- Data also showed 21% of Brits plan to spend more money on their pet now restrictions have eased and they are spending more time of out of the house – including spending on pet day-care facilities and dog walkers
- With families back at the school gates, those with children are now spending more on clothes and accessories for their pet (£18), than those without (£13)
September 13, 2021 – Since March 2020, nearly a third (31%)(1) of UK adults have now bought or adopted a new pet, according to new research from American Express (NYSE: AXP).
While much of the country was confined to their households for significant periods during the last 18 months, over 16 million(2) animal lovers brought a pet into their homes and lives. Millennials and Gen Zs proved to be the most enamoured group, with just over half (52%) of 18-34 year olds buying or adopting a pet since March 2020.
Dogs were the most commonly bought or adopted pet during lockdown (14%), followed in popularity by cats (10%) and then fish (4%) with hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits and birds each being bought or adopted by 2% of the population.
The American Express research shows that not only were pets being purchased during lockdown, but many pets already in households were treated more than ever during this time. A quarter (24%) of Brits who owned a pet before the pandemic say that they spent more on their pet during lockdown compared to before, with those that spent greater amounts saying they spent an average of £89.40 extra, equating to £588 million(3) across the nation, on top of their usual expenditure.
The American Express research also found that pet-loving Brits plan to spend an average of £23 each treating their animal companion in the first month that children are back at school, and (in some cases) adults return to the office, equating to £287 million(4) planned to be spent across the UK. This included spend on dog walkers and pet day-care facilities, as well as food, and toys.
It is Londoners who are likely to spend the most, spending on average £59 per pet over that first month.
|Region||Amount they expect to spend on extra treats in the first month of the return to school (and office)|
|Yorkshire & Humberside||£24|
With families back at the school gates, it is Brits with children spending more on clothes and accessories for their pet (£18), than those without (£13), ensuring that their pets are looking great for the school run.
American Express provides the following top tips for animal loving Brits:
- Earn points and rewards – When treating your pet this autumn, remember to put your spend on a cashback or rewards Card so you can earn something back on your spending.
- Support local businesses – Giving your business to local and independent shops can do a lot to help small businesses, so when searching for that special treat for your pet, try your local high street.
- Find a great local pet sitter – If you are going to be out more than usual, there are local businesses which offer dog walking services or can pop in and check on your pet.
- Invest in pet tech – Treat your pet to the latest tech gadget, from e-toys to activity trackers. There is something for every pet to help them stay healthy, active and entertained.
- Consider your local animal rescue centre – There are plenty of animal rescue centres across the UK where you can buy a pet. They do amazing work and are also a great source of information about caring for your pet, with knowledgeable workers and a wealth of online resources.