Pet-human bonds boost growth in pet food industry

pet_food industryThe human/animal bond phenomenon continues to be a key catalyst for growth in the pet food industry, according to market research firm Packaged Facts in the report Pet Food in the U.S., 12th Edition.

Not surprisingly, the majority of today’s pet owners characterize their pets as family members, and those who do so tend to be willing to spend more money on their pets, both to ensure their health and wellbeing and to pamper them. In Packaged Facts’ National Pet Owner Survey, 79% of dog owners and 77% of cat owners consider their dogs or cats to be part of the family. This is true especially when it comes to older pets.

“Older pets have profound effects on the pet industry,” says David Sprinkle, research director, Packaged Facts. “As pets age, the human/animal bond only deepens, often creating an increased willingness among pet owners to do whatever it takes to keep their pets healthy and happy for as long as possible. Older pet populations drive human-style advancements in pet food, veterinary care, medications, and supplements supported by newer payment options such as pet insurance. These trends promise not just longer and healthier lives for pets, but also a rosy outlook for pet health products and services overall.”

Interestingly, most pet parents also believe pet ownership to be mutually beneficial for animal and human alike. For instance, Packaged Facts found that most pet owners believe that pets help their health. Survey data shows that 85% of dog owners and 82% of cat owners agree that their pets have a positive impact on their mental health. Similarly, 80% of dog owners and 74% of cat owners agree that their pets have a positive impact on their physical health.

With such benefits to owners, it’s not surprising that their furry family members are rewarded.  Packaged Facts found that 77% of dog owners and 68% of cat owners enjoy purchasing pet products that pamper their dogs/cats.  Some 43% of pet owners would even rather spend money on pet toys and other products for their pets over purchasing things for themselves.

Pet Food in the U.S., 12th Edition pinpoints strategic directions for current and prospective marketers, with a forward-looking focus on high-growth product segments and market drivers. Covering products for all type of companion animals, the report devotes separate chapters to Dog Food, Cat Food, and Other Pet Food (birds, small animal, fish, and reptiles), while also providing a comprehensive Market Overview covering cross-market trends and opportunities. Among these: recent and expected mergers and acquisitions; private-label pet food; advertising and promotional initiatives; the impact of natural products on the industry; specialty diet products; and much more. – PRNewswire

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