The popularity of supplements such as glucosamine, calcium and probiotics is increasing in human medicine as consumers become more aware of preventive health care. According to a report published by Zion Medical Research, the global dietary supplement market was valued at $132.6 billion in 2016 and is expected to nearly double — or better — by 2022.
While these numbers show the trend in preventive human medicine, they’re also a sign of what’s to come in preventive animal medicine. The research firm Packaged Facts reported that one-third of dog-owning U.S. households and one-fifth of cat households purchased nutritional supplements for the pet in 2017 — a market estimated at nearly $1.5 billion. Pet supplement sales are growing by about 3 to 5 percent annually.
It’s safe to say that consumers of all kinds have growing awareness of the health and financial benefits of preventive medicine. But how often do clients come in to your practice and tell you, “I looked it up online and Google told me …”?
To be sure, some of them are researching pet supplements and nutraceuticals. Then they travel to the nearest retailer or click online to purchase a product they think will do the trick for their dog or cat.