Has Spending More Time With Your Pet During Lockdown Been Positive For You And Your Pet?

We at The Insurance Emporium recently surveyed* 1000 pet owners who were newly working from home during the COVID-19 lockdown to see if the stereotypes of cats being aloof and friendly dogs were true.  Did cats resent sharing their space with their owner being around the house a lot more, whilst dogs were living their best lives and loving all the extra attention and walks?  Our survey also looked at whether spending more time with pets during lockdown had had any effect on pet owners too.

An overwhelming majority of people (61%) said their pets have had a positive impact on their health and wellbeing during the COVID-19 lockdown.  Almost half of the pet owners (45.5%) felt more bonded to their pets as a result of spending more time at home with them, and 30% even admitted to being fearful about how their pet would cope without them once lockdown ended.

What about productivity and pets whilst working from home? 

41% of pet owners felt their work productivity had increased because their pet was there, with just 15% saying their pet had made them less productive at work.

However, it seems that not everyone likes to see pets in a work setting, even during a lockdown!  Only around a third (32%) of people said they liked seeing their colleagues’ and clients’ pets in work video calls.  Those who did like seeing the pets in a work video call said it made their colleague or client seem more personable.

Are ‘cool cat’ and ‘friendly dog’ stereotypes true?   

It seems that not all cats are aloof, with over a third (35%) of cat owners saying their cat was more sociable and loving the extra attention during lockdown, and around a quarter of cat owners (26%) saying their feline was happier than before lockdown.  Only one fifth noticed that their cat was heading out of the house more than usual. 

Dogs really seemed to be living their best life under lockdown, with around 40% of dog owners saying their dog seemed happier, more sociable and loving the extra attention (37%) than before the COVID-19 lockdown.  Around a fifth of dog owners noticed that their dog was eating more than before.  Maybe this is not surprising given that the average dog was being walked for around an extra 28 minutes more each day compared to before lockdown.

Funny stories about pets in lockdown

The pet owners in our survey were asked to share embarrassing or funny stories about their pets during lockdown.  The experiences of those who answered will no doubt resonate in a lot of households which have pets!  Many stories reported family members queuing up to take the dog for a lockdown breakout walk; cats photobombing video conference calls and generally draping themselves over laptops; and dogs destroying valuable toilet paper, whilst barking at the most embarrassing times and chasing the cat.   We’d love to hear your funny pet-lockdown stories, please share them with us on our social media channels!

We’re still here for you, lockdown or no lockdown!

The Insurance Emporium’s Chief Executive Officer, Francis Martin, owner of two cats and a Bernese Mountain dog, said:

“As a pet owner myself, I have noticed that my pets seem to be loving the extra attention during lockdown.  As specialist pet insurance providers, it is very much business as usual for us regardless of lockdown and we are still here for our customers, both existing and new.  We totally understand that our customers want the best for their beloved pets should the unexpected happen and, as award-winning pet insurers, having insurance cover is one consideration that might help provide some welcome peace of mind.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call our friendly and well-trained Customer Contact team on 03300 244 005.”

* The research was conducted by Censuswide between 28.04.2020 – 30.04.2020. The survey contacted with 1000 Pet owners who are currently working from home but have not worked from home in the past in UK. Censuswide abide by and employ members of the Market Research Society which is based on the ESOMAR principles. 

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