This 13-year-old has designed a unique hydrating water bottle for pets
As a pet parent, Dia Sheth faced a unique problem while taking her puppy out for walks, to the garden, or on long drives.
“He used to get extremely thirsty and so I couldn’t take him anywhere far or play outdoors with him for a long duration. Thus, the idea of Slurrp-y, the pet hydrating water bottle, was born in 2019,” Dia tells HerStory.
A 13-year-old student of DY Patil International School, Mumbai, Dia also attends the Young Entrepreneurship Academy (YEA!) that mentors and hand-holds students to capitalise on their unique ideas and become young entrepreneurs.
Water for pets
Explaining the concept, Dia says, “Slurrp-y is a unique pet hydrator bottle for cats and dogs, which has storage for food as well as water - so you can carry all of it on the go! It is leak proof, made with food grade material, and has a carbon filter to remove any odour and impurities. It makes it way easier for you to travel with your pet.”
Her biggest challenge, however, was to find a manufacturer. She went from place to place in Mumbai but could not find anyone due to the complex structure of the bottle. After a long search and lots of research, she found a factory in Bhiwandi that was ready to make the mould dye for her. Her biggest goal now is to patent her design.
“There is competition for everything in the market and Slurrp-y has some unique features, which makes it different from the others available in the market. Customers have loved the wide mouth cup feature which makes it easy for pets to drink out of and the leak proof system with a lock,” she adds.
Dia started off her marketing efforts via word-of-mouth with her dog’s trainer Malika Kamodia who loved the idea and offered to help and distribute her product pamphlets to NGOs, her clients, and various other people and communities.
When she took her dog for his grooming session at Curly Tails, the owner Jennifer Tabadia fell in love with Slurrp-y and wanted to keep her product pamphlets at her place too. Dia also approached her dog’s vet, Dr Deep, at the Pet Zone clinic and they too offered to keep the product at their store.
However, her biggest moment of pride came when she came across Rosina, the editor of the Dogs and More magazine, who was absolutely stunned with her product and offered to feature her and her product in the magazine.
Slurrp-y is priced at Rs 849 while Slurrp-y plus sells for Rs 899.
“The class on ‘ Unit Economics’ at YEA helped me understand the costs involved in any business, the difference between fixed and variable costing, and how to arrive at the pricing so that I would have a marginal profit. I factored in manufacturing, packaging, and marketing costs and came up with the price. We have sold about 200 bottles so far,” says Dia.
Looking for new avenues
As of now Slurrp-y is available at pet stores ‘Heads up for Tails’ and ‘Shake Hands’. Dia also exhibited her products at the YEA! trade show and ‘The Dogs and More’ pet exhibition. The feedback at these platforms has helped her tremendously. She is currently in talks with Petsy – an online exclusive website for dogs.
She is also constantly looking at new and creative avenues for marketing and selling her product.
“On my visit to Jaipur, I had gifted the bottle to my aunt for her dogs, and one of her friends saw it and instantly ordered a whole bunch as return gifts for a birthday party. This gave me an idea to connect with event managers to explore this sales avenue as events slowly limp back to normalcy post the pandemic,” she says.
Dia’s dream is to start her own website and to retail via stores not only all over India but worldwide.
“Nothing makes a pet lover happier than to see their pet enjoy and be joyful. I hope Slurrp-y makes their lives easier,” she adds.