In 2010, pet owners spent $18.4 billion on feeding their animals. But new data shows those owners are becoming more concerned about what's in the food.
Fresh pet food contains many ingredients pet owners would buy for themselves, like real meat and vegetables, but is designed specifically for the nutritional requirements of pets.
"It has all the actual ingredients that you would get from a grocery store," Petco general manager Doug Pulliam told 9NEWS. "It actually has bison, it has some beef, and it has spinach, berries and pomegranate. It's completely cooked for the dog and all you would have to do is come into the store, purchase this, and it even gives you a chart on how much to feed per pound."
Pet owners are buying into the trend. Fresh pet products are the fastest growing sector of pet food sales. Natural pet product retail sales are projected to hit $2.5 billion in 2012. That's up from $1.3 billion in 2007.
However, retailers warn that pet owners will spend more on fresh pet food products than they would on regular pet food.
"With these products you will be using more food," Pulliam said. "But with this you're not going to get any grains but you're going to get a lot of the nutrients the dog actually needs. So he's not going to gain weight, he's not going to lose weight, he's actually going to be the right weight."
For more information on natural and fresh pet food products please watch the video above.
(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)