The character of modern Japanese homes and lifestyles is leading to the increasing prevalence of in-house pets, which is, in turn, driving demand for pet products such as cat litter and toilet sheets. Furthermore, the general rise in consumer hygiene-consciousness is expanding the range of demand to include products such as body towel sheets and nappies.
The pet humanisation trend is boosting the amount of money spent on pets across categories. Pet products that place an emphasis on design, such as products like cages and gates that match room interiors, are performing well in the Japanese market.
Social networking sites such as Instagram are playing an increasingly central role in consumers’ lives, with posting pictures of pets becoming increasingly popular. As a result, pet owners have displayed a growing interest in fashion for their pets, with demand for pet clothes rising towards the end of the review period.
With an increasing cat population and a growing prevalence of in-house pets, manufacturers are targeting areas such as cat litter. In May 2018, Unicharm, launched a new cat toilet, Deo Toilet Kaiteki Wide, which has a broader area than other similar products, as well as a taller wall to prevent urine from splattering onto the floor.
DCM HD’s new cat sand, launched under the PB brand, targets Japanese consumers’ concern with hygiene and smells, as well as their growing environmental-awareness. Made from okara (soy pulp left over from the production of tofu and soy milk), the sand is in line with the broader demand for natural products and does not contain chemicals considered to be harmful to human health or the environment, allowing it to be returned to the soil after use.
While Japanese consumers have been relatively slow to embrace connectivity and the Internet of Things, smart products are gradually gaining attention. With consumer lifestyles becoming increasingly busy and a rise in the number of single-person households, there is a growing demand for products that can both keep pets entertained and maintain pet owners’ contact with their animals.
Due to the decline in new ownership of pets, and the fact that consumers are focussed on maintaining the health of their pets through higher quality food, pets are expected to continue ageing over the forecast period. This will lead to potential growth in pet products specialised for senior pets.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Pet Care market research database.