The pet care craze is worldwide… even Chinese millennials are getting in on the action!
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The pet care craze is worldwide… even Chinese millennials are getting in on the action!

According to the Chinese Zodiac, 2019 is the year of the pig. But it may as well be the year of the cat, dog, or hamster – because Chinese millennials (just like millennials around the globe) are crazy about their pets. As more environmentally and socially aware millennials have come of age (and, perhaps crucially, failed to match preceding generations’ fertility rates) animal companions are benefiting from the kind of healthcare that used to be reserved for humans. But why single out China? Because the fact that the trend is taking hold there is proof of just how powerful it is globally.

Market-leading animal companion diagnostic tool-maker Idexx Laboratories has seen its share price appreciated by 11% year to date

22 02 idex

Source: Yahoo Finance

If you want to know why a burgeoning pet craze is a big deal in China, consider the following: famines were commonplace in the country until 1961, which meant that animals kept as anything other than food was unthinkable. Following the cultural revolution, Mao’s Communist Party would also have looked askance at pets – if you have enough to feed your dog in a country where people are starving, then clearly, the levelling effect of Communist policy had failed to work.

Even in post-Mao China, elements of anti-pet-sentiment persist. Until the 90s, dogs were viewed as a rabies threat, and canines over 35 cm tall are still not allowed to roam parts of Beijing.

Of course, at the head of this trend (worldwide, as well as in China) is the millennial generation. They don’t remember Mao, were born as the boom began, and live vastly different lives to their parents. They have disposable income, and, like millennials the world over, they are lukewarm on marriage and kids. That’s why the country still faces an aging population crisis despite relaxing the one-child policy. What fills that spot that previous generations reserved for children and families? Pets.

America’s still the big player in pet spending, but it’s clearly become a worldwide phenomenon. Grand View Research says that, but 2025, the market will be worth $202.6 billion. As the global market leader, IDEXX Laboratories is perfectly positioned to capture that growth.

Disclosure

Dominion holds IDEXX Laboratories in its Global Trends Luxury Fund.


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