Last Updated on September 12, 2023 by Fumipets
GenZ Kids Embrace Pets: A Growing Trend in Pet Adoption
In recent years, there has been an undeniable surge in pet adoption, with pet-care businesses flourishing as a result. Anushka Iyer, the visionary Founder and CEO of Wiggles, sheds light on this heartwarming trend and shares her inspiring journey as a ‘pet-preneur’ with Business Today.
New Delhi, March 11, 2023 – The bond between GenZ kids and their four-legged friends has never been stronger. Today, more and more households are welcoming dogs and cats into their homes, enriching their lives in countless ways.
The Pet Revolution: GenZ’s Love for Furry Companions
“Young Indians are adopting pets at an accelerated rate than the previous generations. This has also led to the need for overall demand for pet care, grooming, and health facilities. I have been very fond of animals all my life, and it was easy to enter this space when I wanted to venture out as an entrepreneur,” says Anushka Iyer, Founder and CEO of Wiggles.
While the surge in pet adoption is heartening, it also brings to light a concerning issue: pet abandonment. Iyer observes, “Lack of knowledge about pet care and high expenses involved in maintaining them leads to a high number of pet abandonments each year in India.” It’s a challenge she took head-on with Wiggles, aiming to create a full-service ecosystem around pet care to make it seamless for pet parents to provide the best for their beloved furry companions.
Wiggles: Where Love and Care Unite
Wiggles, founded by Anushka Iyer in 2018, provides comprehensive services including behavior training, nutrition, grooming, and wellness support. What started as a modest team of 30 has grown into a robust 250-member family, all dedicated to enhancing the lives of pets and their owners.
The Flourishing Pet Care Industry
The pet care industry is evolving rapidly, encompassing food, treats, veterinary services, wellness, pharmacy, and grooming. Notably, the segments experiencing the most significant growth are food, treats, and veterinary services. India is witnessing a heartening trend where pets are increasingly being considered part of the family. The rise of pet-friendly spaces such as parks, cafes, and restaurants has made it more convenient for pet owners to enjoy their companions’ company. Wiggles stands as a testament to the evolving needs of the pet parent community.
A Booming Market: India’s Pet Care Industry
According to Market Decipher, the Indian pet care market was valued at around Rs 74,000 crore in 2022 and is projected to reach a staggering Rs 2,10,000 crore by 2032, with a remarkable CAGR of over 19 percent from 2022 to 2032.
“The major growth drivers for this industry are food, healthcare, grooming, and accessories. The pet food market in India is estimated to be around Rs 2,500 crore, with dog food accounting for approximately 80 percent of the market share. This market is expected to reach Rs 10,770 crore by 2025,” shares Iyer.
A Global Phenomenon: The Pet-Care Market
The global pet-care market is also experiencing exponential growth. According to the Grand View Research report, the global pet care market was valued at $150.67 billion in 2021 and is anticipated to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.1 percent from 2022 to 2030.
Iyer adds, “The American Pet Products Association reports that approximately 85 million households in the United States own a pet, with pet ownership rates rising from 56 percent to 68 percent over the past three decades.”
From Angel Funding to Ambitious Goals
Wiggles, which raised $1 million in angel funding just a year after its inception in 2019, continued its success story by securing $5.5 million in their pre-series A funding round in October 2021. As Anushka Iyer reveals, “We are currently in advanced discussions to raise approximately $20 million for our Series A round. We have set an ambitious goal to become a $35 million company by 2025 and to be present in at least five countries while making a positive impact on the lives of animals throughout India.”
A Call for Responsible Pet Ownership
Despite the surging popularity of pets, Anushka Iyer emphasizes the importance of responsible pet ownership. “Pet adoption is a lifetime commitment, and people should be responsible pet owners, ensuring they have the time and resources to care for their pets properly. Pet ownership is on the rise because they provide companionship, loyalty, reduce stress and anxiety, and contribute to overall mental health,” she passionately asserts.
As GenZ kids and pet lovers across the globe continue to embrace the joys of pet companionship, Anushka Iyer and Wiggles stand as beacons of hope, guiding pet parents towards a brighter, more responsible future with their beloved furry friends.