CareCredit - Women's Health April 2024

Why Shopping for Pets Is Getting Even Easier 

Amid the pandemic, it appears that 1 in 5 American households chose to add a new furry friend to their lives.  

As the trend of being pet parents continues, the market for pet care products is booming. Notably, the market for fresh and frozen pet food has grown, with brands like The Farmer’s Dog gaining popularity as pet owners provide more than just standard kibble for their furry family members. 

Additionally, advancements in pet healthcare are making it more accessible and transparent. Companies like CareCredit, along with their pet insurance brand Pets Best, are contributing to this shift.  

Moreover, pet owners are taking pet fashion to new heights, with brands ranging from Anthropologie and H&M to luxury names like HermèsVineyard VinesRalph Lauren, and Prada offering exclusive clothing lines for pets. 

Considering these trends, the global pet economy is on the rise, with the potential to reach half a trillion dollars by 2030. This growth has enticed fashion companies to venture beyond the catwalk and into the pet care market. 

The Pet Business

PetSmart, Petco, Chewy and all the brands that can be found at these retailers are also looking to claim more market share in the pet’s business. And they’re doing it alone and by joining forces.  

For instance, in August, PYMNTS reported that Petco partnered with the dog nutrition brand Ollie to offer high-quality, human-grade dog food to Petco customers. 

This collaboration provides pet owners with access to a service that was previously exclusive to online, direct-to-consumer subscriptions. Petco is the first nationwide pet retailer to offer Ollie’s products. 

Read more: Petco Teams With Ollie to Offer Dogs Human-Grade Meals 

Chewy also revealed during its latest quarterly earnings report that Chewy performance well during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Across all aisles, including hard goods, foot traffic and sales pirouetted past expectations, demonstrating a year-over-year increase in conversion rates. 

Read more: Consumers May Trim Spending, but Not on Fido, Chewy Says 

Pet Healthcare and Affordability

In an interview with PYMNTS, Jonathan Wainberg, senior vice president and general manager at CareCredit, a Synchrony product, said: “Can you imagine as a human finding out you had a heart attack, and being told you could get the double bypass, but it would cost more, so instead, you could get the single bypass surgery?” The question highlighted the differences between human and pet healthcare, the terms used in the veterinary world, and the influence of costs in the discussion.  

In contrast to human healthcare, when pet owners go to a veterinarian, they receive potential treatment options and their associated costs right after relevant tests and assessments. While costs are still a consideration in human medical discussions, they are typically not openly addressed by the doctor during patient conversations. 

Even though the situation might be unsettling, this conversation is necessary. So Wainberg and his team have taken the initiative to create spaces where pet owners can work together with veterinarians to secure the best possible outcome for their pets, all without worrying about finances. 

CareCredit is accessible in about 80% of veterinary clinics across the country. 

When it comes to ensuring the long-term health of pets, Wainberg explains that Pets Best, a pet insurance company acquired by CareCredit, promotes ongoing pet care. Synchrony has made efforts to incorporate new features into insurance packages to enhance overall pet health and wellness. These tiers enable pet parents to emphasize regular checkups and preventive care. 

Read more: CareCredit Says Pets Deserve All Essentials, Not Just Kibble and Toys 

Chewy has also entered the healthcare scene with the launch of Chewy Vet Care, a network of pet health practices. 

According to PYMNTS, the initial veterinary practices are set to launch in South Florida in early 2024, with additional openings planned throughout the year. These facilities will provide services such as regular checkups, urgent care and surgical procedures. 

Read more: Chewy Launches Vet Service as Consumers Keep Spending on Pets 

Pet Fashion Essentials

While fashion for pets isn’t anything new, more brands that humans already know and probably shop are getting into the vertical. For consumers who want their furry friends to wear as many of the same labels as they do, it’s possible as affordable brands like H&M have made their contributions to the furry cohort as well as Louis Vuitton and Hermès

Even brands like True Religion, experiencing a resurgence due to the nostalgic Y2K trend among humans, have entered the pet fashion arena.  

Reportedly, True Religion’s latest collection includes a range of items, from harnesses to accessories suitable for colder weather. The signature denim, a fundamental element of True Religion’s offerings, is incorporated into several products, including bedding and leashes. Lovers of the double-stitched denim line can expect to find very similar pieces they would probably opt to wear themselves, if they could.