It's no secret that the pet industry has grown tremendously over the last 10 years. Pet owners are spending more money than ever on their canine companions. Not only are we spending more money, but we're also pushing for companies to create unique products to meet every dog-related need.
The biggest dog companies in the world are meeting those needs and then some.
Table of Contents
- Top Dog Food Companies
- Top Dog Toy Companies
- Top Dog Supplies Companies
- Top Vet Care Companies
- Common Questions about the Biggest Companies in Pet Food and Other Pet Products
According to the American Pet Products Association, $95.7 billion was spent on pets in the United States in 2019, and $99 billion is estimated for 2020.
The specific breakdown of this spending looks like this:
- Food – $36.9 billion
- Supplies and over-the-counter Medicine – $19.2 billion
- Vet Care – $29.3 billion
- Live animal purchases – $2.1 billion
- Pet Services (grooming, boarding, etc.) – $5.76 billion
Here's how rapidly this industry has been growing: In 2006, Americans spent just $38.5 billion on their pets, and in 1996 that number was only $21 billion.
We spent more on just the top dog foods alone in 2016 than we spent on all pet products a mere 20 years ago.
But who's profiting the most in the pet industry? Let's take a look at some of the biggest dog companies in the world and the products that they manufacture.
Top Dog Food Companies
Unless you've been living and shopping in a cave, you will certainly have heard of each of pet food's big four corporations. Between these big four, they own almost all of the best-known dog food brands.
1. Mars Pet, Inc.
The largest of the big pet food corporations is Mars Pet, Inc.
Mars own household dog food names, most of which are very familiar to pet owners in the U.S. and are some of the most commonly purchased and recommended, such as these popular dog food brands below:
- James Wellbeloved
- Royal Canin
- Royal Canin Veterinary Diets
2. Nestlé Purina PetCare
The second-largest pet food manufacturer is Nestlé Purina.
The name probably rings a bell more for its brand of chocolate.
However, Nestle owns and manufactures large dog food brands like Bakers, Bonio, Winalot, Beta, ProPlan, Beneful, Purina One, and Purina Veterinary Diets.
3. Hill's Pet Nutrition
The third-largest dog food company is the famous Hill's Pet Nutrition.
Hill's Pet Nutrition is also home to two of the largest vet recommended and vet-supplied dog food products worldwide.
These are Hills Science Plan and Hills Prescription Diets, both of which are often recommended by veterinarians.
4. Spectrum Brands/United Pet Group
Finally, the fourth largest pet food company in the world is the lesser-known Spectrum.
Spectrum is home to two huge dog food brands very well known and respected in the US – Eukanuba and Iams.
How They Became World Leaders in Pet Food
Today, these world-leading largest dog food manufacturers can afford expensive TV advertising, unlike many smaller and newer pet food brands.
They can also afford the terms imposed by supermarkets. Thus, they receive the most exposure. They also spend millions on inventing new dog food formulas.
This is probably why, even if you’ve never owned a dog, you can still recognize some of the names in the above lists.
On their journey to becoming one of the big four dog food manufacturers, these pet food companies have managed to buy out the most successful independent brands to expand their product range.
Adding To The Brand
They continue to buy new pet food brands almost monthly.
Together, pet food companies have also effectively invented veterinary diets and now controversial prescription dog food brands.
By creating dog food directly for vets, 9 out of 10 vets now recommend foods from one of these top four companies.
That is not to say that every brand of vet-recommended dog food must always be bad since companies spend insane amounts of money on testing what works best for a dog's health.
However, except for a few well-respected dog food brands, a lot of them are low quality.
With a large expenditure on advertising, supermarket special offers, and retailer incentives, you might be right in thinking that less money is spent on ingredients in their dog foods.
Depending on which type of dog food you're currently thinking one, one look through the ingredient lists of two of the biggest dog food brands, Pedigree and Bakers.
Clearly shows that effort is pumped more into the marketing of these dog foods and is a major credit to the brand's success over the quality of the products.
Top Dog Toy Companies
Dog toys have changed over the last few years. There are thousands of great toys for dogs to choose from, and most pet owners prefer to buy their dog's various things to play with.
Whether your dog likes rope toys, stuffed toys, or treat-dispensing toys, you've surely heard of these large companies who made huge leaps in this industry area.
Unlike dog food companies, manufacturers of dog toys usually have a much better reputation among dog owners.
Mostly it's because their products aren't consumable, and the quality of the dog toy is directly related to how popular the brand is.
5. Mammoth Pet Products
Mammoth Pet Products has been a leading innovator and manufacturer of premium dog toys since 1995.
The company is passionate about developing toys that dogs love.
With over 300 items, they offer many puzzle toys and some of the best interactive dog toys – from squeak toys to tug ropes – for all breeds and sizes.
KONG is one of the fastest-growing dog toy companies today, manufacturing some of the best high-quality KONG pet toys and gaining solid respect from dog owners worldwide.
KONG’s founder, Joe Markham, loved his retired police dog, Fritz, but did not love his destructive chewing habits.
Fritz loved to crunch on rocks, sticks, and other harmful items, causing his teeth to wear down. His need for stimulation and play was not being met.
One day, while working on a VW Bus, Joe began throwing out car parts to Fritz to lure him away from the rocks.
Fritz was immediately taken with a rubber suspension part and dropped it in Joe’s lap to play. The erratic bounce and toughness of the rubber inspired Joe.
Now, KONG Company creates its own proprietary, pet-safe, built-to-chew rubber dog toys. Durable, fun, and safe to chew, dogs and owners love KONG.
The company claims that their toys “are the best of the best in quality, originality, variety, safety, and value.” KONG toys are popular across the globe and are stocked in stores across Europe, America, Australia, and Asia.
Petmate is passionate about pets and their families and is considered a world leader of solutions and excellence in the pet industry.
The Petmate company created the first dog kennel at their home office in Arlington, Texas, 50 years ago.
What started with kennels has grown to encompass a full line of innovative and best-selling dog toys.
They continue to produce many products in the USA at their manufacturing facilities in Arlington, Texas.
The Petmate manufacturing facility has been given the Edison Green Award for being “a leader in globally recognizing, honoring and fostering innovation and innovators to create a positive impact in the world.”
They produce some of the most popular dog toys, including toys from:
- JW Dog
You've probably owned one of their dog toys at one time or another.
Top Dog Supplies Companies
More than $14 billion was spent on pet supplies and over-the-counter medicine last year.
It's safe to say that some of the following dog supplies companies have really taken off in the last few years as they continue innovating and bringing new and interesting ideas.
8. Happy Pet
Pet health, happiness, and well-being are Happy Pet’s passions.
They endeavor to ensure that every product they create is perfectly crafted and constructed to support each animal's instincts and unique lifestyles.
Inspired by the simple inventions of a rubber ball, Happy Pet has become a respected market leader and widely acclaimed innovator in pet products for dogs, cats, small animals, birds, fish, reptiles, and amphibians.
Their extensive range of products includes toys, collars and leads, treats, grooming, beds and bedding, clothing, and fashion. They also include housing, hygiene and health, travel and safety, and food and supplements.
Over 40 years of international pet trade experience has also earned them a reputation. They are one of the industry's most reliable and customer-focused companies.
They currently design and manufacture over 2,000 high-quality products sold and distributed to over 10,000 retailers worldwide.
Happy Pet owes its success to staying one step ahead of the competition. They understand the changing needs of today’s pets and pet owners.
9. Rosewood Pet
Rosewood Pet has been sourcing and making top-quality, great value pet products for over half a century.
The company sources produce and distribute pet accessories, pet treats, and a range of related products for pets and those who love them.
Rosewood Pet also designs and develops its own pet care products.
It all started in 1960 when three animal-loving friends realized that pet shops across the UK needed a greater range of pet products in their stores.
Rosewood now exports to over 60 countries across Europe, the USA, Australasia, and the Pan Pacific.
10. Pet Brands
Pet Brands’ vision is to become the number one partner for innovative, quality pet accessories and treats worldwide.
With a worldwide team and offices and showrooms in the UK, China, and India, Pet Brands are committed to providing a reliable, efficient service.
Its mission is to provide pet treats and accessories that exceed customer expectations and empower people to have a stronger relationship with their pets. Pet Brands’ product portfolio includes some of the world’s most recognizable brands, from Hello Kitty and Tatty Teddy to Alan Titchmarsh and RAC.
They also have an expanding portfolio of their own label brands, including InterAct, Nooties, Chocoholic, and New England, to name a few.
Top Vet Care Companies
Every dog owner knows that vet care can add up very quickly. Between yearly checkups, flea and tick preventatives, and unexpected injuries, canine parents can spend thousands of dollars every year on vet care for their pets.
With over 300 products used in over 100 countries, Zoetis company is the leader of the animal health industry.
It all began when Pfizer researchers discovered Terramycin (oxytetracycline), an antibiotic shown to be effective against more than 100 different infectious organisms.
From here, Zoetis has worked its way to creating innovative medicines and vaccines complemented by diagnostic products and genetic tests.
For example, Zoetis launched Palladia, the first drug to be approved by the FDA for treating mast cell cancer tumors in dogs.
In their mission, Zoetis says: “We are working every day to understand better and address the real-world challenges faced by those who raise and care for animals in ways they find truly relevant.”
12. MSD Animal Health
MSD Animal Health, known as Merck Animal Health in the United States and Canada, is the global animal health business unit of MSD.
They offer one of the industry’s most innovative portfolios, not only of products but also of services and technologies to prevent, treat and control diseases across all major farm and companion animal species.
Merck Animal Health manufactures dog vaccines, anti-infective and anti-parasitic drugs, fertility management drugs, and other specialty pharmaceutical products.
To help pet owners control parasites, for example, MSD introduced the first chewable tablet for dogs that is effective against fleas and certain tick species for up to 12 weeks.
That's nearly three times longer than monthly products.
Merial, a very well-known company in the US, develops and markets veterinary products, including anesthetics, anti-parasitics, antimicrobials, gastrointestinal, respiratory, and cardiovascular medicines.
It also produces vaccines for all pets.
They have often been known as having some of the best dog flea products. Fleas, ticks, and internal parasites like heart-worm are the bane of a happy dog's existence.
Merial produces industry-leading solutions to these common and potentially dangerous pests.
Vets worldwide recommend and prescribe these products to their clients, along with our range of vaccines to help protect pooches against serious diseases like rabies, distemper, parvovirus, and more.
Merial is responsible for creating the most often purchased tick and flea pills and another flea/tick treatments through their brands: Frontline, NexGard, and HEARTGARD Plus, which is described as “the most recommended heartworm disease preventative for dogs.”
Elanco develops and markets products to treat animal health and increase protein production. Products include flea protection for dogs and cats.
At Elanco, they provide solutions that empower them to advance a vision of food and companionship, enriching life.
As pets increasingly become important parts of our families, so too does the need to help them live longer, healthier, higher-quality lives.
The Bayer business unit, Animal Health, is the fifth largest animal health company in the world.
But with over 100 products, they’re the leaders when it comes to spot-on technology. They created popular tick, flea, worm products Advantage, Advantix, and Advocate.
Bayer has secured a leadership position in researching and developing products for animal health and pest control since 1919.
They are constantly developing new and better products to benefit the animals in our lives.
Common Questions about the Biggest Companies in Pet Food and Other Pet Products
Here are the most common questions about companies that a pet parent is likely to encounter.
What Is the Biggest Dog Brand?
The biggest dog brand is Mars Pet, Inc. This is the biggest brand in the pet food market and the pet industry as a whole.
Who Is the Largest Dog Food Manufacturer?
As mentioned, Mars Petcare, Inc. is the biggest manufacturer of food for dogs.
What Is the Biggest Pet Supply Company?
Looking at just the largest pet food manufacturers. You look at pet supply companies, Petco is the largest.
This company has its headquarters in Phoenix, Arizona, and has stores across North America.
What Is the Best Dog Company?
The best dog company is a matter of personal preference.
Some people will prefer premium pet foods, while others will want to focus on high-quality pet food.
The highest-rated dog companies include Nestle Purina PetCare, Rover.com, Payscape, ad Petplan.