I’m not going to lie, there are plenty of times that I have cancelled plans the day of because I’d rather stay at home. It was best said in “The Wizard of Oz” when Glynda has Dorothy repeat, “There’s no place like home” in order to get back to her family’s farm. There really is no place like home, especially when you have a furry friend waiting for you at home. Sometimes it’s not enough to dip out from the party early to go home and hang out with your pet. Sometimes it’s better to just skip the party and have a PJ party at home with your furry friend instead. That is what I’ve done on a number of occasions – just say no to the plans I made while in a festive mood and stay put with the pets. I thought I was an antisocial weirdo for a while, but according to a recent study, I’m not alone. There are plenty more people like me.
The leading pet genetics company which makes the Wisdom Panel dog DNA tests, Wisdom Health Genetics, actually just published their 2020 Pet Census survey which explored the human-pet bond. There were more than 13,000 pet owners who participated in the study which made up roughly 25,000 dogs and 6,000 cats. One of the biggest things that was noted was that 72% of dog owners admitted that they’d previously cancelled plans in order to stay at home with their pets. For cat owners, that number was lower at 32%. This has proved that animals are very much a part of the family, with 64% of pet owners saying just as much, citing their pets as being akin to either family or furry children.
Audrey Yoo, the general manager for Wisdom Health Genetics, shared through a press release that the findings of the Pet Census certainly shed light on how Americans hold their pets in high regards in terms of their bonds together. Her statement further added that “In the last 10 years, our pets have undergone an incredible lifestyle evolution. And they now play a central role in our own lives – whether they’re improving our metal health especially in these unique times or sharing a spot in our beds.”
The census further showed how people do indeed feel an enhanced sense of mental clarity thanks to their pets. The astonishing numbers show that 99% of dog owners as well as 96% of cat owners all say their pets are bright and cheery influences on their mental health. Adding to these soaring numbers, three quarters of pet owners have noted that the main reason they got their pets in the first place was to have someone to hang out with.
Perhaps that can spell positivity for shelter pets, since Wisdom Health Genetics shared that there has been a rise in pet adoptions, particularly dog adoptions. Since 2010, there has been a 16% increase in dog adoptions. And in 2020 alone, 63% of dog owners adopted their dogs from either a shelter or a rescue, while 51% of cat owners got their pets from a shelter or rescue. And that is wonderful – adopt don’t shop!