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Medical Innovation In Pet Healthcare Is Taking Things Up a Notch The pet care industry is globally expanding horizontally and vertically with innovative and challenging minds at work

By Anushka Iyer

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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India is currently home to over 10-plus million pets. Over time, pet parents have realized the importance of medicine and innovation and the change it can bring about in a pet's life. Pet innovation today is booming across treats, food, grooming, wearables, insurance, online veterinary services, genetic testing, stem cell therapy, diagnostics and much more. According to PETEX INDIA 2021, the pet food market alone is projected to cross $310 million by FY22. The pet care industry is globally expanding horizontally and vertically with innovative and challenging minds at work. Medical innovation has brought about effective growth thus making way for new products, services and medicines for pets. Medical procedures such as lasers for joint pains and joint care have helped pet owners make the lives of their furry babies a little less painful.

A few medical innovations in India have particularly taken the Indian pet care sector a notch higher:

CBD & Hemp Seed Oil For Overall Health & Wellness

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a chemical found in the cannabis sativa plant and is known to have wonderful pain-relieving properties. CBD is one of the most effective natural therapies for dogs suffering from arthritis and many other diseases. It is safe and has no side effects. CBD oil interacts with the cells in the muscle, skin and nerves of pets thereby reducing their pain. CBD and hemp seed oils are now available in the form of oil, shampoos and treats. It also benefits pets with anxiety issues triggered due to loud noises, people or travel and keeps them calm and relaxed. CBD oil is finding an innovative use in health and wellness based products for pets and its multiple visible benefits.

Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids in hemp seed oil help control skin breakouts and protect the skin.

They are responsible for creating a healthy cell membrane and help to avoid excessive fur shedding. Hemp serves as the optimum plant-based nutrition that is easily digestible and includes antioxidants that aid elevated health in pets. Hemp seed oil has recently been added to pet food and treats and is also being used in healing balms for dry paws and skin.

Prebiotics & Probiotics For Gut Health

Probiotics are the billions of good bacteria that live in the gastrointestinal tract of animals. Pets respond to supplements in the form of immunity boosters and probiotic strips are easy dissolving strips unlike pills, powders or tablets which the pet might refuse to intake. Probiotics treat diarrhoea, stomach related issues, irritable bowel syndrome, improve digestive health, prevent anxiety, reduce stress and improve general health and well-being. Given its health benefits, prebiotics and probiotics have found their way in pet food as they help to maintain the pH balance in the gut and keep the digestive tract healthy. Probiotics have also recently been introduced in shampoos as they help in supporting a healthy microbiome and defend against common skin problems such as itching dryness, dandruff, hot spots, excessive shedding and yeast in pets.

Assistive Devices To Aid Mobility

Harnesses and slings for dogs suffering from hip dysplasia are gaining popularity among vets and pet parents. These act as a wheel-chair and support the pet's rear body and enable them to move around. They also help pets who have lost their hind legs in accidents. Harnesses for pets who are blind have been created such that they form a halo around their head and this will alert the pet if they happen to bump against any object. These innovations may alter the pet's appearance but what is important is that it helps pets to live a normal life. The same goes for pets afflicted with arthritis. Elevated feeding stations, ramps to reduce the stress on joints have also become common to households who have aging pets.

Veterinary Diagnostics

Innovation in the use of technology that equips veterinarians to view real-time information on internal bone and muscle structure is in the fray. This will help to speed up the prototype required to create an animal bone model that is generated using the tomography scan technology. This technology is building steam though still in its nascent stage. Two new blood types, Langereis and Junior, have been identified in pets apart from the 12 dog blood types. New diagnostic techniques through tests which can help to diagnose the possibility of diseases in pets, confirm or even classify disease status in pets, is the need of the hour.

According to a study by Grand View Research on veterinary medicine, the global veterinary medicine market size was estimated at $29.2 billion in 2020 and is expected to expand at a CAGR of 7.4 per cent from 2021 to 2028. Steady medical innovation is solving unsolved and unattended problems that pets have faced since decades. While the offline gap has been filled in by the online D2C revolution in pet care and wellness, advancements in medical innovation remain unhindered despite the pandemic.

Anushka Iyer

Founder and CEO,

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