Pet owners are estimated to spend more than $55 billion on their pets this year, according to the American Pet Product Association. This is up from about $53 billion in 2012, and $50 billion in 2011.
Indeed, a dog’s life is pretty good. In many homes, pets are treated just like family members. Pet owners carefully choose the food their pets eat, and the products they use.
More than half of pet products are purchased by consumers without kids, according to the APPA. This will continue to be a trend, as millennials put off starting a family—opting for pets instead.
Manufacturers are responding with new food, supplies, over-the-and counter medications and other products. Even grain- and gluten-free foods can be easily found on retail shelves.
While national brands dominate, private labels are making a strong impression on dog, cat and other pet lovers.
Store brand pet products are becoming such a dominant force that, for a second year in a row, this year’s PLMA Store Brands show features a Pet Care Pavilion.
The pavilion showcases the latest pet products from supermarket, drug stores, club, convenience stores and mass merchandisers.
PLMA 2013: The Best of the Best 
Among the brands being represented: A&P Preferred Pet; Aldi’s Shep Complete Nutrition: CVS/Caremark’s Pet Central and Walmart’s Ol’ Roy.
I stopped by the pavilion tonight when I registered for the show. While the pavilion doesn’t open until tomorrow, from a distance, it looks like a good variety of brands and products are represented. I will tour the pavilion tomorrow. Look for photos in my upcoming photo gallery.
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