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Shoppers on a tighter leash


The recession has taken a toll on the pet category, according to some companies. A recent report from Cascadia Capital revealed that 35% of consumers said they curtailed pet expenditures in 2011 due to the economy. Spending on pets is expected to hit the $50 billion mark in 2011, an increase of 5% over 2010, according to the American Pet Products Association. Packaged Facts predicted that the industry will grow 5.9% in 2012.

The pet food category, which continues to get more crowded as segmentation increases, had limited growth. Growth in the super premium segment has slowed, according to 
Cascadia Capital.

Sales of meat treats, vegetarian treats and weight-control treats also were on the rise since 2008, according to a representative from the APPA. Nutraceutical treats are growing at a fast pace, particularly in the specialty channel.

According to the APPA’s 2011/2012 National Pet Owners Survey, among dog toys purchased in 2010, types that were purchased more often since 2008 included dental ropes, plush toys and hard/solid rubber toys. According to the survey, 39% of pet owners purchased solid/rubber toys versus just 28% in 2008. 

Grooming and health products also are growing segments in the category, and sales of dog beds were up last year, based on data from the APPA.


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

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