Why men are driving the rise in cat ownership in the UK
Cats are traditionally perceived as being more popular with women than men – however, this is changing. Research by the Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association (PFMA)[i] amongst 8,000 UK households found the number of cats in the country rose by 500,000 to reach eight million, a rise it claims is being driven by one million more men getting a cat.
The PFMA says the number of men owning cats increased from 13% (4.2 million) in 2016 to 17% in 2017 (5.5 million). It believes this can be attributed partly to celebrity men posting pictures of their cats on the internet. Ed Sheeran, Ricky Gervais, Russell Brand and even Snoop Dogg have all posted pictures of themselves as proud cat owners[ii].
Cats are independent creatures and are not as time consuming to look after as a dog, but they can be just as loving and affectionate. They are well suited to smaller homes, including flats as they can be kept indoors if necessary and they are great pets for people who work all day.
Many of our home and pet sitting assignments involve cat sitting, as many cat owners are reluctant to use catteries when they go away. They want to keep their cat in their home environment. For them, hiring a professional home and pet sitter is the ideal solution and it also means the home is secure and safe too.
Sometimes our homesitters are asked to look after elderly cats or cats that need regular medication. If a cat is on medication or needs a follow up trip to the vet, most are happy to give medication, including injections, as directed by the owner, as well as take them to the vet if required.
Susan and Surojit Ghosh from London have been using our home and pet sitting services for 16 years to look after their cats. Initially, they needed someone to look after one cat, Pepsi who has since sadly died, and since then, two part-Bengal cats called Sprite and Scampi.
They started by using Homesitters Ltd once or twice a year and when they travelled to India at Christmas to see family. However, when Surojit was posted to Hong Kong with work, the service really came into its own.
Susan was still in London but travelled to Hong Kong for five or six weeks at a time and relied on Homesitters to look after Pepsi and their home. In Pepsi’s last year she was unwell and needed regular medication. Susan was able to go away and leave Pepsi in the care of homesitters with whom she was familiar and who were fond of her.
The couple said, “We had homesitters who had had cats themselves and had given medication to cats before, so were comfortable they knew how to deal with it. We felt reassured that Pepsi was in safe hands and that she wouldn’t feel that we had abandoned her because she was with people she knew.”
If you need someone to look after your cats when you go on holiday this year, contact Homesitters Ltd to ask about our home and pet sitting services.
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