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Retail stores want to cash in on growing chew toy sales

Pet toy sales are showing some bite.

Those chew toys for Fido and related goods have become the hottest sector in the toy business — posting annual growth rates in the mid-single digits while sales of children’s toys are shrinking, industry statistics show.

In 2017, pet toy sales are expected to exceed $1 billion for the first time.

The fast-paced growth has convinced some nontraditional toy sellers, like Home Depot, T.J.Maxx and even Tractor Supply Co., to start stocking pet toys in recent years.

“Toys have held steady at about $21 billion on average for the past decade, but the pet industry is growing like crazy,” said Jim Silver, president of TTPM, a toy-review Web site, which began reviewing pet products a couple of years ago, because pet parents wanted to know they are buying safe and quality made doodads for their pets.

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