Man’s best friend doesn’t come cheap. In fact, Brits will spend €5.3bn on their fur babies by the end of 2019; that’s more than they spend on gym memberships, cereal, or their Netflix subscriptions.
Nearly half of UK adults own a pet of some kind, with the most popular pet being cats – 25% of us have at least one feline friend. Brits spend around £150 a year insuring their cats, and dog owners fork out more than twice as much, £324 a year. That’s before you’ve housed it, fed it or entertained it, all of which bumps up the cost too.
But would we give up our furry friends to save money? No chance. Not only do pets who need walking improve their owners’ physical health, pets have also been shown to boost their owners’ mental health (multiple studies show the positive impact pets have on owners with PTSD, depression, and those experiencing loneliness or going through drug or alcohol rehabilitation).
Despite dwindling ownership levels – 63% of UK households owned a pet in 2012, now that number is less than 50% – the amount spent on pets hasn’t decreased, in fact it’s set to rise to €5.5bn in the UK alone next year. So while we might have less pets amongst us, they’re more spoiled than ever.
And it’s no wonder our pets are spoiled. With the increased humanisation of pets comes the opportunity for brands to provide pet- friendly versions of the products that their owners already use and enjoy themselves; from vitamins to activity trackers, holidays to social media accounts. We love playing with our games consoles, so why wouldn’t we buy one for our pets to enjoy, too?