The Global Pet Food Market was estimated at a value of about USD 78.76 billion in 2017. The industry is forecasted to register a CAGR of 5.03%, during the forecast period.
Rapid urbanization and development of economic and professional constructs are the main reasons for the growing trend of nuclear families. The increasing urban nature of the society, which results in separation from farm animals and nature, is stimulating the desire to bring pets home. The market for pet food closely shadows the market for pets. The social comfort, company, security, and the aesthetic sense offered by pets are the main reasons cited for owning a pet.
The growth of one-person households and decline of families, have also led to seek pet companionship. People belonging to these social segments are a major boost for the market, as they tend to humanize pets to a great extent, thereby taking extra care of their diet and wellness.
The other aspect of nuclear families is the increase in the population of elderly people living alone. Reduced interaction with family and financial stability are factors, which promote pet adoption and their proper care, among the aging population.
Source: Insurance Information Institute
Various pet foods and related ingredients can be a major cause of skin diseases and allergies, in pets. Humanizing pets and indiscriminate feeding of available food products are the major reasons that lead to improper animal health and diseases. For example – cats are 100% carnivores and they lack the enzymes in their stomach to digest complex carbohydrates, like corn, wheat, soy, and other vegetable matter. Though dogs are a little tolerant to vegetation, excessive amounts of corn or wheat can cause allergies. Food allergies/intolerance among pets can be caused by a reaction to a particular ingredient, mostly by protein products, like beef, milk products, and fish.
Hence, safe and suitable pet products should be selected carefully. Other than corn and wheat, some of the other products that should not be a part of animal food are – soy, BHA/BHT, ethoxyquin, propylin glycol, and some by-products. Adding these products only worsen the health of the animal, and results in subsequent diseases. To aggravate the scenario, there are no strong regulations in the United States on the usage of these ingredients in pet foods. These animals are exposed to harmful chemicals and ingredients, which may cause severe diseases in pets.
Controlling the negative impact of food in the form of diseases and allergies is essential for the growth of the pet food industry. The major challenge here is to find and avoid the food ingredients responsible for skin and/or gastrointestinal conditions, allergies, and diseases.
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