Nine out of ten owners are buying Christmas gifts for pets this year with almost a fifth admitting they will be spending more on their pet than their mother-in-law.
An RSPCA poll of almost 900 pet owners revealed most (54%) will be spending up to £10 on their pet’s present but some will be splurging more than £50.
With about 18 million cats, dogs and rabbits in the UK owners are expected to clock up an estimated £300 million on gifts for their furry friends.
The survey also revealed:
- 55% of pets will have a Christmas stocking
- A quarter of pets (26%) have an advent calendar
- One in ten pets (10%) will be watching the Queen’s speech
- Most owners (53%) spend more on their pet than on their colleague
- A third (39%) spent more on their pet than their friend
- 18% spend more on their pet than their mother-in-law
- 7% spend more on their pet than their partner and 3% spend more on their pet than their child.
Darren Parrish, manager of the RSPCA South Godstone Animal Centre in Surrey, said: “It’s lovely to hear that a vast majority of pet owners consider them to be part of the family and really include them in the Christmas celebrations.
“It goes to show we really are nation of animal lovers with nine out ten owners buying their pet a pressie, a quarter having an advent calendar and more than half having a Christmas stocking.
“It’s amazing that animals lovers will be spending about £300 million on their pets this year – that would pay for Christmas dinner for our animals until the next millennium.”
Mr Parrish is buying his two pet cats and two dogs Christmas presents this year, and is encouraging animal lovers to treat the animals in his centre to Christmas dinner too.
A lot of human food is actually poisonous to dogs – so the Christmas dinner will be a carefully selected to ensure it is safe for them.
“It would be wonderful if animal lovers could share a bit of their festive joy with some of the RSPCA’s 4,600 animals spending Christmas in our centres this year.
“As little as £3 could feed an RSPCA cat or dog at Christmas or maybe you could think about offering one of our animals a place in your family. Who knows maybe you could be watching the Queen’s Speech with your RSPCA rescue pet next year.”