Are Pets and Pet Owners Loving Lockdown?



Specialist pet insurance providers, The Insurance Emporium, recently surveyed* 1000 pet owners who were newly working from home during the COVID-19 lockdown to see if they had noticed any changes in their dog or cat’s behaviour during this time.  The pet owners also revealed the impact their pets had had on them too during these unprecedented times.

So, did dogs conform to the stereotype of loving the extra attention, with cats resenting sharing their space?  And did the pets really make people feel happier?

Read on to find out more.

An overwhelming majority of pet owners (61%) said their pets have had a positive impact on their health and wellbeing during the COVID-19 outbreak.  Almost half of the pet owners (45.5%) felt more bonded to their pets thanks to staying home during lockdown, with 30% even admitting to feeling fearful about how their pets would cope without them once it was over.

What about productivity and pets whilst working from home?

41% of pet owners felt their work productivity had in fact increased because their pet was there, with just 15% saying their pet had made them less productive.

However, with only a third (32%) of people saying they liked seeing their colleagues’ and clients’ pets in video calls -saying that it made them seem more personable- it seems that not everyone likes to see pets in a work setting even during lockdown!

As for the pets themselves, was the stereotype of cats being slightly cooler and more standoffish than dogs true?

It seems not, with over a third (35%) of cat owners saying their cat was more sociable and loving the extra attention, and around a quarter (26%) saying that their feline was happier than before lockdown.  Just one fifth said their cat was heading out of the house more than usual.

Dogs seemed to be living their best life under lockdown, with around 40% of dog owners saying their dog seemed happier, more sociable and loving the extra attention (37%) than before COVID-19.

Around a fifth of dog owners noticed that their dog was eating more than before.  Maybe this is not surprising given that the average dog was being walked for around an extra half an hour each day than before lockdown (28 minutes).

The respondents in the survey were asked to share embarrassing or funny stories about their pets during lockdown.  The experiences of those in the survey will probably resonate in most households with pets, with family members queuing up to take the dog for a lockdown breakout walk, cats photobombing video conference calls and generally draping themselves over laptops, and dogs destroying valuable toilet paper, barking at the worst possible time and chasing the cat.

The Insurance Emporium’s Chief Executive Officer, Francis Martin, owner of two cats and a Bernese Mountain dog, said:

“As a pet owner myself, I have noticed that my pets seem to be loving the extra attention during lockdown.  As specialist pet insurance providers, it is very much business as usual for us regardless of lockdown and we are still here for our customers, both existing and new.  We totally understand that our customers want the best for their beloved pets should the unexpected happen and, as award-winning pet insurers, having insurance cover is one consideration that might help provide some welcome peace of mind.”

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3 thoughts on “Are Pets and Pet Owners Loving Lockdown?

  1. Rohvannyn says:

    My boy Shinji has loved having me around all the time. He’s been calmer and more confident too. With two new kittens here, I’m glad to know that I’ll have till July (when my office starts opening again) to be with them, as they really need the extra attention now. The kittens like to watch me work, sitting on my shoulders as I generate reports, and I’m going to miss them like crazy when I have to return to the office.

  2. acflory says:

    Of course! Quite apart from the question of affection, mutual, there’s the boredom factor. My pets have a fair bit of land to run around in, and can come and go through a dog flap, so they rarely get ‘bored’ when I’m not home, but what of indoor pets? I think we need to invent a robot to keep our pets amused when we’re not available. 🙂

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