The pet market: what does it represent in France?


5 billion euros! This is what the pet market in France would represent. 1500 euros per year for a dog, 1000 for a cat: Whether they are furry, feathered, scaled or many other possibilities, it is a constantly growing market that the crisis has not slowed down, well on the contrary, and for good reason, almost one in two French households has at least one pet. As for the world market, it is estimated at almost 100 billion euros! Something to make your head spin. And it is not finished: by 2026, the American economic magazine Forbes promises an evolution of 23% more. What does it represent and why is it growing so fast and so strong? Our responses.

Brief inventory of pets

There are no less than 76 million pets in France, more than the number of inhabitants. This market is booming with owners who skimp less and less on the quality of their animal’s daily life, ready to invest the time and the budget necessary for its full development.

We love them like cats and dogs!

The cat goes of course in pole position, without much surprise. Our feline friends take the lead in the market, present in 45% of households that own pets. There are 14 million in France. The dogs follow closely, which there are still 8 million in France, present in one in four households.

NACs

Have you ever heard of NACs? These are the New Pets, which are actually all pets other than cats and dogs. We will present rodents (rabbit, mouse, rat, hamster, guinea pig, chinchilla, gerbil, dwarf pig, etc.), birds, aquarium and terrarium animals (iguana, chameleon, insect, arthropod, snake ), and backyard (hen, peacock, duck, goose, turkey). Let’s take the time for a short break on our friends the hens who are more and more in the sights of animal lovers. They represent 5% of domesticated animals in France.

The various branches of the market

The average annual expenditure for a pet, all taken together, is around 800 €. What are the expense items?

The food

It is obviously the first item of animal expenditure. Overall, the animal feed market weighs more than 3 billion euros in France, for a monthly expenditure of between 50 and 80 € per owner. A multitude of brands, a multitude of flavors, health benefits for animals: the animal food market is exploding.

Hygiene and health

Insurance dedicated to pets, compulsory vaccination visits, unfortunately including some health contingencies: the budget dedicated to the hygiene and health of pets is in second position. It is estimated at around € 500 per year per household owner. Note that in France, only 5% of pets are insured. This practice is not yet integrated into our mores, unlike our neighbors in Great Britain in particular.

Accessories and equipment

Toys, walking accessories, cozy nest or other, the animal accessories market in France represents 500 million euros.

Other

Other expenses can be added to these three big items: training and education, as well as guarding are the main ones.

The confinement effect

The health crisis that we have been going through since early 2020 has obviously caused many short and long-term impacts, both from an economic, demographic, social or ecological point of view, regardless of the sector. If for some, it had and will still have sometimes catastrophic consequences, it will have enabled others to promote their development and their rise to power. This is the case with the animal market.

New ways of life

As we know, many people have opted for sometimes radical life changes. Some have left the city to settle in the countryside when others have slammed the door of their work for a professional reorientation, and between the two we will unfortunately count the explosion of divorces but also the scramble for marriages. These are just as many changes in habits that promote lifestyles much more focused on well-being, good living together and sharing. The French have turned to what they could perhaps sulk a little before, such as bike rides, the discovery of nature, enjoying its interior, meeting more often with relatives. Thus, for two years, the adoption of animals, all channels combined, has increased by 15%, which all these upheavals and questioning of our priorities have encouraged.

Telecommuting

While not all of them have necessarily re-questioned and revolutionized their lives with which they were not fully satisfied, many have had to at least adapt their professional practices. Teleworking in particular has developed a lot, to the point of integrating it into customary ways of doing things, to be perpetuated even after the crisis. More presence at home has logically favored the adoption of pets, where previously it was perhaps more difficult to envisage.

A return to quality rather than quantity

Still in the same perspective of having learned to refocus on the essential and on more natural and simple choices, the French are turning more to quality for their own well-being, as well as that of their animal. Quality food, origin of the food, quality of the care ranges, walking and transport equipment: they invest in the sustainable, eco-responsible, organic, with a concern for quality.

Adoption vs abandonment: the cool kiss double effect

Unfortunately, this flourishing market is marred by the number of abandonments which explode in France. France holds the European record for the number of dropouts with no less than 100,000 per year. Animal shelters are overwhelmed, especially by the influx from the pound, that is to say animals wandering in the street, collected and then brought to the refuge after a week spent in the pound while waiting for the masters.

Compulsive buying has crept into this pet market in recent years, which usually results from weariness and disinterest, like many over-shopping. The Internet also favors this phenomenon, exposing all types of pets such as a bunch of TV channels or the facing of clothes.

When the law intervenes

The legislator condemns the abandonment of animals of an act of cruelty, which can lead to up to 2 years of imprisonment and a € 30,000 fine for the perpetrator. The law against animal abuse adopted on November 18, 2021 will prohibit, from 2024, the sale of pets in animal shops and will strictly regulate the online sale of pets, which will then be reserved only for shelters and breeders.