Pets — the chic new way to measure growing wealth in emerging markets
Pets — the chic new proxy for growing wealth in emerging markets: Pet ownership in developing countries is on the rise, which according to the FT’s Steve Johnson is indicative of a growing middle class in emerging markets, as well as changing lifestyles and attitudes towards cats and dogs. Dog ownership has grown 51% since 2003 to 243 mn, while cat ownership has risen 49% to 126 mn. “In poor countries people are more focused on a chicken that will lay eggs or a pig that might eat their waste. It’s only as they get a little bit richer that that changes. Pets might be seen as a relative luxury purchase,” said Renaissance Capital’s chief economist Charles Robertson. This comes as the rate for pet ownership in the developed world fell, growing a modest 5% for both cats and dogs since 2003. The development is opening up doors for the pet industry in EMs, says Johnson.