2023 Pet Ownership Statistics

It’s no secret that Americans love their pets. In fact, approximately 69 million households own a dog, 45 million have a cat, and almost 12 million own a fish, according to Statista.

Many Americans became pet “pawrents” during the COVID-19 pandemic, with 23 million (almost 1 in 5 nationwide) adopting a pet during the pandemic. We surveyed American pet owners to find out just how much they spoil their pets in 2023.

United States of Pets

Most pet owners (31%) solely have dogs, and just over 1 in 4 (26%) only have cats. One in five American pet owners (21%) have both cats and dogs. The other most popular pets include fish (9%), birds (6%), reptiles (5%), rodents (4%), bunnies/rabbits (2%), and horses (1%).

Most (35%) American pet owners have just one pet. Almost one in three pet owners (29%) have two pets, and the remaining have three or more. In fact, 15% have 5 or more pets (we might call that a zoo!).

The COVID-19 pandemic afforded many who always wanted a pet the opportunity to get one, with more flexibility at work and the ability to move somewhere more spacious. With lockdowns between March 2020 and December 2020 leaving many Americans lonely, our survey found 28% of pet owners adopted at least one of their pets during this time period.

When asked why Americans got their pet or pets, the top reason was for companionship and love (86%), because they always wanted one (40%), for their mental health (39%), and for fun (39%). Nearly one in six (15%) say they were able to get a pet because their lifestyle changed.

With great pets comes great responsibility. Americans are taking it seriously – over 1 in 5 American pet owners consider themselves a “crazy pet parent”.

Pet $pending

Pets aren’t all fun and games – they can also cost a pretty penny. When it comes to necessities, the most common things Americans buy for their pets are food (100%), toys (87%), litter (57%), enrichment (49%), and vitamins/supplements (46%). Other expenses include collars, tags and leashes (38%), costumes and accessories (23%), carriers and crates (14%), insurance (12%) and a care giver, sitter or walker (11%).

According to our survey, pet owners spend an average of $109.12 on these necessities per pet every month. That’s about $1,309.44 each year – which can quickly add up! Pet owners spend an additional $525.10 every year on veterinary bills per pet. That’s almost $2,000 a year per pet on necessities and healthcare!

When asked what the top expenses for their pets are, owners say veterinary bills (51%), followed by food (36%), the initial cost of purchasing the pet (5%), medications and vitamins (3%), and grooming (2%).

It feels like the cost of everything has gone up – and pet supplies are no exception. Almost half (49%) of pet owners are feeling they’ve spent more money on their pets in 2022 than in previous years.

Pet Insurance

Veterinary bills and medicine can be especially expensive for our furry friends. The popularity of pet insurance may be on the rise, with more and more employers offering pet insurance to employees.

While pet owners may be spending more than $525 each year on vet bills per animal, pet insurance can help save money. Just for the sake of comparison, the average monthly quote for pet insurance through Insuranks is $25. Assuming this is the coverage that pet owners have, and assuming they’re spending about $525 annually on vet bills, insurance would allow a savings of about $225 per animal each year.

Currently, 17% of pet owners have pet insurance, and the majority of those with insurance agree that it’s worth it. Almost half (45%) say pet insurance has helped cover a procedure or medication they wouldn’t have been able to afford otherwise.

Of those pet owners who don’t have pet insurance, 40% wish they did, and 22% plan to get pet insurance sometime in the future.


Pampered Pet

We also surveyed pet parents to find out how truly spoiled some of America’s pets are. At least one in five pet parents have bought something lavish for their pet.

The most bought extravagant pet supplies are merchandise with a pet’s photo on it (19%), luxury pet products (12%), a pet portrait (10%), clothing with a pet’s photo on it (8%), a robot litter box (7%), and even a pet DNA test (6%).

When it comes to being a “pawrent”, there’s love… and then there’s downright obsession. The most common pet parent habits include sleeping in bed with a pet (80%), buying a Christmas gift for a pet (65%), sharing food or beverages (60%), celebrating a pet’s birthday (56%), and taking a road trip with a pet (54%).

Other common pet parent habits include taking a pet to a public park or beach (54%), buying high-end food or supplements (43%), buying a personalized tag (36%), canceling plans with friends to hang out with a pet (20%), and having a pet room in their home (16%).

While it can be tempting to buy a luxury collar, a Halloween costume, or extravagant treats for your pet – remember that pets can (and do) get sick, and you may be better off investing in pet insurance sooner than later. There’s nothing wrong with spoiling your pet, and they deserve nothing but the best.



In October 2022, we surveyed 500 American pet owners on their pet expenses and ownership habits. Respondents were aged 18 to 75 years old, with an average age of 40 years old. Respondents were 49% male, 50% female, and 1% transgender/non-binary.

For media inquiries, please contact media@digitalthirdcoast.net.

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When using this data and research, please attribute by linking to this study and citing https://www.insuranks.com/ 

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