Consumers continue to pamper their pets

Consumers may have tightened their belts in the current economy, but they aren’t skimping when it comes to their pets. The American Pet Products Association’s annual review of spending data revealed that overall spending in the pet category grew more than 6% to more than $48 billion in 2010.

More Americans own pets than ever before. The APPA said that the number of U.S. households that own a pet has increased by 2.1% to an all-time high of 72.9 million. And those pet owners are pampering their pets. Dog owners spend the most on their pets — an average of $364 a year. In 2010, there was a 30% gain in dollars spent on dog gifts, according to the APPA.

The APPA projected overall pet spending will increase 5% to exceed $50 billion in the coming year.

Pet owners are hungry for the “next big thing,” according to Bob Vetere, president of APPA. Pet foods offering more complete and balanced diets have grabbed a bigger share of the pet food market. Pet owners also are purchasing more pet health and beauty care products, including mouthwash and electric toothbrushes for dogs.

The APPA predicted strong growth for programmable feeding and drinking systems, automatic and battery-operated toys, self-cleaning litter boxes and self-warming pet mats.

 

 

The article above is part of the DSN Category Review Series. For the complete Pet Care Mid-Year Report, including extensive charts, data and more analysis, click here.