The American Pet Products Association (APPA) has released new annual industry-wide spending figures, which exceeded the previous year's spending by more than $3 billion. Americans are showing love for their pets as never before.
APPA's annual industry figures cover pet spending in the market categories of food, supplies/over-the-counter (OTC) medications, veterinary care, live animal purchases and other services.
"Millennials continue to be the largest pet-owning demographic and this shows in the data," said Bob Vetere, President and CEO of APPA. "We know this generation is willing to pay more for quality products and services to improve the health and well-being of their pets. Today more than ever, pet owners view their pets as irreplaceable members of their families and lives, and it's thanks to this that we continue to see such incredible growth within the pet care community."
Spending on pet food continues to make up the majority of dollars spent in the industry, with premium dog food accounting for the most frequent type of food purchased, followed by generic and natural food.
Rather than a higher volume of food being sold, the ongoing growth in this category likely stems from rising prices and sales of higher-priced foods made with quality ingredients. An interest in natural, locally-sourced treats and chews has never been higher across U.S. pet owners.
"In the coming year, we anticipate steady growth in the pet food category thanks to opportunities that reside in specialized diets, targeting the aging pet population and pets with unique dietary needs," said Vetere. "The availability of fresh food options and subscription delivery programs is also expected to increase spending in this category."
Veterinary care remains the second highest source of spending in the pet care community, surpassing growth in any other category at a rate of 6.1 percent.
The frequency of vet visits has likely increased as well thanks to lower prices, making care more accessible to a broader audience. As a result, the trend of pet insurance is projected to increase with pets living longer and requiring more complex and extended medical care.
Following veterinary care, spending on supplies and OTC medications holds the spot for the third highest source of pet spending.
Find out more at www.americanpetproducts.org.