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The $99 billion pet-retail economy is booming, thanks to a surge in pandemic puppies and kittens: Chewy’s shares have more than doubled since the start of the year, Petco rebranded itself as a health and wellness company ahead of its IPO, and dog-supplies startup, BarkBox, recently announced it would go public in a $1.6 billion deal.

As wrote in The Bold Italic, the majority of America’s pet parents are millennials who find comfort and stability in their “fur children” after experiencing a series of economic setbacks. “We own less than 5% of the country’s wealth, starting our adult lives in the deep shadows of the 2008 housing crisis, working through the rise of the gig economy and stagnant wages,” Lee writes. “And now, in what should be the prime of our career and family-building years, we’ve been hit with a global pandemic.”

Senior Ideas Editor, Medium. Founding Editor of Index. Previously, The Atlantic. Pitches: and

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