Spending on pets increases with the over-65s leading the way

A new study shows that household spending is back up to pre-recession levels, and one of the leading categories is pets and pet food. Find out how our spending habits have changed in the last 15 years.

18th January 2018

A new study by the Office for National Statistics has shown that household spending has increased, and is now matching our habits from before the recession. Interestingly this seems to be great news for our pets!

The over-65s are leading the way in consumer spending, who spend around a fifth of their disposable income on “recreation and culture” which includes pets and pet food. This category seems to be one which has largely continued to trend upwards over the last 15 years, while spending on restaurants, hotels, alcoholic drinks and tobacco products diminishes. As we’ve discussed in the past, the modern pet owner is more likely to view their pet as a member of the family. In fact our survey in December found that we spend more money on Christmas presents for our pets than we do for our friends. It’s little wonder that our love for animals seems to defy most financial trends.

Average weekly household spending on pets has risen to £5.40, being one of the most rapidly increasing sub-categories studied.

Another study by Opinium claims that UK pet owners spend over £11.6 billion on pets annually, with the largest spend being vet’s bills. With the average pet insurance claim being a whopping £720, it’s hardly surprising that trips to the vet are costing uninsured owners so dearly. As vet’s fees are more or less unregulated they go up year upon year, often leaving owners stuck with difficult choices to make about the ongoing health and treatment of their beloved pets.

Pet ownership is one of the greatest joys we can experience as humans, and it’s only natural to do our best to give our animals an incredible life. Whether that means splashing the cash or doing what we can on a shoestring budget, Animal Friends has policies to suit you and your pet. 

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Animal Friends Insurance is a multi-award winning FCA-regulated pet insurer, founded in 1998 to provide industry-leading pet insurance and first-class animal care to create a better life for every animal.
As one of the UK’s largest pet insurance providers, Animal Friends works with vets, veterinary professionals, and partners pioneering the latest veterinary technology & healthcare advancements to achieve our vision.
Our policyholders have helped donate over £8.5 million to more than 800 animal charities worldwide and by educating and inspiring others to act on current events and responsible pet ownership, Animal Friends is driving positive change for animal welfare and conservation.