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Sluggish economy: While dogs are declining as pets, cats are on the rise

By Gary Bogue
Friday, January 23rd, 2009 at 6:57 am in Cats, dogs, Pets.

Newman the cat

Dear Gary:
The Obama family will soon join the 39 percent of U.S. households who own a dog, but the rest of the nation won’t be adopting as readily.

According to industry research firm IBISWorld, the total number of household pets (cats and dogs) will grow at a meager 3 percent from 2008-2013, (compared to 3.5 percent from 2002-2007) reaching 195 million. The drop in growth will likely be attributed to sluggish economic growth and an increase in the relative cost of pet care.

Newman the cat

While a dog is the Obama family’s pet of choice, increasing trend of single-person households, longer working hours and the aging population are expected to slow the growth of dogs and increase the number of cats as pets — due to higher maintenance of this animal.

Overall 18 percent of cats are adopted from animal shelters, compared to 10 percent of dogs. With this said, pet store revenue is expected to decrease 0.7 percent in 2009.

If you’d like more information on this trend, please feel free to contact me.
Savannah Haspel, Vice President — Media Relations, IBISWorld Inc.

Dear Savannah:
Sluggish economy or not, 195 billion pets in this country by 2013 is still a LOT of pets … and you say the majority of them will be cats. Now THAT’s scary.

Thanks for the information. /Gary

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No Responses to “Sluggish economy: While dogs are declining as pets, cats are on the rise”

  1. Gayle Reece Says:

    Our dogs, cats, birds, and other pets make dealing with the hard times easier. Yes, they’re expensive but they earn a place in our homes by giving us a smile everyday. A wagging tail, contented purrr, or cheery “hello” is nice to come home to.

  2. Pat in Antioch Says:

    I wonder WHY exactly this is happening. Seems to me that both would need food, health care etc. I’ve never added it up, but I don’t imagine my cats cost any less than my dog did…..unless we’re taklking about when her health started to fail, THEN she was more costly, but I GLADLY paid it. The cats may be in the same predicament one day, and I’ll pay that too. Interesting though, but I don’t see a big difference in maintenance either way. GREAT picture of Newman Gary! He looks so relaxed; must have taken it when Jasmine was at the vets! Hope she’s doing well after her surgery!

    Pat in Antioch

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