Petco Looks to Fish, Birds, Snakes to Boost Subscription Revenue

Petco store

In an effort to raise its subscription revenue, Petco is looking beyond dogs and cats.

The company is expanding its health and wellness membership program Vital Care — until now just open to dogs and cats — to include birds, fish, reptiles and small pets, according to a Tuesday (Aug. 30) news release.

The program gives pet owners “savings and rewards on nutrition, supplies, services, veterinary care and more with benefits tailored to each species’ individual needs,” the release stated.

Petco said in the release it is the first national pet retailer to offer a comprehensive wellness plan of this type at scale. There are more than 13 million fish, 9 million bird, 6 million small animal, and 5 million reptile households in the country.

See also: Petco Buys Veterinary Services for its Stores

“Expanding Vital Care to birds, reptiles, fish and small animals makes it more affordable for their pet parents to bring home the right products that support the overall health and wellness of their beloved companion animals, which — based on the results in our pilot locations — we expect will bring in more customers more often, and enhance sales for our companion animal business,” said Petco Vice President of Animal Care Education and Merchandising Jonathan Williamson in the release.

The program costs $9.99 per month per pet type for new enrollees, according to the release. Pet parents who already have dogs or cats in the plan can add a bird, reptile, fish or small animal to their plan for another $7.99 per month per pet type.

The move comes at a time when “rising costs and growing frustration are leading consumers to reevaluate their paid subscriptions and cancel those they deem unwanted in a process known as churn,” as PYMNTS noted in the August Subscription Commerce Tracker®, done in collaboration with Vindicia.

Last week, Petco CEO Rob Coughlin pointed to the company’s subscription services as a bright spot during a softer second quarter, noting that “recurring customer revenue grew by 54% year over year, driven by repeat delivery, insurance, PupBox and Vital Care members.”

Read more: Petco’s Recurring Subscription Revenues Cushion Consumer Downshift

Total active Vital Care customers reached 22,000 in the quarter, a number that included customers who converted to Vital Care membership after Petco’s purchase of Thrive Pet Healthcare’s 50% stake in the parties’ pet hospital joint venture in March.

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