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Litter for small dogs could be the next big trend among pet owners


ROCKVILLE, Md. — Litter for small dogs could become the next wave of in-demand items by pet owners, according to market research firm Packaged Facts. The company reports that despite the cat litter market being at $2.8 billion, it holds an opportunity for sales growth that does not depend entirely on felines.

Canines weighing under 25 pounds could be the next target, considering 12% of U.S. households own dogs weighing under pounds, while 43% have ones weighing between 8-24 pounds — making them the most popular household pet in the nation.

"Litter for dogs is an opportunity for cat litter marketers to expand into an entirely new demographic and attract a growing number of pet owners," Packaged Facts research director David Sprinkle said.

Packaged Facts suggests taking advantage of the trend of small dogs in urban settings, and creating products that would convenience this demographic. The company points out that dogs who have been littered-trained do not need to be taken outside as frequently as those who have not. The opportunity to create an environmentally product that could become biodegradable to becomes available as well.

"The shift to smaller dogs should continue in the years ahead, driven by both older and younger pet owners," Sprinkle said. "For older pet owners, smaller dogs can be much easier to manage, lighter to lift and requiring less outdoor time. As living situations change, smaller pets are more easily admissible to apartments and other group dwellings, including assisted living communities. Also favoring the smaller dog shift are preferences among younger pet owners, along with increased urbanization and apartment/condo ownership. In addition, for pet owners young and old alike, smaller dogs are easier to travel with and care for in vacation environments."

Beyond litter-training, the report also highlights the potential for the smaller dog trend to help bolster food sales — which Packaged Facts said face difficulties with volume sales, as these pets consume little food. It notes that size- and breed-specific foods could combat this potential issue.

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