Why American Pet Owners Spend Billions On Their Furry Friends

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Pets have carved a special place for themselves in the United States. As of 2017, American pet owners have spent billions of dollars on their furry friends, contributing to the pet industry’s growth, according to the American Pet Products Association (APPA).

“Talk to any pet owner, and they’ll tell you how difficult it is to put a dollar limit on what they’d spend to give their loyal companion a happy life, and it’s this outlook that continues to drive growth,” APPA CEO and President Bob Vetere said.

Bob Vetere shared his thoughts on the pet industry’s growth at the Global Pet Expo, an event sponsored by APPA and the Pet Industry Distributors Association (PIDA). The Global Pet Expo is an annual trade show where new pet products are presented. During the event, Vetere revealed that Americans spent over $60 billion on their pets in 2017. The figures show that there was significant growth across all pet categories — including veterinary care, grooming, pet sitting, and other services — except in the purchases of live animals.

“The industry is moving beyond simply the humanization of pets to where they are now widely accepted as part of the pet owner’s lifestyle,” he said.

In a press release, Vetere stated that more pet owners are interested in providing a higher quality of life for their animal family members. As such, the pet industry is responding with premium merchandise and services. One example of this is PetCoach. According to QC Online, Petco is trying a new strategy to fulfill pet-owners desires with PetCoach. This new strategy focuses on services pet-lovers seek for their furry friends. PetCoach opened just recently and is being tested in San Diego in the location of a former Petco store.


There are only a few products on display at PetCoach. Instead, there is a veterinary clinic, capable of handling any pet need or emergency except invasive surgery. Opposite the clinic is a groomer’s section with a self-washroom that provides all the necessary equipment to give pets a proper bath. There is also a dog day-care and training section. Even further in the building is a vet-approved food section.

PetCo’s new strategy with PetCoach almost confirms the latest trends in the pet industry today and explains why this particular business sector continues to grow. According to The Balance Careers, pet owners are becoming more conscious about their furry friends’ health. As such, they are feeding their pets more organic foods. Also, pet services have continued to encompass holistic treatments, like pet massages, pet sitting, and pet therapy.