Pioneer Pet

Family Owned and Operated since the late 1990’s

Betsy Lipscomb and her husband John began gathering wooden fence posts from their farm in Wisconsin and wrapping them in sisal rope and mounted them on sturdy wood bases as a way to provide a solution 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. This is when she 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. 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 and in 2009 their company branched out to become Pioneer Pet Products to extend their quality designs and construction into a wider range of products. To this day, John, Betsy and many other members of their family are continuing this mission each day.

Partner Stats

  • Last Date Visited : August 2019
  • Company Location : Cedarburg, WI


front of Palouse Kitty litter bag

Partners with Mud Bay to Create Palouse Kitty, Our GMO-Free Wheat Litter

Mud Bay asked Pioneer Pet to create our first branded cat litter. While we typically prioritize working with manufacturers based in the Pacific Northwest, Pioneer Pets expertise in litter manufacturing made this company our first choice for a Mud Bay brands partner. After looking at some possible sample litters with different ingredients, we chose wheat as the base ingredient. Once some Muddies tested the Palouse Kitty prototype for a month with their own cats, we made some adjustments to improve the product even more before offering it to our customers. Pioneer Pet’s superior command of the manufacturing process and their excellent facility ensured that Mud Bay would be able to offer the best GMO-free wheat litter we could at a highly attractive price.

Patents and innovation galore!

When walking the halls of Pioneer Pets offices in Cedarburg Wisconsin, you’ll see hundreds of patents framed and lining the halls. This is a testament to their mission of innovating and continuing to make products that are real solutions to some of the most common problems facing pet parents. From a fountain that resembles a sink faucet to one of the bestselling scratch posts, they are not afraid to experiment and imagine some truly wonderful products. They then design, test and have their products approved by behavior experts.

Partners with Cats International

Pioneer Pet has a wonderful partnership with Cats International through Betsy, the mind behind the Ultimate Scratch Post. Cats International is a free behavior counseling service to help cat owners unlock the mysteries behind their cat’s behavior and provide information and resources to help curb them and improve our relationship with our cats!

Members of Pioneer Pet receiving an award

Grass as a Litter Base?

Just a few short years ago the folks at Smart Cat started to recognize that there was something missing from other natural litters on the market and began searching for a litter base that would help to solve some of the common complaints from cat owners while maintaining a lightweight status. Their search eventually led them to grass as an exceptional litter base. Once they found the process they wanted to use to make the litter, they even tested it using Bureau Veritas against clay to find that this litter would out clump clay, provide 99% dust-free exceptional odor control and they could do so without any additives. The grass is sourced from farms in the Midwest and they look to have the farms be nearby to reduce their carbon footprint on sourcing this litter and only use non-GMO grass!