U.S. Pet Market Outlook, 2021-2022

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Published Mar 30, 2021 | 311 Pages | Pub ID: LA16110877
U.S. Pet Market Outlook, 2021-2022

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U.S. retail sales of pet products and services reached $107 billion in 2020, up 9% over 2019, due largely to a COVID-19 driven spike in pet population. All pet and veterinary industry trends—from how and why we get new pets to which pet care services we use and where—now intertwine with retail channel shopping trends.

Because most of the pet industry impacts associated with COVID-19 are in fact accelerations of existing trends, only a limited “return to normal” can be expected. Instead, COVID-19 has fast-forwarded the industry into the future. In 2021 and beyond, this new iteration of an “omnimarket” competitive landscape will be evident in several trends and effects:
  • A permanent remix of physical and digital shopping behaviors.
  • A growing role for direct manufacturer-to-consumer selling and shipping, along with retailer-based autoship and same-day delivery.
  • A continued diversification of the veterinary sector, including through in-store clinics or at-store vet clinic pop-ups, along with online pet pharmacies.
  • An expanded role for store-anchored (brick-and-mortar and/or virtual) pet acquisition or adoption, new pet set up, and training/obedience services.
Along with the re-confirmed recession resistance of the pet industry, several factors support a very positive near- and long-term outlook for the pet market. A surge in pet acquisition and adoption, across pet types, continued through the Christmas/Winter Holidays 2020. And once pets are homed, as evident in robust pet product sales and veterinary service revenues despite COVID, most pet care spending is non-discretionary. Moreover, stay-at-home and work-from home dynamics during the pandemic have deepened human/pet bonds, increasing the disposition among pet owners and “pet parents” to spend generously on pet care products and services to keep their pets (and themselves) healthy and happy.

Scope and Methodology

This report analyzes current and projects future retail sales and trends across the U.S. pet industry, factoring in the known and longer-term impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. The report examines collectively and separately four sectors of pet products and services—pet food, non-food pet supplies, veterinary services, and non-medical pet services—paying particular attention to the market impact of e-commerce and technology-driven and other emerging products and services.

The information contained in this report was obtained from primary and secondary research. Primary research includes national online consumer polls of U.S. adult pet owners (age 18+) conducted on an ongoing basis by Packaged Facts, to measure purchasing patterns and attitudes regarding pet products and services. With sample sizes of approximately 2,000 pet owners, these surveys are based on national online research panels that are census representative on the primary demographic measures of age, gender, geographic region, race/ethnicity, and household income. The proprietary Packaged Facts surveys primarily cited in this report were conducted in November/December 2000, February 2021, and February/March 2021.

The discussion of consumer patterns also draws on trended MRI National Consumer Study data though the Fall 2020 release, with field dates through November 2020, thereby capturing COVID-19 impacts.

Our primary research also includes interviews with pet market experts and participation in pet industry events including the American Pet Products Association’s Global Pet Expos, Petfood Industry/Watt Publishing’s Petfood Forums, and the North American Veterinary Community (NAVC) VMX Veterinary Conferences and Media E-Commerce Summits. The analysis also reflects on-site examination of retail and service provider venues and Internet canvassing.

Secondary research includes information- and data-gathering from consumer business and trade publications including Pet Age, Pet Business, Pet Product News International, Petfood Industry, and Veterinary Practice News; company profiles in trade and consumer publications; annual reports of companies in the pet market; and information culled from Packaged Facts’ extensive pet market research database and report collection.

Our estimates of market size and company performance are based on reported revenues of pet product manufacturers, retailers, and pet services providers; background sales data from syndicated sales-tracking sources; surveys of independent and chain pet store retailers; government data including U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Surveys; and figures from other market research sources.

This report also provides proprietary new pet ownership data for 2020, factoring in the recent surge in pet adoption as well as full-year 2020 product sales trends.

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