Brits have been spoiling their furry companions with treats over lockdown, sending sales surging, new data reveals.
Sales of branded treats such as Dreamies and Pedigree have skyrocketed from the date of the UK’s first coronavirus case in February to the partial lifting of lockdown 12 weeks later, with Dreamies and Pedigree growing 12.9% and 11.8% year on year respectively in the 12 weeks ending 16 May 2020 [Nielsen].
Indeed, pet treating occasions on the whole have risen 12% in the weeks following lockdown from 23 March as Brits spent more time at home with pets, according to a new report by Mars Petcare.
Similarly, Lily’s Kitchen said it had reported an uptick in sales of its treats as shoppers turned to “pet parenthood”, said UK sales director Jack Rutherford.
“Pet treats are the perfect way to bond with a new pet, and our own research revealed 57% of consumers treat their pets ‘just because’, so it’s no surprise to see sales in this area remain strong,” he added.
Outside of treats, the wider petfood and litter market has also seen a sales increase of 3.4% [Nielsen].
It comes as breeders and pet homes reported “huge demand” for cats and dogs as Brits sought to ease the isolation of lockdown.
Mars Petcare UK category and marketing director Nick Foster said it “makes sense” that shoppers have sought to ease the strain of lockdown by treating their pets.
“Treating is a way of strengthening the bond we have with out pets, rewarding good behaviour and looking after their health needs,” he added.
Mars Petcare is now forecasting compound annual growth of 2.4% over the next five years as a result of more people getting pets and the move to more home-working.