New DTC toolkit   //   July 6, 2023

Snoop Dogg’s pet care line is entering Petco, PetSmart and Kohl’s

Aside from his rap career, Snoop Dogg has become somewhat of a serial entrepreneur in recent years. His brands include Indoggo gin, cannabis brand Leafs By Snoop, Snoop Cereal in collaboration with Post and a wine line launched in 2020 in partnership with winemaker 19 Crimes. Next up, Snoop Dogg wants to dominate the ever-expanding pet category with his latest venture, Snoop Doggie Doggs.

After launching on its own website and on Amazon in late 2022, the brand is entering retailers like Petco, PetSmart and Kohl’s this month. The line currently consists of dog clothing, toys and accessories like harnesses, hats and food bowls. The pet line is already at local pet chains like Healthy Spot and Pet Supplies Plus, and also sells to independent shops through Faire and Wholesale Pet. While the pet category continues to grow, there are headwinds that new pet brands are facing — such as reduced spending on non-discretionary items. But according to the company, a celebrity founder and flashy designs are helping differentiate its pieces amid a crowded field.

Snoop Doggie Doggs is certainly built upon the appeal of Snoop Dogg himself, said April Guidone, COO of SMAC Entertainment, the talent agency that helped launch the brand in partnership with manufacturer Little Earth Productions. As a long-time pet parent, Snoop Dogg currently takes care of 11 dogs and two cats. 

“The line is for fans of Snoop’s and his style, and he crosses generations with his audience,” Guidone said. It includes various collections such as the blinged out “Off The Chain,” the pink “Boss Lady” and “Throw a Dogg a Bone.”

“Everything is just a little bit extra, so we think it will be different from what’s out there,” said Ava DeMarco, co-founder and CEO of Little Earth Productions, which helped create and produce the line. For example, the pet bowl is gold and heavy, and features chains and the sports jerseys feature crystals. “The pieces are well-made, but also really fun for people to put on their pets and post photos of them,” she said.

DeMarco added the launch on Amazon was to make “an exclusive initial splash.” She said that the products have “had a great response” over the past six months. While the company didn’t share exact sales numbers, this month Snoop Doggie Doggs saw a 450% online sales growth compared to the launch phase throughout last November and December. 

DeMarco said the brand’s ability to secure multiple retail launches simultaneously was helped by Little Earth’s existing relationships with retailers. The company works with major chains to supply licensed sports merchandise in partnership with leagues like the NFL, NHL and MLB. “They know our track record with these other brands,” DeMarco said. 

Snoop Dogg himself is a major marketing play, particularly on social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok, where he collectively has over 100 million followers. Some of the retailers will feature in-store promotions and displays for the line’s launch. In-person events to drum up buzz are also a big piece of the marketing. Most recently, Snoop Dogg’s wife and entrepreneur Shante Broadus appeared at a Pet Health event with the couple’s dogs. “Snoop also has a lot of celebrity friends who have pets, so we’re doing a lot of influencer gifting,” Guidone said. 

DeMarco said the brand has a two-tier merchandising strategy, geared toward both in-store and online shoppers. For example, she said, the brick-and-mortar SKUs lean more toward impulse purchases. Snoop Doggie Doggs clothing fits up to a “big dog” size, with prices ranging from $14.99 to $99.99. “Online is where you’ll see more high-end items, like the gold bowl that retails for $75,” she explained. Little Earth also created some exclusive pieces for select retailers, such as a dog bandana only sold at Kohl’s.

At this time, pet brands that don’t sell food have to work harder to stand out. Brad Jashinsky, director analyst at research firm Gartner’s marketing practice, said that despite some softening, pet products continue to grow – particularly in essentials like food and health services.

Jashinsky noted that both Petco and Chewy saw net sale increases year-over-year during the first quarter of this year. However, pet parents have pulled back on non-consumables, like clothing and accessories while continuing to purchase the food brands their pets have become accustomed to.

He added that while this category is facing inflation-related challenges, there are some bright spots such as the growing trend of pet Halloween costumes. “This is why retailers are looking to continuously refresh their non-discretionary aisles to encourage impulse purchase,” Jashinsky said. “That’s where collaborations like Petsmart’s ‘Stranger Things’ line or a celebrity-driven brand like Snoop Dogg’s can have an edge.”

DeMarco said Snoop Doggie Doggs is being positioned as a giftable, novelty brand — which she said will help differentiate it, especially during the end of the year holiday season. “We’ll have a lot of new items that get pet parents excited in the coming months,” she said.