In this final installment of the Maru/Matchbox Pet Care Pod, Erica Ruyle, SVP of Qualitative Insights, once again joined me to talk through the last of a two part episode on areas of growing spend in pet care. Specifically, the behavioral science behind where pet owners are splurging.
With the previous episode of our pet care podcast focused on splurging across treats, toys, and other at home care, we opened episode 5 with a quick chat around developing channel dynamics in the pet space. In particular, how the changes in pet purchases are reflective of a wider and growing demand across all retail purchases for a truly integrated, omnichannel experience.
We then focused the remainder of the episode on two primary types of pet services:
1. Personal care and training services: This includes grooming, walking, pet sitting, kennel services, and classes/coaching for dog owners and cat owners.
2. Pet healthcare: This includes the growing options to keep your pet happy and healthy.
In the area of personal care and training services for pets, several trends are converging at once, including a challenge to certain businesses like walking and pet sitting due to an increased amount of time spent at home for more pet owners due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Naturally, these care services have been managed primarily by the owners rather than continuing to hire outside help in these areas.
At the same time, grooming and training are growing needs, particularly for dogs as they may struggle with socialization due to a more isolated environment. Mobile grooming services that will come to your home, or services that provide easy, no contact drop off/pick up, are growing in popularity, as few people are willing to take on at home grooming themselves, especially with larger animals.
The pet healthcare space has two significant areas of growth: telemedicine and preventative care. The prior is growing for all healthcare sectors, but particularly for pets who may need a follow up or check in appointment. Many veterinarians are even offering telemedicine appointments as an alternative to traditional vet visits.
For preventative care, this is not only a growing sector, but an area where we expect to see much more growth in the future when the economy opens back up and some households have fewer people at home. Particularly for dogs, this could be a time of increased anxiety, and there are a wide range of services available to help with that. Acupuncture, acupressure, massage, and other wellness and total-health oriented services are expected to be leaned on more heavily to address these ongoing issues.
Listen to Episode 5
That’s a wrap. Thanks for joining us over the last few weeks as Erica and I explored recent findings in the pet care space and discussed what the near future holds for pet owners and the industry as a whole.
More podcast adventures are coming soon, so please feel free to reach out with your questions or even topic ideas.