NEW YORK — Attest, a consumer research SaaS platform, released data May 18 detailing spending habits and pet ownership of American pet parents. Among the data, Attest revealed that over half of pet owners are open to splurging on more expensive, premium pet food products.

According to Attest, 19% of Americans reported adopting a new pet during the pandemic, specifically during November 2021. With this data, Attest surveyed 400 pet parents throughout the United States to find out how pet owners’ shop for their pets, among other behaviors.

Past research from various sources has shown that many pet parents consider their pets to be part of the family. Attest’s data reveals how deep that sentiment goes.

To ensure their pets feel like family, 50.5% of pet parents purchase premium pet food, 33.2% give their pets vitamins and supplements, 21.1% cook their own pet’s food, and 14.8% participate in a pet treat subscription plan, according to the data.

On top of premium pet food products, data also revealed that 48.2% of pet parents buy their pets birthday and/or holiday gifts, which can include food, treats, toys and more.

Attest also found that in terms of total pet spending, which includes food and supplies, most pet parents are not splurging. According to the data, 29.6% of pet parents spend about $26 to $50 per month, 19.3% spend $76 to $100 per month, 18% spend $51 to $75 per month, and 10.3% spend $100 to $125 per month.

Amount spent of pet food and supplies per month by US pet parents

“While monthly spending on pets isn’t astronomically high for most Americans, the energy spent doting on their pets is the real opportunity for those in the pet goods space,” said Jeremy King, chief executive officer and founder of Attest. “It can be safely assumed that pet ownership is more of a lifestyle than a mere expense for American pet owners. This is particularly highlighted in this research as it found that Americans love to make their pets feel a part of the family, including them in celebrations and outings.”

Despite the pandemic, Attest found that most pet parents prefer to purchase pet food and supplies in-person. For pet treats, 42.6% of owners purchase these products via a pet store in-person, and for pet food, 35.3% purchase in-person via a pet store and 34% purchase in-person via a supermarket. 

Only 13% of pet parents purchase pet food online and 15% purchase pet treats online, according to Attest.

Attest also found that pet food and pet treat purchases vary in frequency. For pet food, the majority of pet parents (39%) purchase these products weekly and 35% purchase monthly. For pet treats, most pet parents (34%) purchase them monthly and 24% purchase them weekly.

“For those in the pet goods space, the data presents major opportunities especially for brick-and-mortar outlets given that the majority of pet owners make their purchases there,” King said.

Read more about pet retail trends.