The hottest pet trends of 2013

By on October 9, 2013

What is a trend? Quite simply, a trend is a stronger than usual movement in one way or another. As we approach the end of 2013, and cover trends during the last few weeks of the year here at PetsInOmaha, we’ve scoured all sorts of articles, magazines, lists, and more for the most common, upward trending, pet-related things of the year.

1. Popular in people’s gestation as well, organic foods made in the U.S.A. are on the rise in the pet food industry. Also food-related are natural, organic, homemade, and gourmet treats for our four-legged friends. These things are premium-priced, but happiness for our pups and kitties are worth the extra buck or two each visit to the store for our pet supplies, right? It sure seems that way.

2. Typically, our dogs eat dry food from a bag. That is totally normal and most foods meet all your dog’s nutritional and dietary needs. Some cats eat the same kind of dry foods; others prefer the wet food that comes from a can. A trend that has presented itself in 2013 is an upward swing of owners feeding their dogs and cats premium-priced, refrigerated foods. These foods are higher in quality, but don’t provide much more of a health benefit than the regular, typical food your animals have eaten for years.

3. Another trend is an increase of sales in vitamins, neutracueticals, and supplements for animals. Pet medication sales are up overall- in fact sales were up 7 percent from 2011 to 2012 and numbers are continuing to climb. Holistic medicine and alternative therapies are also on the rise, so it’s no surprise that vitamins, supplements and other non-traditional treatments are growing, too.

4. “High-style” products are on the rise. Yes, some of us want our animals to travel around in style. It’s not just the lady who wants to be seen at the country club; her dog also “needs” to be the center of attention apparently. These “high-style” items include pet strollers, car seats, “cribs” and other luxury beds, and safety gates for around the house. We will leave our opinions to ourselves here, but we include marketing professionals, so if there’s a market, go for it.

5. More people are owning pets. 56 percent of American households have animals. That’s up from last year and as Generation X folks continue to adopt at a higher rate than Boomers, this number will surely rise for years to come.

6. Pet insurance is one the rise. First, pet insurance is, according to Wikipedia, a means to pay, partially or totally, for veterinary treatment of the insured person’s ill or injured pet. Some policies will pay out when the pet dies, or if it is lost or stolen. Look back in our archives for a great article on pet insurance which includes options if you decide to insure your pet.

As veterinary medicine is increasingly employing expensive medical techniques and drugs, and owners have higher expectations for their pets’ health care and standard of living than previously, the market for pet insurance has increased greatly.

7. On a happy note, the number of “retail” pets is on the decline. This is the number of pets who are run out of puppy and kitty mills and other like places. Knowing this we can say, happily, that the number of pets coming from shelters, non-profits, rescues and other similar places is on the rise.

8. Something that is a little troubling, but not very, is the fact that veterinary care in down a bit overall. On one hand, we understand that discretionary income is down and pet care is probably one of the first places dollars are cut from. On the other hand, we can also see that the number of low-cost spay and neuter clinics are on the rise; as are lower-cost vet clinics. Folks are still caring for their pets; they are just finding cheaper ways to do so without sacrificing safety and quality. This makes us happy at PetsInOmaha.

These are 8 of the most popular trends in 2013. Do you have any that we’ve neglected to mention? Hit us up on Facebook at PetsInOmaha or on Twitter a@PetsInOmaha.

Another growing practice was suggested by one of our newest partners, Omaha’s Paws to Angels. Cherie from the organization indicates that one of the biggest demands for pet parents these days is, at the time of death, they want their pets treated in death as any other member of our families (humans or otherwise) would be treated. We always love and miss our pets, but more traditional memorial services are on the rise, as is the idea of treating the recently deceased with love, dignity, and respect. Check out Paws to Angels on our directory page as they’ve recently partnered with

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