The first wave of results from a new study by Brakke Consulting Inc. documents substantial changes in veterinary care and the purchase of pet products during the COVID-19 pandemic
The “COVID-19 Impact on Pet Care” study is based on a survey of 1,000 pet owners. Brakke Consulting is conducting the study in three rounds, and the first round was launched in the first week of May. This first round found that nearly half of the US pet owners had been financially affected by the pandemic, either due to job loss or declining income.
Since the early 2020, 21% of pet owners had added a pet, but most of those pets were purchased in January and February. The largest number of pets was acquired in January and the number has been decreasing each month. Younger people, under the age of 45, were more likely to add a pet than older people.
Nearly 40% of pet owners had canceled vet appointments due to the pandemic. The pet owners who tried to make an appointment but were unable to do so said the clinic was closed or were only taking emergencies. “Keep in mind that a lot of people had appointments with the vet,” John Volk, senior consultant at Brakke, told JAVMA News. There were also telemedicine appointments.”
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