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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (January 13, 2015) – A team of eleven international researchers have utilized an innovative approach to gain in-depth insights about the roles dogs play across cultures.

Think Global Qualitative, a global team of expert qualitative researchers, conducted a nine-country study utilizing mobile-enabled technology to explore the roles dogs plays in the lives of their owners. This collaborative effort was designed to help provide PetSafe® brand, an industry leader in the development of innovative pet behavioral, containment and lifestyle product solutions and services, with high-level, global insights, as well as identify new product development, innovation and growth opportunities.

“We’ve been impressed with both the depth of information and how immediately actionable it is for us,” noted Jason Hart, Director, PetSafe® brand. “We’ve worked with Rebecca for nearly 20 years, but she with the rest of the Think Global team really raised our expectations regarding what the right qualitative researchers can accomplish with mobile technology.

“Mobile devices proved to be an invaluable tool in this study,” Rebecca Bryant, one of the 11 researchers of the Think Global Interactive team, said. “The industry often thinks of mobile as being good for on-the-go snippets, but not as a go-to tool for gathering in-depth insights. The incorporation of mobile devices in this study enabled us to get unprecedented access into pet owners’ daily lives and our research design yielded extraordinary emotional and lifestyle insights.”

Dog owners from the U.S., Canada, Czech Republic, France, Germany, India, Mexico, South Africa, and the U.K. participated in the four-week study at different times during 2014. During the first week, participants were asked to use their mobile phones to record their day-to-day lives with their dog, including photos, videos, audio files, and text messages, in an online diary. In the U.S., the daily diary exercise also included a Question of the Day to encourage participants to delve even deeper into their daily lives with their dogs. These questions focused on topics such as the best aspects of having a dog, a dog’s favorite things, thoughts/attitudes towards training a dog, and products or services pet owners want but can’t find.

Following the 5-day online diaries, dog owners in each country participated in online group discussions. Here participants had the opportunity to connect with other dog owners in their country and share their experiences with each other. This discussion also provided a forum for the dog owners to explore new ideas for products and services. In the U.S., participants expressed the desire for products and services in the following four areas:

  • Communication: Participants want better two-way communication between them and their dogs.
  • Containment: Owners are interested in better ways to contain or track their dog, such as a GPS dog collar or a positive reinforcement tool like an automated treat dispenser.
  • Caretaking: Products that have the ability to track the dog’s health history/status, increase exercise and improve grooming are all important to participants.
  • Companionship Plus: Apps or products that allow owners to interact remotely and/or use a smartphone to create a game for them and their dog to play together also topped the list.

Bryant explains how the study results benefit PetSafe in more ways than one.

“While the qualitative research revealed a number of opportunities for product and service innovation, a number of the participant-generated ideas are already being manufactured by PetSafe, identifying a need for increased marketing and awareness in those segments,” Bryant said.

Another main takeaway from the study was that as owners in many countries continue to view their dogs more and more like family members, pet product trends continue to mirror human product trends, such as fashion, health and technology.

To learn more about the study, Global Unleashed: Dogs Go Mobile and Connect Online, and to review country-specific findings please visit

About Think Global Qualitative
Think Global Qualitative is a global alliance of boutique qualitative marketing research firms. With associates throughout North America and Europe, as well as offices in India and Africa, and affiliates in many more areas, Think Global provides global coverage to all major markets. To find out more about the organization, please visit our website at or our LinkedIn page at

About PetSafe® brand
Headquartered in Knoxville, Tenn., PetSafe® brand is an industry brand leader in the development of innovative pet behavioral, containment and lifestyle product solutions and services. For more information, please visit or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

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Media Contacts:
Meredith Schneider
Fetching Communications
(919) 229-8001

Rebecca Bryant
Bryant Research
(865) 207-3276

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