Updated: Sep 6
Canadians love pets. In 2020, more than half of us shared our home with an estimated 16 million dogs and cats.
If your one of those pet owners you've probably noticed pet food prices have been going up.
A bag of treats that cost $9.49 September 2020 might cost $9.99 now. A large bag of dry dog food formulated to relieve dry skin might cost $79.99 in 2021 rather than last Septembers $75.99.
Pet food prices have climbed about 5% to 18% over the last year. Not that big of a deal for some, but if your on a fixed income, like so many pet owners are, it is a big deal
If you spend $1000 a year on pet food that increase could be an additional $180 annually. Obviously the more food your pet eats the higher that number.
Pet owners are not only seeing prices rise, they're experiencing shortages as well.
What's happening? No surprise here. The pandemic.
Initially shortages may have been result of people "stocking up" on pet food because of the lockdowns. Similar to the hoarding of toilet paper.
Ports and production facilities have been temporarily closed because of COVID. Some facilities switched production to manufacturing PPE or hand sanitizer.
You couldn't even rely on the Suez Canal to keep things moving. The freighter that was stuck for about a week last March was just one more disruption.
The pandemic continues to disrupt supply chains around the world. Those disruptions and the rising cost of raw material are pushing manufacturing costs up.
On top of that many retail outlets don't keep a lot of stock on hand. Instead they rely on regular deliveries from suppliers. If there's no warehouse full of stock nearby there's no buffer when the supply chain slows or breaks because of world events. Almost like a perfect storm
Its going to take time to untangle the supply chain.
Meanwhile pet food producers are taking the heat for rising costs.
Insiders defend the industry saying the retail price has gone up because manufacturing costs are up but the profit margin has stayed the same.
Lack of stock has become such an issue one major pet food supplier posts regular "updates" almost like an apology, for its customers.
If all that isn't enough pet ownership is on the rise, trending if you will.
Its been reported Canadians 18 to 24 years old are the most likely to have purchased a pet since the start of the pandemic.
Some reports say pet ownership has increased 18% since COVID.
That's good news for Dogs and Cats in shelters. About half of them are being adopted out.
So, are we cat people or dog people in Canada. The splits almost fifty fifty, but the dogs have a slight lead