|Many people worldwide are willing to spend money for the convenience of their lovable pets / Photo Credit: Shutterstock|
Pets are an important member of most households as owners consider them as their chosen companions. According to CNBC news, a media company that provides business news and real-time financial market coverage, Americans spent more than $72 billion on pets—cats and dogs alike—in 2018, with the numbers continuing to grow. Industry insiders said this amount is equivalent to how much people would splurge on the latest tech trends, or even for the cost of taking care of a small child. This modern regard for domestic animals, according to CNBC, is called the “humanization” of pets. It added that such a phenomenon has been directly caused by millennials, especially those who do not marry or delay having children and treat their pets like what they would do with a future child.
The pet industry has been growing at an unstoppable pace. According to the American Pet Products Association, almost 85 million households in the United States have a pet and have increased from 56% to 60% ownership in the last 30 years. This increase is attributed to the rise and improvement in technology (producing a host of pet accessories and gadgets that make taking care of the animals much easier and more fun), a contagious pet-loving culture, and the impact of online shopping. More than this, growth is attributed to changes in culture. Generation Z consumers embrace the pet-owning lifestyle more than the previous generations, with baby boomers only accounting for 32% of pets owned by households compared to the 62% of younger individuals, as mentioned in the article, “The Biggest Trends in the Pet Industry” featured on Forbes online. In 2019, spending behavior with regard to pets reached $75.38 billion.
|American Pet Products Association revealed an increased number of people who owned a pet in the United States / Photo Credit: Shutterstock|
Among a wide selection of products and services related to the pet industry, the top categories include food, online brands, technology, treats, services, end of life, and media. More than anything, cultural factors affect what consumers want when they own certain pets.
In 2018, the $72.56 billion spent in pets were spread across the different categories related to pet products and services. The food industry contributes $31.68 billion, according to American Pet Products. It added that consumers don’t look for traditional pet food anymore. They seek healthier alternatives, organic, for the environment, and minding the welfare of stakeholders. Consumers want fresh food for their animals, made-to-order frozen meats, with owners of pets feeding them roughly 8 to 10 treats a day.
Technology, among the other subcategories, is growing at an amazingly quick pace. Although no actual figures were presented, studies showed that technology is now being used to track lost pets, to provide real-time information, and even to come up with smart pet toys. Vet care values at $18.11 billion, with innovations in the form of DNA kits to determine genetic conditions and health problems. Other services amount to $6.11 billion, with more attention given to pet grooming, pet care, pet transportation, pet travel, pet hotels, and many more. Not only do pets have a huge selection of products and services available to them, but also services for pets that age and pass away, from crematory options, cemeteries, and grief consulting. Additionally, Amazon and Chewy.com are aiming to disrupt the market by eliminating the use of middlemen in transactions.
Another new innovation in the pet industry is Dog TV, which, obviously, is meant for dogs, shared Forbes online. This is a service that has come about because a huge number of pet owners leave their pets at home. Pet owners would leave the TV or the radio turned on in order to soothe their pets. Since human entertainment is not applicable for dogs, Dog TV seeks to create curated and patented content for pets. From the same concept came the development of Airbnb and dog-sitting services. This solution makes finding pet sitters and pet walkers more manageable, convenient, and ensures that the pets would have a great time while their owners are away.
|The growth of the pet industry expected to increase in the coming years / Photo Credit: Shutterstock|
It’s All Business
There’s no time like today to be a dog, a cat, a hamster, a rabbit, or any four-legged and furry friend. According to Bold Business, an online source for global media and technology, the pet industry has been experiencing yearly increases since the height of the financial crisis from 2007, 2008, and 2009, with $41.2 billion, $43.2 billion, and $45.3 billion revenues, respectively. Growth is still expected to continue, as around 70% of American households own a pet. Trends and market requirements would spur innovation and new products, uncover additional needs, and even higher costs. As more companies join the pet industry, tech companies will not be far behind, and they are seen to play a significant role in the growth of this sector.
When more and more realize the significance and importance of pets to human health, happiness, and even in the money=-making business, the industry should expect more pleasant surprises.