I didn't realize I ordered a pre-order product. What does that mean?
"Pre-Order" means that a product is not commercially available yet. When you place a pre-order, you are ordering an item before it is in stock with the understanding that it will ship as soon as it becomes available. We use the term "Pre-Order" to differentiate from items that are in stock.
Why haven't I received a shipping update?
You will receive a shipping update when your order ships. :) We are working around the clock to oversee the manufacturing and shipping process in order to ship all pre-orders as quickly as possible.
The following information is stated on the Water Hole and Water Hole Set Pre Order product pages that we cannot guarantee a shipping date due to COVID-19 and orders will be fulfilled on a first-come, first serve basis when supplies arrive.
Why is there no estimated shipping date? Please give me your best guess!
The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted our business, creating operational challenges in uncharted waters. The pandemic has peaked in some markets and returned to others.
As a small company, we rely on multiple supply chain partners to help us manufacture new products.
Due to COVID-19, the manufacturing work environment (production and assembly lines and other busy areas where workers have close contact with each other) is more susceptible to potential COVID-19 exposure. This means any COVID-19 cases may cause the manufacturing facility to shut down for an indefinite amount of time. Any delays impact our entire timeline because we have to wait until production is rescheduled and reschedule the QA / testing process and shipping.
There is nothing we can do to stop or predict COVID-19 delays which is why we are unable to guarantee a shipping date. We don't want to make any promises we can't keep and choose to not sacrifice quality to make up for COVID-19 delays. We ask that if you are uncomfortable with not knowing an estimated shipping date, we can cancel your pre-order and notify you via email as soon as we have excess inventory in stock. We completely understand your frustration with the delays - it makes us really unhappy too because our job is to make you happy!
Why does it take so long to make the Water Hole?
The Fluff Trough Water Hole is a uniquely shaped product. If we were making a round dog bowl like the other companies, this process would go much faster because there are already molds. Since the product is so unique and only compatible with the Fluff Trough, we had to manufacture a lot of specialized tooling to produce the product.
We use three pieces of tooling to manufacture the product. The first piece of tooling is a big stamp which stamps the sheet of stainless steel into the Water Hole shape. After the product is stamped, we use a precision laser cutting process to smooth the edges and then polish each unit to ensure it is smooth - a smooth surface is less likely to corrode and retain bacteria.
This shows the product before the edges have been laser cut and the unit polished. This is not an assembly line product and we are dealing with COVID-19 delays.
I got my pre-order in early. Did you miss my order?
We had people all over the world waiting over a year to pre-order the Water Hole. When we started pre-orders, we had an overwhelming number of orders come in the first 60 seconds due to the global demand. We have started fulfilling pre-orders, but have not been able to fulfill all orders because there is more demand than stock right now.
If you haven't received your pre-order yet, we have your order in queue and will ship it as soon as we can. We would love to make you happy by shipping your order now, but we are not going to sacrifice quality or cut corners to make up for COVID-19 delays. Our goal is to make high-quality products for our customers.
Why do you take pre-orders?
We are a small company and value our customers' feedback - using it to make new products that people are asking for. The Fluff Trough Water Hole is a very unique product with a unique function to help animals drink water better. We've had many people ask to pre-order the product so they don't have to worry about watching for it to become available on the website.
When we have released new products without doing the pre-order process, they've sold out in less than a couple of minutes and people are disappointed because they were at work or unable to order as soon as we put the inventory in stock. We offer the opportunity to pre-order so you can get your order in and know you will receive it as soon as the product is available instead of waiting for updates of the product to be in stock and potentially missing out on being able to order.
We are a small company and trying to manufacture as quickly as we can, but we do have limitations due to COVID-19 and the suppliers we work with. We expected to be able to start shipping pre-orders earlier, but have experienced multiple COVID-19 delays.
Is there any good news?
Yes! The Fluff Trough Water Hole is a very special product designed to help improve your pet's quality of life! The people who have already received their Water Hole product have consistently shared it is worth the wait and their pets love it!
Please know we sincerely appreciate your patience and faith in the product and our company. It is painful for us that we can't make as many Water Holes as fast as we want to. We love to see our customers happy and hate to disappoint you with delays, but we are 100% transparent about not being able to guarantee a shipping date so you can make a decision that you are comfortable with. We 100% respect your decision and don't expect you to pre-order a product if you are not comfortable with waiting.