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U.S. spent $55 billion + on pets last year

U.S. spent $55 billion + on pets last year

The U.S. (pop. 313.9 million+) spent an all-time high of $55.7 billion on their pets in 2013 and is on track to spend close to $60 billion this year according to a report from AP:

[The U.S.]spent an all-time high of $55.7 billion on their pets in last year and spending will creep close to $60 billion this year, the president and CEO of the American Pet Products Association told buyers and exhibitors at the Global Pet Expo in Orlando, Fla. Overall pet spending has not dipped since record-keeping started, according to APPA, based in Greeenwich, Conn.

The biggest part of spending in 2013 — $21.57 billion — went for food — a lot of it more expensive, healthier grub. The not-for-profit trade association has been tracking industry figures since 1996, when total pet spending was just $21 billion. Adjusted for inflation, that’s $31.3 billion.

The humanization of our pets started about 20 years ago, Vetere said in a telephone interview. As people made pets more important parts of their families, manufacturers introduced products that, in the beginning, helped the animals make their move from the backyard to the front room.



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Paul Woodrum

We have two little tail wagers and a visit to the vet or groomer makes me clutch my credit card.

David Curtis

Makes sense to me. I have 5 rescue animals, 2 of whom are on medicine and 2 are on specialty food. Some of this has to do with advances in medicine and some of it has to do with an understanding that people, like me, care about our companion animals.

I guess what bothers me about this article is the lack of context. Yes, I spend a lot more on my pets than I would like, but I also tithe and spend a lot of my time in social justice ministry. To me, this is not an either/or proposition, but can be a both/and.

Ann Fontaine

Briony: I posted this statistic because I was curious about what people thought of this statistic – you are reading more into the item than I meant.


I do not see how attempting to shame people does anything but irritate. Positive discussions are much more productive rather than starting from a point of finger wagging. Perhaps a discussion of how caring for rescue animals is an act of kindness would be more beneficial than the clear implication that such $ “should” be spent elsewhere. This just smacks of bemoaning the cost of some perfumed oil…


Briony Bradbury (added by editor)

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Michael Russell

And we spent about $160 bn on Christmas and other concurrent religious holidays. What does it mean that as a nation we refused during the bush years to contribute $25 bn a year to ending poverty. but could spend $179 bn a year on the holidays?

We could end extreme poverty, but choose Christmas lights instead. Discuss

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