Chewy and Petco have recognized the importance of pet health care in their long-term growth and profitability. The surge in pet adoptions during the pandemic has led to increased spending on pet health care, making it a crucial component of the pet industry. Both retailers have invested heavily in expanding their pet health care offerings, including insurance, and telehealth services. With the pet health care market projected to continue growing, Chewy and Petco are well-positioned to maintain their success in the booming pet market.
Chewy, founded in 2011, has become the largest pet health company in the U.S. and is expanding its consumables revenues through partnerships with veterinarians. Petco, on the other hand, has focused on setting up veterinary hospitals in its brick-and-mortar stores, with a significant increase in the number of hospitals and the hiring of veterinarians. Both companies are betting on pet owners’ continued prioritization of their pets’ health and well-being.
While the initiatives in pet health care are still in the early stages and require significant investment, they hold promise for long-term growth and profitability. The demand for pet goods has led to increased sales, but there has been a decline in discretionary and hard goods categories. Competition in the hard goods market has also increased, posing challenges for Chewy and Petco. However, the focus on pet health care offers more avenues for growth and longevity, as pet owners prioritize the health needs of their furry companions.
Both companies recognize the potential in pet insurance and the opportunity to capture market share from independent veterinary providers. Chewy has focused on virtual telehealth capabilities, but regulations have posed challenges in some locations. Petco, with its physical stores and veterinarians, has an advantage in providing in-person services. However, profitability for Petco’s veterinary hospitals will take time.
Overall, the expansion into pet health care aligns with the growing focus on wellness and convenience for pet owners. As consumers increasingly prioritize their own well-being, extending that lifestyle to their pets makes sense. Chewy and Petco are well-positioned to cater to this trend and continue to thrive in the pet industry.