We know our dogs are important to us—but just HOW important? Rover.com turned to the nation’s pet parents to find out. We put together a landmark survey to discover how dog ownership affects American lives. And, well, it’s just as we suspected. We really, really love our dogs, and we’re increasingly concerned about their wellbeing.
Here’s a sampling of what dog owners had to say:
- 65% have more photos of their dog than of their friends—or significant other!
- 55% say their dog gets less than 45 minutes of physical exercise each day
- 47% say they frequently leave work sooner than they should in order to let their dog out
The Rover Trends Report shows that pet parents are still looking for quality, personalized care for their dogs, even as they delight in their dogs’ companionship. For example:
- 83% of dog owners have worried their dog walker “cuts corners”
- 51% believe it’s harder to find the perfect dog walker than it is to find the perfect spouse
At Rover, we’re passionate about changing this. We want to make sure that everyone can experience the joy of pet parenthood, no matter their schedule or lifestyle. And it’s one reason we’re so excited about our new app, which offers a direct line of communication between pet care providers and pet owners. With it, pet parents always know their dog is safe, happy, and getting exceptional care.
Check out more fascinating stats below!
Dogs are the most popular pet
According to the APPA:
- 37–47% of American households have a dog
- There are dogs in 52 million homes across the US
Man’s best friend
The top reasons Americans get a dog:
- Companionship: 65%
- Fun: 19%
- Security: 5%
What’s your dog parenting style?
52% of dog owners describe their dog parenting personality as “Doting Parent.”
- Tough Love Parent 19%
- Zen Parent 15%
- Helicopter Parent 15%
- 65% of dog owners take more photos of their dog than their significant other or friends
- 56% of dog owners have purchased a birthday or holiday present for their dog
- 39% of dog owners have bought something personalized for their dog
- 36% of dog owners have dressed up their dog
Whimpers while we’re away
- 82% of dog owners worry about their dog when they’re away.
- 88% of dog owners have done something to make sure their dog doesn’t get lonely.
- Buying special toys or treats they only get when they’re away: 46%
- Keeping the TV or radio on: 46%
- Getting another pet to keep their dog company: 29%
Pet parenthood can be ruff
- 47% of employed dog owners frequently leave work sooner than they should because they need to let their dog out.
- 56% of dog owners skip traveling because they’re concerned about the cost of their pet’s care.
- Including 64% of millennial dog owners.
We love our dogs—but we’re busy
55% of dog owners believe their dogs get less than 45 minutes of physical exercise per day.
- My schedule is too busy: 40%
- There aren’t enough places nearby: 23%
- My health isn’t good enough: 17%
We want our dogs to stay in shape
- 64% of dog owners believe they’re more likely to stick to their dog’s exercise routine than their own.
- 91% of U.S. dog owners feel certain they would know if their dog was overweight
Dog walking is good for everyone’s health …
Not only does walking help a dog stay fit—it has emotional benefits for humans too.
- 93% of dog owners believe one of the best ways to de-stress is by taking their dog for a walk.
Compared to walking alone, dog walkers feel:
- Happier (59%)
- Calmer (41%)
- Physically safer (37%)
… and dog walking is good for your social life!
- 83% of dog owners have met someone while walking their dog—including:
- A neighbor (66%)
- A new friend (33%)
- A dog walker or sitter (24%)
Pet sitting vs. babysitting? No contest.
- 85% of dog owners would rather have a job as a dog sitter than a babysitter.