The pet tech industry is competitive, but with the right approach, there’s room for new, innovative players. Chewy’s growth shows the tremendous demand for convenient, pet-focused e-commerce. Building a pet care app like Chewy can offer significant benefits – potential revenue, valuable experience, and the satisfaction of creating something truly useful for pet lovers. 

In this guide, we’ll help you navigate the development process, providing strategies and solutions to create an app pet parents will love. We’ll also delve into features that promote ease of use and product discovery tailored to their pet’s needs.

Pet Care App market insights

The pet care industry is filled with potential, offering exciting opportunities for businesses ready to tap into this ever-growing market.

According to a report by Precedence Research, in 2023, the global market reached an impressive $302.89 billion. That number is expected to nearly double by 2033, reaching a staggering $597.51 billion.

This remarkable growth reflects a changing mindset, where pets are increasingly seen as beloved family members deserving of the very best care. The United States is a major force in this trend, with its pet care market reaching $89.05 billion in 2023 and projections showing the potential to double by 2033. North America’s overall dominance in the global market in 2023 further emphasizes the future opportunities for pet care apps within this region.  

Pet food makes up the biggest portion of this spending. Still, a fascinating shift is happening – more and more pet owners want eco-friendly and sustainable options. This shows a desire to make responsible choices for the planet and their beloved animals.

What Sets a Pet Care App Like Chewy Apart?

Here’s a breakdown of what makes Chewy-like apps thrive in the competitive pet care market


Chewy-like apps actively streamline the pet purchasing process. Shoppers can easily navigate product listings, quickly find exactly what their pet needs through intelligent search functions, and even receive recommendations tailored to their pet’s breed and age. Also, reliable shipping, along with tempting free options, removes a major obstacle for busy pet owners. Additionally, subscriptions and auto-ship features ensure pet parents always have essentials on hand, fostering loyalty and boosting order values.

Customer-Centric Focus

Going above and beyond for customers is another reason behind Chewy’s devoted following. Round-the-clock support from knowledgeable pet lovers provides a sense of security. Furthermore, personalized details, like birthday reminders sprinkled with a special discount, make pets and their owners feel truly valued. By becoming a trusted resource for pet health and enrichment information, apps solidify their position as a partners in providing the best possible care.

Community building

The best pet care apps recognize that the joy of pet ownership extends beyond fulfilling basic needs. They promote a sense of community through features like forums, fun social sharing, or connections with local pet service providers. Partnerships with veterinary practices or groomers further enhance convenience. Moreover, giving back through donations or support for animal welfare organizations strengthens your brand’s image with socially conscious pet owners.

Key Features to have in a Pet care App Like Chewy

Crafting an app akin to Chewy requires a blend of user-friendly features and personalized touches. Here are some unique elements to consider incorporating:

Tailored Sign-up Journey

Design an intuitive sign-up process that not only collects essential user information but also prompts pet owners to share details about their furry companions, fostering a sense of personalization from the get-go.

Dynamic Pet Profile Creation

Instead of just basic pet profiles, offer a dynamic platform where users can input detailed information about their pets’ preferences, dietary needs, and health conditions. This not only helps in recommending suitable products but also enhances the shopping experience.

Interactive Feedback Hub

Implement a feedback and rating system not only for products but also for the overall shopping experience. Allow users to share photos and anecdotes about their pets’ experiences with products, fostering a sense of community among pet owners.

Advanced Search Capabilities

Elevate the search feature by incorporating advanced filters that allow users to narrow down products based on specific criteria such as ingredient preferences, dietary restrictions, and even eco-friendliness.

Personalized User Accounts

Create user accounts that serve as personalized hubs for pet owners, showcasing past purchases, recommended products based on previous orders, and exclusive offers tailored to their pets’ needs.

Comprehensive Order Tracking

Offer real-time order tracking with interactive maps and notifications, ensuring pet owners are always in the loop about the status of their deliveries.

Live Pet Expert Chat

Integrate a live chat feature staffed by pet experts who can provide personalized recommendations, answer queries about products, and offer guidance on pet care.

Seamless Prescription Management

Streamline the process of managing pet prescriptions by allowing users to upload, store, and reorder prescriptions directly within the app, ensuring they never run out of essential medications for their pets.

By infusing these unique features into your app, you can create a comprehensive and engaging platform that not only simplifies pet shopping but also fosters a sense of community and personalized care for furry companions.

How To Develop a Pet Care App Like Chewy?

Developing a successful pet care app like Chewy requires careful planning. Let’s break down the process, ensuring your app finds its paw print in the crowded pet care market.

Research and Planning

Start by studying the competition. Take a close look at industry leaders like Chewy and Rover. Study their strengths and weaknesses to identify opportunities for improvement. Finally, define your ideal user. Who are you trying to reach? Do they prioritize eco-friendly pet supplies, a specific breed of animal, or local services for their furry companions? Identifying your target audience will guide every design decision for your app.

Feature Mapping

Master the e-commerce basics first. Offer intuitive product listings with a powerful search function to make finding the perfect product easier. Ensure a smooth checkout process and provide clear order tracking. Then, layer on pet-specific features like detailed profiles where owners can share their pet’s breed, age, and any special needs. 

Personalized product recommendations make customers feel like you truly understand their furry friend. You can also build a sense of community by offering forums, social sharing features, or connections to local pet experts. Finally, think outside the box. Can you offer in-app vet consultations, virtual try-ons, or other unique features that set your app apart?

Choosing Your Tech Stack

The technology you choose will shape your app’s speed and ability to adapt to future growth. Explore programming languages suitable for iOS and Android, or build an app that goes on both platforms. Also, select reliable databases and cloud-hosting services to manage your data securely. Integrate trusted payment gateways to protect your customers’ financial information. If your chosen features require it, you might explore adding AI for personalized recommendations or augmented reality tools.

User Experience 

Make your app easy and enjoyable to use. Focus on a clean design and intuitive navigation. Embrace a fun, pet-friendly theme without sacrificing professionalism. Remember, most users will access your app from their phones, so ensure it works flawlessly on smaller screens. Provide high-quality images and informative product descriptions to empower users to make confident purchasing decisions.

Development and Testing

Decide whether you’ll leverage your own development team, outsource the project, or use a combination of both approaches. Agile development methods allow you to adapt to user feedback and make adjustments throughout the development process. Before launching, thoroughly test your app on a variety of devices and operating systems. The goal is to ensure a seamless and frustration-free experience for all users.

Launch and Beyond

Optimize your app store listings carefully. Use relevant keywords and write compelling descriptions that excite potential users. It also requires an informative content marketing strategy that includes blog posts and helpful guides you can share on social media platforms. Connect directly with pet lovers on popular platforms, and consider partnering with pet influencers to spread the word about your app. Celebrate your launch with special promotions or discounts to attract early users.

How much does it cost to build a Pet Care App like Chewy?

Building a pet care app that rivals Chewy requires a substantial investment. A basic app offering core e-commerce functionalities might start around $25,000 and reach $50,000. On the other hand, incorporating pet-specific features and a more customized design can push the price range significantly higher, landing between $50,000 and $150,000. However, replicating Chewy’s comprehensive feature set, including cutting-edge technology and extensive scalability, can easily surpass $150,000.

Several factors influence the overall cost. The complexity of the features you want plays a major role. Additionally, developer experience and location significantly impact hourly rates. Finally, the specific technology stack you choose (programming languages, databases, etc.) will also contribute to the final price tag.

Detailed cost analysis

Here’s a cost analysis table breaking down the potential expenses of developing a pet care app like Chewy :

Feature/Cost CategoryBasic AppMid-Range AppChewy-Level App
Planning & Requirements$2,000 – $5,000$5,000 – $10,000$10,000 – $20,000+
UI/UX Design$5,000 – $15,000$15,000 – $30,000$30,000 – $60,000+
Front-end Development$10,000 – $30,000$30,000 – $60,000$60,000 – $120,000+
Back-end Development$10,000 – $30,000$30,000 – $60,000$60,000 – $120,000+
Database & Cloud Setup$2,000 – $6,000$6,000 – $15,000$15,000 – $30,000+
E-commerce FunctionalityIncluded in dev costsIncluded in dev costsIncluded in dev costs
Pet-Specific Features$10,000 – $30,000$30,000 – $70,000+
Advanced Features (AI, AR)$15,000 – $40,000$40,000 – $100,000+
Testing$3,000 – $10,000$10,000 – $20,000$20,000 – $40,000+
Launch & Marketing$2,000 – $5,000$5,000 – $15,000$15,000 – $30,000+
Contingency (10-15%)$2,500 -$7,500$7,500 – $18,000$18,000 – $45,000+

Please note: These are general estimates. Actual costs can vary based on project complexity, developer rates, and your location.

In order to get a realistic picture of development costs, it’s crucial to obtain detailed quotes from your development partners. Be sure to provide them with a comprehensive list of desired features and your ideal timeline. Remember to factor in ongoing expenses like maintenance, updates, and hosting fees for a more accurate budgetary picture.

How do pet care apps like Chewy generate revenue?

Pet care apps like Chewy have created thriving businesses by implementing a variety of revenue strategies. Let’s explore the key methods :

Direct Sales

E-commerce forms the foundation for many pet care apps. They purchase pet supplies like food, treats, and toys at wholesale prices. These products are then marked up for sale on the app, generating profit from the difference between wholesale and retail prices. Many apps take this a step further by developing their own private-label brands of pet products. These in-house brands often boast higher profit margins compared to selling third-party products.

Subscription Services

Subscriptions are a powerful tool for generating predictable revenue streams. Apps can also offer recurring orders with convenient automatic payments for essential pet supplies like food and litter. This fosters customer loyalty and ensures a steady stream of income. 

To incentivize sign-ups, apps often provide discounts to subscribers. Another popular option is subscription boxes. Pet owners receive curated selections of treats, toys, and other goodies delivered at regular intervals. This model offers the convenience of automatic delivery along with the excitement of a monthly surprise.


Pet care apps offer a valuable platform for brands eager to connect with a dedicated audience of pet owners. This leads to opportunities for banner advertisements strategically placed within the app. Some apps allow brands to pay for preferential placement of their products within search results, ensuring their offerings receive maximum visibility. 

Affiliate marketing provides another avenue for revenue generation. Here, the app earns a commission when users click an affiliate link and make a purchase from a partner retailer.

Additional Revenue Streams

Pet care apps can unlock further revenue streams by offering premium features. This could include advanced product filtering, personalized pet health insights, or exclusive content locked behind a paywall. Incorporating in-app booking services for veterinarians, pet walkers, or groomers creates a one-stop shop for pet owners while offering the app the potential to collect a commission on each transaction. 

Finally, some apps may choose to monetize the anonymized data they collect on user behavior and preferences. This anonymized data becomes valuable market research for pet-related businesses.

Best Development Approach to Building a Chewy Competitor 

The right development approach for a pet care app like Chewy depends heavily on your specific circumstances. Consider your available funds, the complexity of the app, your desired timeline, and the technical expertise you have easy access to when making your decision.

In-House Development

In-house development offers maximum control over your project’s direction and priorities. You can directly influence the app’s development and ensure it aligns with your vision. This approach also fosters internal expertise within your team, creating a valuable resource for future updates and maintenance. However, building an in-house team comes with the highest upfront costs. You’ll need to factor in hiring expenses, infrastructure setup, and ongoing salaries. Additionally, the time required to recruit and onboard a team can significantly delay your launch date.


Freelancers offer a potentially lower-cost alternative with access to specialized skills. This approach is well-suited for smaller, clearly defined tasks or features requiring specific expertise. Freelancers can provide the flexibility to scale your team up or down as needed. However, managing freelancers effectively requires additional effort. You’ll need to invest time in finding qualified candidates, vetting their skills, and coordinating their work. Maintaining project continuity can also be challenging, as freelancers may have competing commitments.

App Development Companies

Partnering with an app development company like Idea Usher provides immediate access to a team with proven experience. Established companies have well-defined processes in place, ensuring clear deadlines and a focus on delivering high-quality work. While you might sacrifice some direct control compared to an in-house team, app development companies can often be cost-effective for clearly defined projects. The key here is choosing the right partner. Carefully evaluate potential companies by examining their portfolios, experience with similar projects, and communication style.

The Hybrid Approach

In some cases, you might find that a hybrid approach offers the most advantages. For instance, you could establish a small in-house team to handle core development and project management while outsourcing specialized tasks or features to freelancers. Alternatively, you could partner with an app development company for the bulk of the development work while keeping a core team in-house to ensure the app aligns perfectly with your long-term vision.

Popular Pet Care Apps like Chewy in the Market  

The pet care app market is brimming with innovative tools designed to simplify and enhance pet ownership. Let’s delve into some of the most popular apps and explore what makes them stand out:


The Rover app stands apart as the largest online marketplace for pet care services. This platform simplifies finding, booking, and paying for trusted local dog walkers, pet sitters (overnight or daytime), and boarding facilities.

Genre: Pet service marketplace

Special Features:

  • Connects pet owners with local dog walkers, pet sitters, and boarding providers.
  • Facilitates easy booking, secure payments, and messaging.
  • Offers GPS tracking of walks and detailed sitter reports for peace of mind.

Available on iOS, Android, Web


The Wag! app excels in offering convenient, on-demand dog walking services. It also emphasizes convenience, with scheduled walks available alongside on-demand services. 

Genre: On-demand pet services

Special Features:

  • Quick booking of dog walkers (often within minutes).
  • On-demand and scheduled walks are available.
  • GPS tracking and live updates during walks.
  • Some locations offer additional services like boarding and training.

Available on iOS, Android, Web


The Petcube app centers around innovative smart pet cameras designed to let owners connect with their furry friends remotely. High-definition video, two-way audio, and a playful laser pointer allow for engagement even when away. 

Genre: Smart pet cameras

Special Features:

  • High-definition video streaming of your pet from anywhere.
  • Two-way audio for communication.
  • Optional laser pointer for interactive play.
  • Some models offer built-in treat dispensing or vet chat features.

Available on iOS and Android, with compatible Petcube devices


The Puppr app transforms dog training with a comprehensive library of video lessons taught by renowned trainer Sara Carson. It offers step-by-step guidance for pet parents, encouraging a strong bond while teaching their dogs new skills.

Genre: Dog training

Special Features:

  • Step-by-step video lessons by celebrity dog trainer Sara Carson.
  • Positive reinforcement techniques and clicker training focus.
  • Covers basic commands, tricks, and behavior modification.

Available on iOS, Android


Building a pet care app like Chewy takes hard work and planning. But the rewards can be amazing! The pet care market is huge and keeps on growing. Pet owners are always looking for ways to make their pets’ lives better. By focusing on the requirements of pet owners, you can create something truly special.

The journey may require patience and dedication. Start with a solid foundation, listen to user feedback, and don’t be afraid to innovate. With the right approach, your app could become a trusted resource for pet owners everywhere, moving you toward entrepreneurial success in the rewarding world of pet care.

Looking to Develop a PetCare App like Chewy?

Ready to bring your Chewy competitor to life by Partnering with Idea Usher! Our expertise in e-commerce, app development, and the pet care market positions us perfectly to turn your vision into a reality.

From crafting engaging user experiences and implementing essential pet-focused features to deploying cutting-edge technologies, we guide you every step of the way. Contact Idea Usher today, and let’s start building the future of pet care together!

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How much does it cost to develop a pet care app?

Costs vary widely depending on the features you want. A basic app might cost between $25,000 and $50,000. More complex apps with lots of features can easily exceed $150,000.

What is the future of pet care?

The future of pet care focuses on convenience, personalization, and technology. Expect to see more apps that offer quick services, tailored recommendations, and ways to connect pet owners with experts.

What are the categories of pet apps?

  • E-commerce: Online stores for pet food, supplies, and treats.
  • Service Marketplaces: Finding dog walkers, pet sitters, and groomers.
  • Health & Wellness: Vet consultations, pet health trackers, and training apps.
  • Social & Community: Apps for pet lovers to connect and share photos or tips.

How profitable is the pet care industry?

The pet care industry shows incredible potential. According to Precedence Research, the global market reached $302.89 billion in 2023. This figure is projected to nearly double by 2033, potentially reaching a remarkable $597.51 billion.

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