This Generation Is Shopping For Pets In-Person During the COVID-19 Pandemic

A higher percentage of younger pet owners are shopping in-person during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to findings from the American Pet Products Association (APPA)’s Second Volume of the APPA COVID-19 Pulse Study of Pet Ownership During the Pandemic. In addition, fewer owners indicated they are first-time users of pick-up services to procure pet supplies. 

As more and more states began opening back up in June, the second wave of research conducted during that time shows slightly more relaxed attitudes and behaviors among some segments of the population. Volume Two of the study takes a deeper dive into the data to reveal subtle shifts that are happening within various demographic groups from May to June as government response to the pandemic changed.

"In a world where COVID-19 information is changing daily, it’s important that we navigate this pandemic with real-time information and pay attention to the effects it’s having on various aspects of pet ownership," said Steve King, CEO of APPA. "We’re lucky to be among the few industries expected to be positioned for growth during this time, but we must work together, continue the research and remain nimble."

The Second Volume of research also shows that more gen X pet owners are expressing concern about the expense of having pets during COVID-19, with more implying they may switch brands to save money or plan to spend less money on pet food/supplies than they did in May. At the same time, a higher percentage of gen X pet owners report they actually spent more money on their pet in the past month.

Volume Two of the APPA COVID-19 Pulse Study of Pet Ownership During the Pandemic reveals trended insights into consumer attitudes and behaviors as we navigate this unprecedented time, including: changes to pet ownership, current shopping behaviors, outlets visited, pet products purchased and general attitudes toward the pandemic, including personal financial impact.

"It’s reassuring to see that pet ownership has not been negatively affected, as pet owners are spending more time with their pets and they remained focused on caring for their pets as they continue to appreciate the enjoyment of having pets in their lives," King said. "However, as concerns grow surrounding when life will get back to normal, financial stability in the long run and when the economy will bounce back from this pandemic, it’s important to stay informed."

The First Volume reflected research conducted in May of 2020. 

APPA is offering the full results of the studies—Volumes One and Two—free of charge to anyone interested. Email marketresearchsupport@americanpetproducts.org for more information.