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The business of animals came into the economy by surprise, what was once a deep love for the care and well-being of

individual pets sparked a huge industry.

This unique industry has created a lot of fields that now offers multiple franchises with a large customer base.

The classic American family usually involves two parents, couple kids and an animal for a picture perfect snapshot.

In fact, approximately 60% of households within the U.S. have at least one pet. No matter what the family dynamic, a lot

of members recognize a pet as a family member.

The care and maintenance of a pet, as well as the product line invented for the pet population has increased over the last

decade and encompassed many areas of business.pets2


These facilities are specific to pet ownership and adoption. Of course, all of the necessities can be purchased like

food, cages, kennels and travel carriers but the pet industry now adheres to the many needs and wants of animals. Including

toys, harnesses, cat strings, bird mirrors,fish rocks, even clothing. It’s a complete department store on its own.

Costumers want to shop with a store specified for their pets, rather than pick up a bag of food from the grocer. Their

needs are specific and they care deeply for their animals, therefore they want to go somewhere that specializes in all facets of pet ownership.

Walls of pet stores are lined with aquariums with every type of fish, cages with bunnies and aisles with numerous

choices of products. Plus most stores include associates who are well versed in their field, helping costumers establish a

loyal relationship with the brand.

These stores have become well established and recognized throughout the nation giving new franchisors a huge client base

and well-marketed industry.

From a negative standpoint, some pet stores selling animals have come under controversy because consumers are

concerned with puppy or kitten mills, which are criticized for breeding animals without concern for their welfare.

Therefore, some stores have stopped the sale of animals and focused on retail products and pet supplies.

Even with criticism in 2003 only 38% of stores claimed to not sell animals and according to the American Pet Products

Manufacturers Association live animal sales reached $1.6 billion in 2004.

Specialty foods are a growing product within the industry and 43 % of consumers admitted to only buying these products

in specific pet retail stores, according to National Pet Owners Survey.


Although grooming can be offered in pet shops, industries focusing directly on the maintenance and priming of animals have

been extremely successful. The growth within the industry is due to the increase in pet ownership but also an increase in spending per pet. Americans now spend $48 billion a year on their pets, which is double the amount spent on pets a

decade ago.

Grooming has become an important part of animal ownership. Not only are cats and dogs getting a bath and their claws cut,

the field has grown to include all-inclusive spas and pet massage.

People want the best for their animals and they are willing to dish out the cash to keep man’s best friend happier than ever.

This is usually an easily adjustable franchise for business owners, offering locations that are adaptable and run by

owners. In fact pet pampering is not only expected, but has become the norm. The American pet owner is spending an

average of $107 annually on grooming.

It’s also a continuous service, which keeps costumers returning.

Grooming can also adhere to the specifications of dog breeds. There can be a lot of maintenance involved in helping

dogs be preserved to the characteristics of the breed and grooming locations can help maintain those requirements.


Although everyone’s furry friends are a part of their family, people have to travel or leave their homes and they want the best of the best for their pets.

With travel so easily accessible, people need to leave for vacation or business and they want a loyal and trusted brand to care for their loved ones.

Outside of traveling, owners are seeking daily care while they are away at work.

This type of care can include walking, which a lot of owners are unable to upkeep with their busy schedules. A lot of pet

owners are working day jobs and want their pets to be entertained, walked and kept active.

Pet spending had remained resilient through the recession; actually consumers are spending even more on the pets

and day care is an integral part of pet ownership.

Again this field has expanded to suit a lot of high-end needs of many consumers. Doggie hotels, daytime guarding,

adventure walks, playing off leash, are only some of the services offered by day cares, as well as grooming and spa


The simple maintenance of pets has turned into venues of opportunities for business owners, day cares can offer many services dedicated to the variety of needs for such a huge customer base.


There is a concern for the overall health of animals. Health obsessed Americans like to extend their concerns to their pets. There is weight controlled food, organic and gluten-free choices, vitamins and many exercise options.

However, the need to influence and train dog behavior has been a concern for much longer and it has become a specialized

form of business.

Of course it’s hard not to assume the pet industry only involves cats and dog, but there are fish, rodents, reptiles, birds and most importantly to training, horses.

Dogs and horses are the top customers for training and it has extended past the classic sit or stay but involves a lot more

expectations on animals.

There is training for dog and horse shows that can be a high-end business venture, however may require a lot of knowledge

and experience within that area.

A lot of dogs are used in therapy, including seeing-eye dogs, seizure dogs and senior care. There are police and fire dogs all of which require specialized training as well.

With every breed of dog, comes a possibility of guidance that would involve a team of experts and pets can be taught to

change their behavior and be better suited to a family’s needs.

Domesticated dogs are trained in doggy school and even have to surpass specific classes in order to graduate.

This type of franchise is a great opportunity for the pet lover, allowing people to mix pleasure with business.

There is a lot of variety within the field but also a lot of crossover. Franchisees can be very specific in the types of services or products they offer, or they can satisfy a variety of customer needs under one roof.

One thing is for certain, the pet franchising industry is not a dog eat dog world, but rather a guarantee. It keeps

increasing year after year and so does the pet population and the customer base. One could even say this field truly is the cat’s pajamas.

About the author: After receiving an English Degree, followed by a Journalism Diploma, Gina became a freelance journalist in 2008.

She has worked as a reporter and in communications, focusing on social media.

She currently works as a community information officer with Epilepsy Society, while pursuing her writing career at the same time.

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