Consumer Behavior on Animals, Pet Services, and Feed

Goals

To identify insights on how COVID-19 is affecting purchasing behaviors when it comes to the purchasing of feed, veterinary services, or animals.

Early Findings

Pet Supplies

  • According to data analyzing e-commerce stores in the United States, online transactions for the pet category was up 1.81 on April 27, compared to 1.24 on December 9, 2019.
  • Dog food was among the fastest-growing e-commerce product categories, increasing to 159%.
  • Chewy, a pet care company, had a 35% increase in the first quarter.
  • In the US, consumer spending on pet food + care increased to 38.7% in March 2020.
  • "According to 1010data, overall pet supply sales for the week ending March 15 were 23% above January and February levels, but by April 1 they had fallen to 27% lower than January and February levels."
  • "Pet supply spending was up 47% YoY on March 18, but store visits were only 8% up. After that, there was a decline in spending and store visits, and spending fell to only 24% up YoY."
  • Online sales of cat food (+401%), cat supplies (+204%), and small animal supplies (+175%) have increased, based on data from March 25, 2020.

Pet and Veterinary Services

  • "82% of veterinary practices are doing curbside only; 62% are no longer doing elective surgeries; and, based on purchasing behaviors, canine and feline core vaccinations and surgical suite procedures are on a steady decline."
  • According to a McKinsey report, expected spending on pet-care services is between -50% to -30% in the US.

Animal Feed

  • The coronavirus crisis has negatively impacted the supply of animal feed, however, the demand for animal feed has been relatively stable.
  • "The animal feed industry has also been badly affected by the closure of restaurants around the globe". The worst affected sectors include lamb production, aquaculture, beef, and veal.
  • Many US farmers resorted to panic buying animal feed in the anticipation of potential shortages and other concerns.
  • The demand for animal feed additives spiked during the first week of April 2020.

Average Index of Pet Supplies (in the last 7 days; in the US)

  • Small Animal Supplies 362
  • Bird Supplies 353
  • Dog Supplies 263
  • Cat Supplies 258
  • Reptile and Amphibian Supplies 249
  • Fish Supplies 239
  • Pet Supplies 169

Summary

  • For the initial hour, we tried identifying as much of the requested information as possible. We were able to identify some early insights on general consumer behavior around pet supplies and pet services. We also found some general insights on consumer behavior around animal feed, however, insights specific to how much animal feed is bought online vs. feed stores did not appear immediately available in this search.
  • However, the insights above suggest a general trend toward increased online purchasing.
  • In the course of our research, we also came across more general insights on the impact of COVID-19 on the global animal feed industry, as well as insights on how pet food manufacturers, suppliers, and retailers are responding to COVID-19 concerns, which might also be of interest.
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