2021 Economic impact of the U.S. pet sector

National Impact

The care and companionship of pets is integral to not only the emotional and physical health and well-being of people, but also to the strength and stability of our economy.

New data through 2021 demonstrates that the U.S. pet sector contributes $260.5 billion directly and indirectly to the U.S. economy.

This is an increase of 18% from $221 billion in 2015.

U.S. Pet Sector Economic Impact


  • $260.5 Billion

    Total Economic Output

  • $174 Billion

    Pet sector contribution to annual gross domestic product


  • 2.78 Million

    U.S. jobs are directly and indirectly linked to pets


  • $23.4 Billion

    Public revenues generated by consumer expenditures on pets from local, state and federal taxes

State Economic Impact

The below infographics reflect 2021 data. Click a state to download its economic impact infographic.

If printing on a local printer, adjust the settings to “fit to page” for optimal results.

A small brown dog eating food from a metal bowl.

U.S. households spent
$93.95 billion on their pets.

Pet food, including treats, is the largest expense for most pet owners.

Americans spent $50 billion on pet food and treats.

Pet Spending

$50 Billion

Pet Food & Treats

$29.8 Billion

Supplies, Live Animals & OTC Medicine

$34.3 Billion

Vet Care & Product Sales

$9.5 Billion

Other Services

Pet spending and ownership statistics source: APPA

Pet Ownership

84.9 million

Households in the U.S. have at least one pet.
70%, or about two-thirds, of American households own some type of pet.

186 million

Americans own 186 million dogs and cats.
54% of U.S. households own of a dog and
35% own a cat.

23 million

U.S. households brought home a new pet between spring of 2019 and summer of 2021.

70% of American households own at least one pet

  • Dog54%
  • Cat35%
  • Freshwater Fish9%
  • Bird8%
  • Small Mammal5%
  • Reptile4%
  • Saltwater Fish2%

It Takes a Community

Support pet care, join the Pet Advocacy Network.

We depend on the support of the responsible pet care community to ensure that pet lovers have opportunities to enjoy the companionship of healthy pets, and that the priorities of pet care businesses are protected now and in the future.

Essential News & Alerts

Keep on top of pet-related media coverage and Pet Advocacy Network news with our members-only daily and quarterly newsletters.

Shape Policy

Join our committees and make connections to lawmakers directing the future of pet care policy.

Pet Care’s Watchdog

Support our work tracking and taking action on issues that could directly impact your business.