The Pet Retail Market Is Hot And Getting Hotter By The Day

Everybody seems to “Walkin’ the Dog,” to borrow the line from the rhythm-and-blues classic. There are now more pet-owning households then there are those with children, some 84.6 million strong as compared with 52.8 million with kids, or 41.4% according to Statista.

Today nearly 70% of all U.S. households own a pet, with dogs by far the most popular pet, according to the American Pet Products Association. Some 60.2 million households own dogs, compared with 47.1 million that own cats. (Note: households that own both dogs and cats are counted in both groups.)

And for those pet-owning households, pets have really become full-fledged members of the family. According to another APPA survey, 90% of the 1,200 pet owners surveyed said, “Pets are family.” Admittedly that was a self-selected group to survey, but you get the idea.

People who own pets take their responsibilities as pet parents very seriously. That adds up to quite a lot of money, some $72.1 billion in the U.S. this year, up 8.1% from 2016. Pet food gets the lion’s share of this spending, or about 42% of the total.

But increasingly everything that people need for themselves, they also need for their pets, so they are willing to splurge on luxuries like beds, toys, clothing, travel accessories, gifts and grooming services, along with the necessities including collars, leashes, bowls, medicine and veterinary services.


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