SEATTLE, April 26, 2022 – Rover.com (Nasdaq: ROVR), the world’s largest online marketplace for loving pet care, teamed up with Zillow to announce today the fastest growing dog-friendly cities in the U.S.
Two years into the pandemic, it’s clear the U.S. housing market continues to experience profound change. Demand remains historically strong, despite low inventory, rising home prices and escalating mortgage rates. Looking more closely at the shifting housing landscape, new data indicates some changes can be attributed to the nearly half of American households that include a dog. The vast majority of pet parents today consider their dog part of the family, and those family members are increasingly dictating housing decisions.
According to a new survey from Rover® and Zillow®, 72 percent of dog parents say they would move to better accommodate their dog’s needs, and 87 percent are willing to spend more when buying or renting a home to get more pet-friendly features such as a fenced yard, doggy door or proximity to a dog park. Among dog parents who have moved since the pandemic began, 45 percent intentionally purchased or rented a bigger or more expensive home for the sake of their dog’s happiness. In fact, 61 percent of pet parents indicated their dog’s happiness and wellbeing is what actually inspired them to move.
“It’s clear our pets are at the center of our families, and they’re influencing how and where we live,” said Kate Jaffe, trends expert at Rover. “Pet parents want to do right by their dogs, including giving them the best resources and opportunities to be happy. At the same time, people have realized that pets can improve our own health and wellbeing. Moving to a location with a big backyard and proximity to a park can not only improve our pet’s life – it may also lead to more exercise, more outdoor time and more social interaction that can actually make an impact on our own happiness.”
To find the Fastest Growing Dog-Friendly Cities, we looked at Rover’s database of millions of pet profiles to find out where pet parents are popping up and compared it to Zillow’s report on where people are searching for pet-friendly single-family homes. According to the data, the top of the fastest growing dog-friendly cities list includes: Antioch, TN; Baltimore, MD; Alexandria, VA; Fuquay Varina, NC; and Kansas City, KS. While some of this year’s fastest growing cities may seem surprising, many include the dog-friendly amenities that pet parents are looking for.
When choosing where to live, 72 percent of dog parents prioritize neighborhood walkability for the sake of their dog, and 64 percent of dog parents said a fenced yard is the most appealing dog-friendly home feature. Markets that already have pet-friendly vibes may continue to lead the pack in the future, as well, with 72 percent of dog parents indicating it’s important to them to live in a dog-friendly city with plenty of other dog parents, dog parks and pet-friendly housing options.
“We saw pandemic pet ownership soar among renters, which has impacted their home preferences,” says Zillow’s home trends expert Amanda Pendleton. “More renters now report owning at least one pet compared to 2020. Like recent movers on the whole, they appear to be seeking out more space and relative affordability in places where they can get a fenced backyard or room for a doghouse.”
The search for more pet-friendly cities may also be partially the result of difficulties that renters with dogs are facing. According to 67 percent of renters with dogs, even rentals listed as “dog-friendly” are still challenging to rent for reasons such as breed restrictions, size restrictions, high security deposits, and a limit on the number of pets allowed.
You can find more information and to see the full list of the fastest growing dog friendly cities in America, here.
The Top 20 Fastest Growing Dog-Friendly Cities ranking is according to both new dog accounts between June 2021 and March 2022 from Rover’s database of millions of pet profiles, and Zillow rentals pageview data from March 2021 to March 2022. For each city, Rover data on trends in new dog accounts was combined with Zillow data representing cities with the highest increases in average daily page views per pet-friendly single family home rental listing over the year. Only the cities with the highest annual increase in share of new dog accounts on Rover and positive increases in annual average daily pageviews were considered in the final ranking, ordered by the increase in share of new dog accounts. Cities that didn’t have a large enough data sample size from either company were excluded.”
Founded in 2011 and based in Seattle, Rover (NASDAQ: ROVR) is the world’s largest online marketplace for pet care. Rover connects pet parents with caring pet care providers who offer overnight services, including boarding and in-home pet sitting, as well as daytime services, including doggy daycare, dog walking, and drop-in visits. Millions of pet parents have booked a service on Rover, with more than 500,000 pet care providers across North America and Europe.
About Zillow Group
Zillow Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: Z and ZG) is reimagining real estate to make it easier to unlock life’s next chapter. As the most visited real estate website in the United States, Zillow® and its affiliates offer customers an on-demand experience for selling, buying, renting or financing with transparency and ease.
Zillow Group’s affiliates and subsidiaries include Zillow®, Zillow Premier Agent®, Zillow Home Loans™, Zillow Closing Services™,, Trulia®, Out East®, ShowingTime®, Bridge Interactive®, dotloop®, StreetEasy® and HotPads®. Zillow Home Loans, LLC is an Equal Housing Lender, NMLS #10287 (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org).
Kristin Sandberg, Rover
Tyrone Law, Zillow