China's pet care industry is booming, as pet owners spend more on expensive products and services. From customized nutrition plans, regular health checkups, to yoga classes—the options today are seemingly endless.
Pet owner Yuan Juan says she does not have to worry anymore about her two dogs when she leaves home for a few days, because a five-star pet hotel can help take care of them.
"My dogs live a very regular life here. Professional staff feed them on time. And they will walk them on schedule. They even report to me if my dogs have problems going potty," she said.
China's luxury pet hotel industry is booming. Pet hotels in Wuhan, capital city of central Hubei province, provide fancy suites and personal rooms for their little guests. Surveillance systems are installed so pet owners can see how well their dogs and cats live.
"We have 19 rooms in our pet hotel. The prices range from 80 yuan to 180 yuan per night," said Li Xuedi, manager, Puppy Pet Hotel.
"Customers have to book the room one month before the holidays like spring festival or the National Day. From spa to teeth cleaning, and manicures to hair salon, we provide almost every pet care service you can think of."
A few years ago, luxury pet services were something reserved for China's rich upperclass. But today, more people are getting in on the trend. China's so-called lonely generation—the old whose children have left home, and the young who have not gotten married—are becoming major customers of pet services.
"This year, we were allowed to sell pets in the big department stores in Wuhan. It means buying pets is as normal as buying clothes. And today it's a trend to raise small pets like rabbits and hamsters etc. They're small in size and very easy to take care of," said Mao Zhuoyun, manager, Rabbit Mall.
According to 2016 China's pets industry white paper, China's pet market was worth 98 billion yuan in 2015. And the number is expected to surpass 200 billion yuan in 2020.