A new poll has produced a fascinating snapshot of British pet ownership.

  • It finds 65% of British pet owners are dog owners, 41% have cats
  • Over half of pet owners allow their pet to sleep in their bed & are willing to splurge on premium pet food
  • The majority spend £26-£50 per month on their pet and prefer to shop in-store versus online

New research released reveals a snapshot of British pet ownership and spending habits to date. The polling comes alongside a highly publicised pandemic pet surge, with 11% of Brits reporting getting a new pet during the pandemic back in November 2021.

Attest, a consumer research platform for the world’s biggest and fastest-growing brands, polled 400 British working-age pet owners to see what kinds of pets they have, how they like to treat them and how they tend to shop for them. The research revealed some interesting results…

It’s raining cats and dogs

When it comes to what kinds of pets Brits own, dogs and cats reign supreme at 65% and 41% respectively. In regards to how many total pets they have in their household, most report having a single pet to their name (40%) with two pets following close behind (21%) and three pets thereafter (5%).

Ownership of other domestic pets is much less common. The British public aren’t nearly as keen to care for fish (11%), rabbits (6%), rodents (6%), birds (3%), reptiles (3%) or horses/donkeys (2%).

Pets deserve birthdays, nice food and outings too

The research also suggests that pets are seamlessly woven into family life, with many Brits going the extra mile to make them feel included and well taken care of.

  • A good night’s rest – 50% of Brits let their pet sleep in their own bed.
  • Eating good, staying well – 59% have some kind of pet medical insurance, 50% purchase premium pet food, 36% give their pets vitamins & supplements, 18% cook for their pets, & 12% are signed up for a treat subscription.
  • Joining in on the fun – 58% buy birthday and Christmas presents for their pets and 38% take their pets along with them wherever they can.

The ecommerce boom hasn’t hit pet shops as of yet

Of those polled, the majority of Brits tend to spend between £26-£50 (40%) on their pets monthly. This is followed by £51-£75 (19%), under £25 (18%), and £76-£100 (12%). And despite the pandemic ecommerce boom, most pet owners still prefer to frequent the pet store or supermarket to get everything from food, treats and equipment.

  • Food – for most Brits, food is a weekly (48%) or monthly (25%) purchase, with the majority preferring to get it in a supermarket (42%) or a pet store (30%) and only 9% buying it online.
  • Treats – treats are purchased with a bit less frequency with 23% shopping weekly and 32% shopping for them monthly. Most also tend to prefer to snag them at the pet store (41%) or supermarket (34%), with only 10% heading to online retailers.
  • Equipment – equipment such as toys, leashes, cages, and beyond, is more of an every few months (35%) or monthly (19%) kind of shopping habit, with most still hitting the pet store (42%) to make these purchases. Meanwhile, 19% go online and 11% hit the supermarket for pet equipment.

Jeremy King, CEO and founder of Attest, said of the research,“This research confirms what we already know: pets are important family members. Brits make a significant effort to make animals feel a part of everyday life – from birthday celebrations to home-cooked food and regular outings. For those in the pet goods space, Brits’ love of their furry friends presents major opportunities especially for bricks and mortar outlets given that the majority of pet owners make their purchases there.”



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