One of the stranger trends in recent years has been the rise in Christmas presents for pets. We don’t mean a tasty dog biscuit or a squeaky toy, we mean the desire to spend on your pet like he was a needy human being. According to market research firm Mintel, “People are increasingly treating their pets as humans, relying on them for companionship and gaining a sense of fulfilment….. They want their pets to feel cared-for, comfortable and mentally stimulated. So there is driving demand for added-value products, often mirroring mainstream human styling and healthcare trends. As a result people are prepared to pay more for their pet care products and to replace them more often.” According to a survey of pet owners in 2015, an average of nearly £200 a year is spent on clothes for their pets – that’s more than I spend on my wardrobe. In fact outfits are the second highest for cat owners, after food. £264 is the average annual spend on presents for pets but 88% of respondents admit to spending up to £50 on extravagant presents for their pets.
In the last 5 years spending on pet gifts has grown by over £286 million. If you are looking for Christmas presents for pets, £450 can get your cat the Litter-Robot III Open Air Automatic Self-Cleaning Litter Box. In the USA, for just $3,000 you can get 22k Gold-Thread Pet Mattress. According to The Independent, last week saw a Christmas market for dogs coming to London offering accessories and festive treats with the adorable name Santa Paws. That’s one good thing about the pet gift trend, it’s generated a lot of good puns. Pawsecco is available. Downton Tabby is a feline based parody on the popular TV series, whilst the Yoga Dogs features dogs in varying yoga poses. We reported earlier about a company selling pyjamas for dogs which enable you to have matching pyjamas with your pet. What else can you get Fido? How about a personalised “Reserved” dog cushion for £35, or a personalised dog lead holder for £19.95. We will shortly be bringing out a onesie for your pet rabbit called a Bunzee. Only joking, but we are thinking about a dogs clothing line called Togs for Dogs – are you in?