Pet Ownership Facts and Stats in 2022


Recent pet ownership statistics show that one in five American households have invited a new cat or dog into their home during the COVID-19 pandemic. About 23 million people have added a furry family member during this time and most have every intention of continuing to care for the animal. But owning a pet involves more than just figuring out where to find the right pet and choosing a companion. It also involves making decisions about finances, insurance, and animal care.

Pet Owner Statistics

Pet ownership statistics show that ownership levels have reached new highs in the past two years. A 2021-2022 survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA) found that 70% of households own a pet. Of the 70%, there are 69 million US households that own a dog versus 45.3 million households that own a cat.

  • Also consider these other pet ownership stats:
  • The number of pet owners continues to increase. 56% of households owned a pet in 1988, compared to 70% today.
  • Spending on pet products, care and services increased to more than $103 billion in 2020 from $97 billion in 2019.
  • During the pandemic, about 30% of Americans have adopted at least one pet.
  • Pet insurance gross premiums reached nearly $2 billion in 2020, up from $1.6 billion in 2019.
  • 83% of pet insurance premiums covered dogs in 2020.

Adopt vs Shop

When a household decides to add a new pet to the family, there are often questions about whether it is best to rescue it from another home or shelter, or purchase it from a breeder. Every pet deserves a loving home, so it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of each scenario before making a decision.

Rescue Breeder
Pro Con Pro Con
Often more affordable than breeder pets Veterinary expenses and behavioral training can offset lower initial adoption costs More flexibility to search for a desired breed Often at a higher price
Shelters have a variety of pets with different breeds and temperaments You may not find the exact breed you prefer Pets are usually bred for specific, desirable traits Breeders may have a waiting list for certain litters
Rescue dogs may already have basic training and skills Pet’s history may be unknown, including past health care or abuse You will probably know more about the medical history Puppies require additional medical fees in the first year
Older animals can still be trained The animal may have special needs that the shelter is not aware of Many breeders offer health guarantees, such as a guarantee against a genetic defect Finding a reputable breeder takes a lot of research

Key Adoption Statistics

  • While more than 3 million pets enter shelters each year, approximately 4.1 million pets are adopted. This includes 2 million dogs and approximately 2.1 million cats.
  • About 40% of dog owners and 46% of cat owners found their pet through word of mouth, such as through family and friends.
  • About a third of dog owners received information about their pet from a breeder, compared to 23% of dog owners who learned about their pet from a shelter.
  • While mixed breeds are the most common, 25% of dogs in shelters are purebred.
  • When choosing a pet, dogs are more likely to be purchased from a breeder, while cats are more likely to be adopted.
  • Black cats have the lowest adoption rates among cats.
  • Pit bulls and Chihuahuas have some of the lowest adoption rates and are usually eventually euthanized.
  • More than 920,000 shelter animals are euthanized each year, although this number has decreased from 2.6 million in 2011 due to increased adoption rates.
  • Behavioral and health issues are the most common causes of pet placement.
    • One way to reduce the likelihood of needing to rehome a pet is to have a clear understanding of all of the expenses associated with being a responsible pet owner prior to adoption.

Estimated cost of owning a pet

Initial Pet Fee

The table below illustrates the estimated cost breakdown of fees due at the time of adoption. Although these are based on shelter animals, many of these costs are comparable to buying through a breeder. Keep in mind that some of the costs are also recurring expenses, such as heartworm and flea medications, which may need to be purchased regularly.

The costs below are estimates. Pet adoption prices vary by shelter, age, breed and size of animal, according to Petfinder. Generally speaking, you can expect to pay around $425 to $880 for pet adoption costs.

Type of expense rescue dog rescue cat
Physical and behavioral exams $50-100 $50-100
Sterilization/sterilization $150-300 $150-300
microchip $50 $50
Basic vaccines $15-60 $15-60
Prevention of fleas and ticks $50-200 $50-200
Medical tests Heartworm tests: $15 to $35 Leukemia tests: $30 to $50
Total: $330-745 Total: $345 to $760

Buying from a breeder can add an even larger amount to the cost and fees, depending on the popularity of the breed. For example, French Bulldogs cost up to $4,000 on average, while Golden Retrievers cost up to $3,000 on average. Each breeder sets their own costs, which may or may not include fees such as neutering or neutering. Be sure to check the included costs ahead of time so you know which pet care measures have been taken by the breeder and which you may need to manage yourself.

Exotic dog breeds tend to be even more expensive due to their rarity and high medical costs. Rare breeds like a Samoyed, for example, could cost up to $14,000 according to estimates from Prudent Pet Insurance.

Recurring Pet Expenses

The costs of adopting or buying a pet can seem a little overwhelming at first, but the expenses are usually only higher than the first year of owning a pet. A pet’s weight and size are two influencing factors, as larger dogs and cats require higher amounts of food and higher doses of medication.

Petfinder has compiled a list of average common costs to consider when planning to add a new dog or cat to your home.

Type of expense Recurring Costs for Dogs Ongoing costs for cats
Food $120-500/year $120-500/year
Prevention of fleas and ticks $40-200 (depending on weight) $20-200 (depending on weight)
Vaccines and well-being $80-250/year $110-550/year
Emergency vet visit $300-1,000+ (depending on severity) $1,000+ (depending on severity)
Professional grooming Up to $1,200/year (depending on the coat) $300+/year (depending on the coat)
Training Around $250/year (for beginner courses) N / A
Pet sitting and boarding $15-50/day $15-50/day
Treats, toys and/or scratching posts $50-300 $0-50 (considering scrapers)
Bed and crate/carrier $25-250 (depending on size) $40-175 (depending on size)

Insure your pet and your belongings

As the number of pet owners increases, so does the interest in pet insurance. Pet insurance can fall into two different categories: pet insurance and/or property insurance, such as a homeowners insurance policy. Pet insurance is a separate policy that covers the medical expenses of a pet. With home insurance, coverage exists for pet liability such as a dog bite that occurs on your property.

Animal insurance

In addition to having adequate homeowners or renters insurance, you may want to consider adding pet insurance. Like regular health insurance, pet insurance is designed to cover medical expenses for needs ranging from poison ingestion to treatment of lacerations. Although pet insurance is optional, having it can prevent you from covering surprise vet bills out of pocket and could be especially helpful for accident-prone pets or pets with special needs. Some breeds have expensive medical histories, such as English Bulldogs, which often have eye problems.

Comparing multiple pet insurance policies can help you find both the right price and the right solution. Animal breed, age, weight and pre-existing conditions will all influence which type of policy is best for you and your pet.

Pet Insurance Key Statistics:

home insurance

Pet insurance focuses on your pet’s medical expenses, while a homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy covers medical expenses associated with animal bites. Although home insurance policies do not cover property damage caused by your pet (such as teeth or scratches), they do cover medical costs if someone needs treatment from a bite or injury. a scratch from your pet. Before you bring home a new pet, it’s a good idea to review the liability limits of your home or renter’s insurance policy in case someone else is injured by your pet during an accident. visit to your home.

Inviting a new pet into your home is a great way to add excitement and happiness to your atmosphere. However, this requires a financial commitment, including first-year costs and ongoing recurring expenses. In addition to adoption or breeding cost considerations, you also need to factor in medical care and food expenses. With the financial responsibility of owning a pet, finding additional coverage can be beneficial, such as adding pet insurance to your homeowners or renters insurance policy. Proper advance planning for a pet can help ensure that you and your pet’s needs are met.


Comments are closed.