NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Raise your hand if you post cute puppy and kitten photos on Twitter (TWTR) and Instagram. Well, pet selfies are about to explode as a result of the nicer weather, so be ready on the retweet and like buttons. Since you clearly love your pet, you should probably know about a boom underway in pet vitamins.
Can you blame vitamin makers for seeking to cash in on the pet humanization trend? I mean there are now wearable devices for pets in the attempt to bring their unknown thoughts and feelings to life! But, what the vitamin makers want to tap into, alas, is growing concern by pet owners on rising healthcare costs for furry loved ones.
According to the largest pet insurance company in the U.S., Veterinary Pet Insurance, the average cost to treat a dog with a non-cancerous skin mass was $342 in 2013. To treat a cat for lymphoma, the average cost was $2,004. These average costs shed light on why the pet insurance industry is poised to grow to $900 million annually by 2015 from $650 million or so currently.
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Here is a rundown on where to spot the pet vitamin boom in action, with one large retailer surprisingly not participating:
- GNC (GNC - Get Report) alone has 23 variations of dog multivitamins.
- Vitamin Shoppe (VSI - Get Report) has a total of 131 products deemed pet vitamins on its Web site, addressing things such as breath control and mood imbalances.
- By typing in pet vitamins on Petsmart's (PETM) Web site, you are led to 200 choices.
- Walmart (WMT - Get Report) has 37 products in the category.
- Oddly, Target (TGT - Get Report), with its higher income customer, has no pet vitamins for sale on its Web site or in its stores.
Target, where is the pet love?
-- By Brian Sozzi CEO of Belus Capital Advisors, analyst to TheStreet.
This article represents the opinion of a contributor and not necessarily that of TheStreet or its editorial staff.