Pet Population and Ownership Trends in the U.S., 6th Edition

Pet Population and Ownership Trends in the U.S., 6th Ed.

In the wake of COVID-19, pet ownership rates in the U.S. have plateaued. The percentage of U.S. households owning pets slipped slightly from 54% in 2018 to 52% in 2022, for a current total of 68 million pet-owning households.

There is no debate over a pandemic-fueled spike in pet care spending in recent years, and a pet adoption bump did occur in response to the sudden stay-at-home/work-from-home dynamics of this COVID-19 era. Nonetheless, as detailed in this report from pet market research leader Packaged Facts, the peak years of pet population gains occurred in the middle of the past decade, rather than post-COVID in the early 2020s.

Focusing on dogs and cats, Pet Population and Ownership Trends in the U.S. provides a comprehensive and up-to-date analysis of pet ownership rates, pet population characteristics, and pet owner demographics. This report also provides topline coverage of ownership rates for other types of pets (fish, small mammals, herptiles, and birds).

In addition to laying out key pet owner psychographics and their market implications, this report covers post-pandemic pet acquisition trends by nature of pet adoption (planned, impulse, gift), type of pet, source of pet adoption or acquisition, age of dogs or cats adopted, and size of dogs adopted.

This report includes numerous detailed tables showing historically trended household ownership rates and pet-owner demographics across several metrics:

  • by ownership of dogs and/or cats, dogs, cats, and dogs as well as cats
  • by number of dogs or cats owned
  • by age of dogs or cats owned
  • by size (in lbs.) of dogs owned
The analysis in this report also covers demographic changes—from pre-COVID 2017 to post-COVID 2022—in the key pet owner variables of gender(s) in household, generational cohort, race/ethnicity, household income, household composition by marital status and presence/absence of children, and type of residence.

Methodology

In addition to drawing on Packaged Facts’ extensive catalog of pet reports, Pet Population and Ownership Trends in the U.S. features proprietary Packaged Facts consumer survey results from January through August of 2022, along with Spring 2022 and historically trended syndicated pet ownership data from MRI-Simmons. Topline coverage of pets other than dogs or cats includes American Pet Products Association (APPA) 2021-2022 National Pet Owners Survey data.


  • Executive Summary
    • Scope and Methodology
      • Two Consumer Survey Sources
    • Pet Ownership Overview
      • Pet Population Overview
        • Table Topline Pet Ownership Rates by Type, 2018 – 2022P (percent of overall households)
      • Key Pet Owner Psychographics
      • Overall Pet Acquisition Trends: Dogs, Cats, Other Pets
      • Overall Pet Owner Demographics
    • Pet Population Projections
      • Economic and Consumer Factors
        • Table Household Pet Ownership Rates, 2018 vs. 2022P vs. 2026P (percent)
    • Focus on Dogs and Cats
      • Dog or Cat Ownership Demographics
      • Dog and Cat Ownership Demographics
      • Dog Ownership Trends
      • Cat Ownership Trends
    • Focus on Other Pets
      • Topline Ownership Rates and Customer Base
  • Pet Ownership Overview
    • Chapter Highlights
    • Pet Population Overview
      • Topline Pet Ownership Rates and Customer Base
        • Table Topline Pet Ownership Rates by Type, 2018 – 2022P (percent of overall households)
        • Table Number of Pet-Owning Households by Type, 2018 – 2022P (in millions)
      • Mixed Pet Ownership Trends in Wake of COVID-19
        • Table Topline Pet Ownership Growth, 2011/12 - 2021/22 (number of pet-owning households and percentage growth)
        • Table Pet Ownership Rates: Overall and by Dog/Cat Ownership, 2018/19 - 2021/22 (percent of overall households)
        • Table Number of Pet-Owning Households: Overall and by Dog/Cat Ownership, 2018/19 – 2021/22 (in thousands)
      • Increase in Upper-Income, Decrease in Lower-Income Pet Owners
    • Key Pet Owner Psychographics
      • Pet Parenting and Pets as Family
      • Pet Parenting Day and Night
      • The Pet Market as Health Market
        • Table Level of Agreement with Statement: “My pets are important to my physical/mental health,” January 2022 (percent of dog, cat, and other pet owners)
      • Pet Parents Hunt for Pet Health Products
      • Addressing Pet Stress Among Dogs and Cats
      • Addressing Aging, Weight Conditions of Dogs and Cats
      • Veterinarians’ Status as Pet Care Arbiters Is Under Pressure
        • Table Most Important Sources of Pet Care Information: By Generational Cohort, 2022 (percent)
      • Pet Food as Health Care
      • Telemedicine and “Smart” Health Product Trends
        • Table Levels of Agreement with Selected Veterinary Care Statements: By Generational Cohort, 2022 (percent)
      • Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility
    • Overall Pet Acquisition Trends: Dogs, Cats, Other Pets
      • Pet Acquisition Sequence by Type of Pet
        • Table Sequence of Pet Acquisition by Type of Pet, 2022 (percent)
      • Industry-Wide Focus on Pet Adoption
      • Annual Pet Acquisition Trends
        • Table Changes in Household Levels of Pet Ownership Compared with Previous Year, 2020 vs. 2021 (percent of pet owners who have had pets 2+ years)
        • Table Types of Pets Adopted/Acquired in Last 12 Months, 2020-2022 (percent of households)
      • Pet Acquisition Patterns by Type
        • Table Types of Pets Adopted/Acquired Since 2021 (percent of households)
      • Age of Dogs Adopted
        • Table Age of Dogs/Cats Adopted in Last 12 Months, 2022 (percent of recent dog/cat adopters)
      • Size of Dogs/Cats Adopted
        • Table Size of Dogs Adopted in Last 12 Months, 2022 (percent of recent dog adopters)
      • Impulse vs. Planned: Nature of Pet Acquisition
        • Table Nature of Pet Acquisition in Last 12 Months: By Type of Pet, 2022 (percent of recent pet acquirers)
      • Sources of Pet Acquisition
        • Table Source of Pet Acquisition in Last 12 Months: By Type of Pet, 2022 (percent of recent pet acquirers)
      • Influencers on Pet Adoption
        • Table Influencer on Pet Acquisition in Last 12 Months: By Type of Pet, 2022 (percent of recent pet acquirers)
    • Overall Pet Owner Demographics
      • Key Demographic Variables to Pet Ownership Rates
        • Table Pet Ownership Rates by Key Demographic Variables, Spring 2022 (percent who own, percent of owners, number of households in thousands, and index)
      • Key Demographic Variables and Pet Ownership Growth
        • Table Pet Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Adult Gender(s) in Household, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Pet Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Generational Cohort, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Pet Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Race/Ethnicity, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Pet Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Income, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Pet Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Composition, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Pet Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Type/Kind of Residence, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
    • Detailed Demographic Tables for Pet Ownership Overall
      • Ownership Rates and Customer Base
        • Table Ownership Rates for Any Pets: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
        • Table Customer Base for Ownership of Any Pets: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
    • Pet Population Projections
      • Table Pet Owner Population by Race and Ethnicity, 2018 – 2022 (number in thousands)
      • Table Household Population Composition Patterns, 2018 vs. 2028P (number in millions and percent of total)
      • Table Homeowner Population Composition Patterns, 2018 vs. 2028P (number in millions, percent of homeowners, and percent of households)
      • Table National and Pet Owner Population of Households with Income of $100,000 or more, 2013 – 2022 (number in thousands)
      • Table Household Pet Ownership Rates, 2018 vs. 2022P vs. 2026P (percent)
  • Focus on Dogs and Cats
    • Chapter Highlights
    • Dog or Cat Ownership Demographics
      • Topline Ownership Rates and Customer Base
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership, 2018/19 - 2021/22 (percent and number of overall households)
      • Key Demographic Variables to Dog or Cat Ownership Rates
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership Rates by Key Demographic Variables, Spring 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
      • Key Demographic Variables and Dog or Cat Ownership Growth
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Adult Gender(s) in Household, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Generational Cohort, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Race/Ethnicity, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Income, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Composition, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Type/Kind of Residence, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
    • Detailed Demographic Tables for Ownership of Dogs or Cats
      • Ownership Rates and Customer Base
        • Table Dog or Cat Ownership Rates: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
        • Table Dog or Cat Owner Customer Base: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
    • Dog and Cat Ownership Demographics
      • Topline Ownership Rates and Population
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership, 2018/19 - 2021/22 (percent and number of overall households)
      • Key Demographic Variables to Dog + Cat Ownership Rates
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership Rates by Key Demographic Variables, Spring 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
      • Key Demographic Variables and Dog and Cat Ownership Growth
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Adult Gender(s) in Household, 2017, 2019, 202 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Generational Cohort, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Race/Ethnicity, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Income, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Composition, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, number in thousands, and share of total owners)
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Type/Kind of Residence, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
    • Detailed Demographic Tables for Ownership of Dogs and Cats
      • Ownership Rates and Customer Base
        • Table Dog and Cat Ownership Rates: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
        • Table Dog and Cat Owner Customer Base: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
    • Dog Ownership Trends
      • Topline Ownership Rates and Population
        • Table Dog Ownership, 2018/19 - 2021/22 (percent and number of overall households)
      • Trends by Number of Dogs Owned
        • Table Household Ownership Rates for Dogs: Overall and by Number of Dogs, 2018/19 – 2021/22 (percent of U.S. households)
        • Table Dog Ownership Distribution by Number of Dogs, 2018/19 – 2021/22 (percent of dog-owning households)
        • Table Household Base of Dog Owners: Overall and by Number of Dogs, 2018/19 - 2021/22 (in thousands)
      • Over Half of Dog Owners Have Senior Dogs
        • Table Percent of Dog-Owning Households With Puppies Under Age 1 or Senior Dogs Age 7+, 2011/22 – 2021/22 (percent)
      • Trend Away From Smallest Dogs
        • Table Distribution of Dog-Owning Households by Size of Dogs, 2011/12 – 2021/22 (percent of dog owners)
      • Most Popular Breeds of Dog Owned
      • Overweight and Special Needs Dogs
        • Table Share of Dog Owners Who Report Having Overweight, Special Needs, or Handicapped Dogs, 2022 (percent)
    • Dog Ownership Demographics
      • Key Demographic Variables to Dog Ownership Rates
        • Table Dog Ownership Rates by Key Demographic Variables, Spring 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
      • Key Demographic Variables and Dog Ownership Growth
        • Table Dog Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Adult Gender(s) in Household, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Generational Cohort, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Race/Ethnicity, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, number in thousands, and share of total owners)
        • Table Dog Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Income, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Composition, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Dog Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Type/Kind of Residence, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
    • Detailed Demographic Tables for Dog Ownership
      • Ownership Rates and Customer Base
        • Table Dog Ownership Rates: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
        • Table Dog Owner Customer Base: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
    • Cat Ownership Trends
      • Topline Ownership Rates and Population
        • Table Cat Ownership, 2018/19 - 2021/22 (percent and number of overall households)
      • Cats Gain Market Representation
      • Trends by Number of Cats Owned
        • Table Household Ownership Rates for Cats: Overall and by Number of Cats, 2018/19 - 2021/22 (percent of U.S. households)
        • Table Cat Ownership Distribution by Number of Cats, 2018/19 - 2021/22 (percent of cat-owning households)
        • Table Household Base of Cat Owners: Overall and by Number of Cats, 2018/19 – 2021/22 (in thousands)
      • Size of Cats Owned
      • Growth in Share of Cat Owners with Senior Cats
        • Table Percentage of Cat-Owning Households With Kittens Under Age 1 or Senior Cats Age 7+, 2011/12 – 2021/22 (percent)
      • Overweight and Special Needs Cats
        • Table Share of Cat Owners Who Report Having Overweight, Special Needs, or Handicapped Cats, 2022 (percent)
    • Cat Ownership Demographics
      • Key Demographic Variables to Cat Ownership Rates
        • Table Cat Ownership Rates by Key Demographic Variables, Spring 2022 (percent who own, percent of owners, number of households in thousands, and index)
      • Key Demographic Variables and Cat Ownership Growth
        • Table Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Adult Gender(s) in Household, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Generational Cohort, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Race/Ethnicity, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Income, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Household Composition, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
        • Table Cat Ownership Trends by Key Demographic Variables: Type/Kind of Residence, 2017, 2019, 2022 (percent who own, share of total owners, and number of households in thousands)
    • Detailed Demographic Tables for Cat Ownership
      • Ownership Rates and Customer Base
        • Table Cat Ownership Rates: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
        • Table Cat Owner Customer Base: By Demographic, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, and Spring 2022 (number in thousands)
  • Focus on Other Pets
    • Chapter Highlights
    • Topline Ownership Rates and Customer Base
      • 14% of Households Own “Other Pets”
        • Table Topline Pet Ownership Rates by Type, 2018 – 2022P (percent of overall households)
      • A Return to Form for Other Pets
        • Table Household Ownership Rates: Pets Other Than Dogs and Cats by Type, 2022 (percent of households)
      • Types of Freshwater Fish Owned
      • Types of Birds Owned
      • Types of Herptiles Owned
      • Types of Small Mammals Owned

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