brands is one that pet parents have come to love and trust. The mission however, has never changed – to provide superior products that will improve the quality of life for pets and their owners. All of our products are designed by behavior experts, as well as being widely tested and approved before reaching the market.
We are proud to be associated with Cats International. Knowing that behavioral problems are the number one killer of pets in this country, Betsy started a free behavior counseling service that is known as Cats International. The site is a reliable resource for intelligent and practical solutions in solving and preventing difficult behavior and training problems.