Author: petsforever

Trends in the Pet Food Industry

EuroMonitor has recently released a new edition of Pet Care Industry Information.

EuroMonitor has recently released a new edition of pet care industry data that provides latest insights on the dog and cat food industry performance in 2018 and key prospects through 2023. The major takeaways from the report are the trends in competition, the growth in cat ownership, continuing strong online sales growth and premiumization.

Pet food industry Competition

Pet food is a fairly concentrated industry. The top five companies account for more than 40% of global sales. This is striking and different from other Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) industries. However, recently global manufacturers have been under significant pressure from new and local players.

Blue Buffalo has shown a continuous success story with a 138% growth in the last 5 years. This shows that pet owners are willing to spend more on their pet’s nutrition.

Rachel Ray has also achieved great success, and it was one of the fastest growing brands in 2017. Both these brands have been recent targets of M&A.

The developing markets also saw a rise in competition with local players stepping up their credentials by using their knowledge of local consumers and leveraging synergies with rising competition.

Cat Ownership

Recent developments in the industry have seen the rise of popularity of cats in markets all over, largely overtaking dogs’ popularity. The rise in popularity can be attributed to cats’ playful and relatively more independent nature, making them the preferred companions for fast paced, urbanised young owners.

This has also led to a rise in sales of cat treats and cat foods. The category has seen high levels of premiumisation with more nutrient rich, alternative protein and functional diets coming to the markets.

Global premium cat food sales are expected to grow by 4% in 2018 with absolute growth sales expected to reach USD 2 billion in the next 5 years. Mid-price cat food is also expected to post good growth.

Strong Online Sales Trajectory

Online retail sales has been gaining significant traction across developed and developing markets. Particularly in the United States where growth rates have been phenomenal. There has been a lot of action in the industry as Pet Smart acquired Chewy (a pure play retailer). Target and Walmart have pushed omni-channel sales and Amazon is stepping up as well.

Key motivators behind the shift to e-commerce can be attributed to price points, convenience and product selection.

Premiumisation

Premiumization has helped define and generate growth in the industry for many years, but the ways it has done so have been changing over time.

New, locally and sustainably sourced ingredients are playing an important role in adapting to consumers’ demands. The rise in healthy living lifestyles of the owners has percolated to the way they interact with their pets, especially the way they feed them.

Globally, premium dog and cat food products have experienced strong growth with 25% growth in value over the last five years and has an expected 4% CAGR for the next 5 years, according to Euromonitor International’s latest estimates.

The Changing Trends of Pet Toys

Before the digital and social media reigned over our collective consciousness, having pets and spending time with them were a personal concept. To many of us, may be, it still is, but for many more pet owners, things now need to be ‘shareable’.

Pet toys have not been able to escape the trend. Earlier, a wicker ball for your cat, tennis ball for your dog would have been perfect. Not so anymore.

As technology becomes more and more prominent in our lives, there are two main driving forces affecting the landscape of pet toys – photogenicity and interactivity.

PHOTOGENICITY

Is it instagrammable? The pet industry was not so fashionable a decade ago. But pet owners are getting increasingly conscious of how their pets appear in photos. They are concerned about how the dog’s collar compliments their outfits, but they are also being drawn to toys that appear good on camera.

This aspect of pet toys is becoming increasingly significant, as social media continues to grow and the younger generation starts to dominate the market.

‘Stark Raving Cat’, a US based company, offers a range of such toys. They offer catnip joints, which look like, well regular joints. Your cat posing with a catnip joint is very instagrammable!

INTERACTIVITY

Spending quality time with your pets can lead to a stronger connection with them, and that is beneficial for the health of everyone involved. Interactive toys make the pet’s playtime more fulfilling and augment the bond between the pet owner and the pet. Interactive toys are ones thatlead to a collaboration of playtime between both pet and pet owner.

Industry experts have pointed out towards a growing demand from pet owners for fun and innovative toys for their pets. As technology comes more into play in the industry, pet toys involving automation and efficiency without completely eliminating the human interaction are expected to dominate the space.

OTHER TRENDS

Outside of photgenicity and interactive features of pet toys, few other trends are driving demand.

  • Eco-Friendly

As global warming and climate change become a regular part of the human discourse, products that keep both environmental and user safety in mind are preferred. So conscious pet owners opt for toys that are made from materials that are sustainably produced and in ways that do not deplete the ecosystem. ‘Made from recycled materials’ or ‘reclaimed from waste products’ are tags that are now being preferred.

  • Affordable

Affordability remains a major driving force in buyer decision making. Affordable does not exactly mean cheap. It is subjective, as to each person, affordability could be at different price points. Premium products have their own niche; however, in general the average pet owner can spend only so much on a pet toy.

  • Durability

Durability and reliability continue to be a key concern for pet owners. They wish for toys that are not only entertaining and interactive but also that are physically durable, as they are more economical and generally more environment friendly.

So while technology driven factors are the leading trends in the industry, the traditional factors of affordability and durability continue to drive pet owners decision making. In the end, we are all here to make our pets happy & healthy and form strong bonds with our pawed companions.

Tech and the Pet Industry

Technology has changed our lives. Now it is doing the same for our pets.

As technology has become an integral part of our lives, it has also started to influence how we interact, care and even feed our pets. A new generation of start-ups have started implementing everything from mobile technology to Internet of Things (IoT) to offer products, which forge a stronger bond between the pets and the pet owners.

  1. Pet Tracking

The thought of losing a pet or having him run away is enough to bring distress to a pet owner. However, in recent years, GPS devices like ‘Gibi’ and ‘The Paw Tracker’ have become increasingly popular ways to track lost pets. These devices are easily attached to the pet’s collar and the pet can be tracked using computer or mobile devices.

 

PetHub Incoffers what it has dubbed “the next generation pet identification tags”. These are embedded with a NFC chip and have a unique QR code and internet address, as well as a phone number. The company claims that thesefeatures can be used by ‘good Samaritans’ to immediately identify and return lost pets.

 

  1. Real Time Monitoring & Data Tracking

The advent of technology into our day-to-day lives have allowed and made us fond of tracking and monitoring of personal data. Personal activity trackers such as Fitbit have become ubiquitous. Similar devices for pets have also been introduced in the market. Fitbark is a device developed by vets, which collects physical activity and rest levels for dogs throughout the day. This can be synched with an app on the pet owner’s phone, which will help him / her in monitoring changes in behaviour and sharing useful information with the veterinarian.

 

  1. Remote Feeders

Assume you are at work when you get a notification on your phone sent by your dog. You open the app and voila! You and your dog are connected through a pet cam. After a few moments you tap on ‘treat’ and one drops from a dispenser. Petcube is one such company that offers an ‘interactive treat cam’. As per their website ‘Petcube Bites is an all-in-one Wi-Fi pet camera with built-in treatdispenser that lets you train and reward your pet remotely.’

 

The Remoca Pet Bowl, offered by a Japanese company, is an automated pet feeding system which refills itself and has a built in camera that allows the pet owner to watch your pet on your smartphone as it eats or drinks water from the bowl.

 

  1. Pet Toys

We all love playtime with our pets, but they absolutely exceed us in both the zeal and stamina for playing. iFetch is an automatic interactive ball launcher dog toy for active dogs, which solves this problem. The toy launches the ball to a distance, which the dog can fetch and put again in the toy to relaunch. They offer different models of the toy for different types of dogs.

 

Bolt by FroliCat is one such toy for cats. It is an interactive laser toys which casts ‘exciting laser patterns’ on the floor or the wall which the cats like to chase, pounce and bat upon.

 

  1. Pet Social Network

There has been a considerable increase in the number of social networking sites for pet owner. These website are fuelled by the pet owners urge to share and connect with others who share the same passion.

 

Pets Forever is one such social-powered online community that’s passionate about pets’ wellbeing and theirconnection with humans who love and care about them.

 

Ithad started out as a digital memorial concept,but has now evolved into a one-stop-home for everythingpets:

  • Pet-owners can access support and services to help them care for their pets.
  • It is a community for pet-lovers to connect, socialise and share with others.
  • Animal organisations, businesses and charities can also interact with the community of passionatepet-lovers.

Multiple Ways Your Dog Tells You It Loves You Each And Every Day

We all know that communication between one species and another is minimal at best.  And, as dog owners, we understand that more than most.  We all wish we could understand what our companion is saying, and what they are thinking.

However, it seems that ours pets may be communicating with us, in their own special manner, and we are just not tuned into to it.  Let’s take a look at the multiple ways our dogs tell us they love us each and every day.

What Those “Puppy Eyes” Really Mean

Many people tend to assume that when a dog gives us “puppy eyes” they have an ulterior motive.  Maybe they are wanting treat, or maybe they are just bored and want attention.  In actuality, “puppy eyes” are a dogs way of expressing their love for us.  They will look upon us with sheer love which is expressed through their eyes.  The look of innocence that we see with “puppy eyes” is their way of giving us a hug or bestowing us a kiss—their means of showing us affection.

Why They Want To Sleep In Our Beds

It is a nightly fight—trying to keep our companions off the bed.  But, why are they so adamant about sleeping with us?  Why would they prefer to sleep in our beds, rather than on the floor or in their own beds?  Simple—we are the number one person in their lives.  And, as such, they want to take advantage of any time they may be able to spend with us, even if that means we are sleeping.

Jumping On and Almost Tackling Us

Many of us tend to get upset when our companion jumps on or tackles us when we walk through the door after a long day at work.  As it turns out, they are not trying to annoy us, get our attention, or be pests.  Our companions are so overjoyed to see us, that this is the only manner in which they can express that joy.  A pet jumping on us is a simple equivilant of if we ourselves jumped for joy.  Our pets are so happy to see us, they can not contain themselves, and all that joy spills over into jumping.

Not Wanting To Necessarily Play Fetch

Pet owners, such as ourselves, tend to spoil our companions.  Although that is done in multiple ways, the most obvious is when we buy them toys.  However, did you know that when your pet carries around a toy, or a ball, it is not necessarily because they are looking for a game of fetch.  To the contrary, it is more likely that they love that particular toy the most, and since we are their favorite humans, they want to share the toy with us so that we may play with it too.

When Our Pets Stare At Us As We Leave

We have all experienced the sadness and guilt of leaving our companion to go to work or to run errands.  When we do leave, most of will just lay down and stare at us.  This is not out of sadness or even to make us feel guilty—we put that guilt on ourselves.  If your companion is calm, and even lies down when you begin to leave, it is to let you know that they trust that you will be returning, and they are okay with that.

As you can see, our pets do communicate with us, in their own ways, we just have to be more receptive and observant of the signs.  Although most of the methods of communication listed above are pretty important, the most important is the communication of love between you both.

How To Handle Pet Stress During The Holidays

The holidays are here and in full swing, which means that even more stress has set in for us pet owners.  But, what most owners do not realize is that their pets feel and experience the stress of the holidays as well.

Add in the fact that you are gone more often, for holiday parties and visiting family, and you can easily see that the holidays are just as rough on our furry friends than on us, if not even more so.

However, there are a few simple signs that you can look out for that will clue you into the possibility that your pet is indeed suffering from holiday-induced stress.  We will take a look at a few of them below.

One sure fire indicator that your pet is not feeling themselves is that of a reduction or loss of appetite.  Most breeds are very tuned into their owners.  And as such, when the owner is stressed the pet picks up on this and in turn becomes stressed themselves.  Whether the stress causes an uneasy or upset stomach or just an overall uneasiness, reduction or loss of appetite completely can result.

Another sign of your pet being stressed may present in the form of lip licking and yawning  When dogs become anxious they will exhibit this feeling outwardly in the form of lip licking.  It is their version of a nervous tick so to say.  They need a means to outwardly express their inward stress, and lip licking is the most common method.  Yawning is another possible outward expression they may use as well.

The next sign that your pet may be having holiday stress is that of them sticking to you like Velcro.  When your pet is shadowing your every move, and staying as close to you as possible at all times, this is them telling you they are stressed and anxious about something.  Many pet owners agree that this type of behavior is seen more during the holidays than most any other time of the year.  Your pet is wanting to keep close because although they are stressed, they feel that being close to you that everything will be alright.  That you will keep them safe and make sure that nothing will hurt or harm them.

Finally, one of the most widely observed signs of stress in pets is exhibited with shaking and shivering.  You may think it is because your pet is cold, but in actuality, that is most probably not the case.  When a pet becomes anxious, nervous, or stressed, much like people do they have a cross between a panic attack and an anxiety attack.  And again, like us humans that can manifest as physical shivering or shaking.

As with any change in your pets attitude or demeanor, it is best to check with a vet to make sure there are no underlying medical problems present.  If none are found, then the most probable cause for the change in behavior is stress.  Keep in mind that just because our companions have fur, feathers, or scales doesn’t mean that they won’t be affected to some point with holiday stress.

Factors Driving Trends in the Pet Care Industry

Factors Driving Trends in the Pet Care Industry

The changing dynamics of the pet care industry and factors driving them.

How we chose to spend time with, interact with and care for our pets has seen a whirlwind of change in the recent past. The growth in the pet care industry has been strong and it is expected to expand stably in the future. Here are some factors that are shaping the trends in the industry.

  1. Humanization of Pets

Pets are now a part of the family and less & less people are buying pets for functional usages such as guard dogs. A poll conducted by Fortune states that more than 75% of the people surveyed consider ‘pets as a beloved member of the family’.

The closeness of the relationship means a demand for ‘human grade’ products for the pets. The industry has already obliged. The Casper dog mattresses are one such product.

  1. Sustainability

The people’s inclination towards products that promote and advocate transparency and sustainability is palpable. The new generation of pet owners are ready to pay more for eco-friendly, sustainable and / or naturally sourced products.

4 Legger shampoo for dogs understands this very well and is not shy of advertising all such labels – ‘All Natural’, ‘Biodegradable’, ‘Vegan’, ‘Sustainable Ingredients’ and many more.

  1. Technology

Technology has taken over andhas become an integral part of our lives. Now it is doing the same for our pets. A whole gamut of tech-products for pets is on offer – activity trackers, innovative tech-based pet toys and remote feeders. A number of pet care startups have cropped up as well that offer everything from stay for your pets, a microbiome examination for your pet, walking services and whatnot.

  1. Premiumisation

Premiumisation is about elevating how we treat our pets. It is about creating the bridge between luxury and mass market. Premium products for pets are now driving strategies of growth for industry players. Age and breed segmentations have been key to achieving this.

Consumers are seeking out products that are niche. These include products that offer enhanced healthcare and dietary practice. Natural, organic and minimally processed are tags that command value in the pet food category. The pet owners dietary preferences are also observed to convert into demand for pet products which are gluten-free, grass-fed and cage-free protein sources.

However, price continues to be an important factor. People wish to feed their pets and care for them with good-quality products, but they would prefer if they could do it without spending too much.

  1. E-Commerce vs Brick & Mortar

While e-commerce has certainly overtook brick & mortar in certain areas of pet care, offline stores continue to dominate in veterinary care and pet grooming.

As an effect of the humanization aspect there has been a tendency to seek out newer and better services. This has led to a demand for speciality pet services like training, pet sitting and pet friendly travel, which is being captured by e-commerce.

Therefore, offline stores have realized that it is important to create experiences for the pets as well as pet owners.

Choosing a Pet – Seven Simple Steps

Choosing a Pet – Seven Simple Steps

The decision to adopt a pet is very important and should be thought out and discussed with everyone in the family.  Bringing any type of pet into the home is a major responsibility, one that can more often than not last for decades.  And, it is more than just about what type of pet you should get, although that is an important part of the decision as well.  When considering the newest possible family addition, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Plan Carefully

More often than not, the purchase of a pet is somewhat of an impulse buy.  However, in order to be the best owner to your new pet that you can be, you need to sit down and weigh you the pros and cons of actually taking on your newest family member.  Do your research on both species and breed to make sure that the pet in question is a good fit for you.  Make sure you understand what type of temperament your pet will exhibit.  You will need to know the level of care and attention needed, as every species and/or breed is different in this respect.  Finally, the average lifespan will indicate how long you can expect to have your pet and to meet its needs.

Factor In Your Families Lifestyle

This is one area that many families completely forget about, or simply ignore.  Where you live, and how much you are away from home are two very big factors to consider in choosing a pet.  Say,for instance, you decide to get a large dog.  Do you have a sizable fenced in yard, so that your new companion will have room to run and exercise?  Or maybe you are away from home a lot due to school activities or work.  In this case, your better choice may be a cat, as they are lower maintenance than say perhaps a dog.  Also, another area overlooked is that of when you decide to take a vacation.  So you have a reliable source to call upon to perhaps babysit your pet?  Cats can be pretty self-sufficient as long as they have water and food, but dogs are more in need of looking after on a day to day basis.

Think about cost

Like most things in the world today, there is also a cost to having a pet—any type of pet.  You are responsible for keeping their shots up to date, for feeding them, or providing them a bed, and for taking them to the vet should they become sick.  With dogs, there may be extra expenses for grooming, and if you decide to have them spayed or neutered there will be an expense for the surgery.  Make sure you understand that when you take on a pet that you are taking on the additional expenses required to the proper care of that pet.

Consider shelter adoption

Many people, when considering where to get their pet at, go straight to either a pet store or a breeder.  However, they are missing out on a chance to get a great companion by failing to check in with their local shelter.  Ever since I can remember, I have heard that shelter dogs make the best companions.  Why?  Because they have been where they have been, and seen what they have seen, and felt what they felt.  And in all that, they realize, on some level, just how lucky they are to have you as an owner.  They will be forever grateful for you pulling them out of the shelter, and giving them the love and attention that they need and crave.  Thusly, making them a most thankful companion who will remain loyal and loving all the rest of their lives.

Delegate responsibilities

When discussing the possible addition of a pet to the household, make sure that each member of the family understands what their delegated responsibility will be in helping care for your new pet.  Each member should be relied upon to do their duty so that all the work of caring for the new addition does not fall completely on one persons shoulders.  Delegate one individual for feeding, one for walking, and rotate for such things as bathing and brushing.  Get the whole family involved, and make it a fun task for everyone.

Think about training

If you are not lucky enough to adopt a pet that is already housebroken, then you will need to consider setting time aside through your day to work at getting your new addition trained.  Many find the best way to go is with pee pads.  Not only are they more convenient for you the owner, they allow your pet to have access for going more often, and be a source to catch possible accidents.  If your pet has problems in the areas of behavior, you may want to consider a professional trainer to help them to learn right from wrong.

Final steps

Finally, you will need to name your new pet.  This can be fun, but then again stressful at times.  Will you go with something simple?  Something traditional?  Or maybe something totally off the wall?  Whatever you name you chose, imagine yourself yelling it hundreds of times throughout your life.  Do you find you still like the name?  Then you may have a winner.

With just a little forethought and some weighing of options, the addition of a new pet to the family doesn’t have to be overly stressful.  Keep in mind that when you take on the responsibility that it will be for the pets entire life, and that you need to be the best owner you can be to your new companion and you should do just fine.

Bringing home a new pet is both exhilarating and exciting

How To Prepare For Your Newest Family Member

Bringing home a new pet is both exhilarating and exciting.  However, what is fun for you and your family, at the same time can quickly become nothing but major anxiety for your newest family member.  With just a little preparation, both you and your new companion can make an easier transition for everyone involved.

Have A Family Conference

Before bringing the new family member home, make sure everyone is on the same page and on board with what having a new pet entails, as well as what job each person is responsible for in regard to the new family addition.  In this manner, the possibility of confusion or problems will be minimize, which in turn will make the integration of your family and your new companion a smooth one.

Make Sure You Have Your Supplies

There are several items that are basic necessities to buy and have on hand for your new companion.

Crate

Your new family member will bet both nervous and scared in their new surroundings.  As a means of providing them a possible safe place, a crate can prove invaluable.  Also, if you are planning on crate training your companion, it is best to start from day one.

Bowls

Your new pet will need both a food bowl and a water bowl that is dedicated to just them.  This will get them used to the bowls themselves, and they should remain in the same spot as all time, for ease of being found by your companion.

Food and treats

It is suggested that you use the same food, and treats, that your companions is used to.  If you feel the need to change either their food or treats, do is slowly in small increments, to prevent any chance of an upset stomach.

Collar and leash

It is best to get your companion used to wearing a collar, and being led on a leash as soon as possible.  They will most assuredly fight the idea, but with a little time and patience, they will be walking by your side happily in no time.

Bed

Your companion really needs its own bed.  It is not a good idea to let them get in the habit of getting on the furniture if that is going to change down the road.  Not only will it confuse them, but once they have felt the comfinessof your furniture, they are less likely to give it up without a fight.

Toys

Every companion, no matter what age, loves toys.  However, with the younger family members, a chew toy can prove an invaluable asset.  Dogs chew—it is just their nature.  Even though you can’t change the fact that they chew, you can control what they do and do not chew on.

Cleaners

It is a given that at some time or another your companion will have an accident.  It is in your best interest to have cleaning supplies on hand to handle the issue, because the longer the issue is left unresolved, the harder it will be to deal with.

Baby gates

When first introducing your companion to their new home, it is best not to let them have full run from day one.  This only adds to their anxiety of being in a new situation.  It is suggested that you block them off, and limit them to one room, adding more rooms after a few days.  To aid in this endeavor, baby gates are a great idea.

Puppy-Proofing

Before your new companion arrives, make sure you have puppy-proofed your home.  Make sure to pick up any items and place them out of reach of your new companion, that may cause harm to them or they may cause harm to.

With a little time taken out to make the proper preparations, your companion will begin feeling like a member of the family in no time, and everyone will be happy and content.