Pet Rock

Pet Rock Pet Rocks were a 1970's fad conceived in Los Gatos, California, by an advertising executive, Gary Dahl. The first Pet Rocks were ordinary gray pebbles bought at a builder's supply store and marketed as if they were live pets. The fad lasted only about six months, ending with the Christmas season in December 1975; but in its short run, the Pet Rock made Dahl a millionaire.

In 1975, Dahl established 'Rock Bottom Productions,' a company that sold the rocks for $3.95 each. The pebbles, imported from Rosarito Beach in Baja, California, were swaddled in excelsior and nestled in a small cardboard box, similar to a pet carrier. A Pet Rock Training Manual, with instructions on how to properly raise and care for one's newfound pet (notably lacking instructions for feeding), was included. The instruction manual contained several commands that could be taught to the new pet. While 'sit' and 'stay' were pretty easy, 'roll over' usually required extra help from the trainer. 'Come' was found to be impossible to teach reliably.