With more pet owners working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the durable pet products market is getting a boost, according to a new report by market research firm Packaged Facts. Officials said that they expect the market to increase 10 percent in 2020 bringing sales to $5.7 billion, with steady annual gains projected for the market through 2024.

“The number of pet owners working from home has risen dramatically during the pandemic, and many will likely continue to do so for the foreseeable future,” officials said in a statement. “Additionally, although pandemic-related restrictions have begun to ease, traveling for work or pleasure won’t likely return to pre-pandemic levels anytime soon.”

Packaged Facts survey results confirm that as a result of the virus, 81 percent of pet owners are going outside of the home less, 78 percent are doing less leisure travel, 58 percent are working away from their typical workplace and 52 percent are doing less business travel.

“Greater engagement with pets has become a welcome way to pass the time and stay healthy over the past several months, driving up sales of human/pet interactive toys and outdoor items such as leashes, collars, ball launchers and so on,” said David Sprinkle, research director for Packaged Facts, which is based in Rockville, Md.

Other categories seeing an increased demand, according to the report, include confinement products (gates and kennels) to help owners establish pet-free zones in the home, and décor-related products such as pet beds to help owners “spruce up” their living spaces.

“As pet owners begin to transition back into a lifestyle that gets them out of the house more, items such as food and treat dispensers and pet cameras will help owners assuage some of the guilt of leaving their pets at home alone,” officials said. “If the pandemic demonstrated anything about the relationship between pets and pet owners, it is that pets provide comfort and emotional support for owners unable to socialize with friends and family, encouraging deeper bonds that make pet owners more likely to spend generously on home-based pet health, recreation, and pampering.”

The report, “Durable Dog and Cat Petcare Products, 3rd Edition, can be found here.