Manufacturers

Mars Petcare releases State of Pet Homelessness Index

The report highlighted that nearly two thirds (61%) of pet owners worry that when life returns to normal there will be more homeless pets than ever

Mars Petcare has released its first-ever State of Pet Homelessness Index which revealed that there are some 1.1 million homeless cats and dogs in the UK living in shelters or on the street.

The report highlighted that nearly two thirds (61%) of pet owners worry that when life returns to normal there will be more homeless pets than ever.

The survey revealed how there are several challenges for Brits looking to get a pet, such as prohibitive rental agreements, with almost two thirds (63%) of the general population reporting it to be difficult to own a dog when you live in an apartment.

The report also identified issues with negative perceptions of animals from shelters and stray populations, with 36% of people revealing they would not consider adopting from a shelter and a quarter (25%) believing that stray dogs are a “danger to them”.

Kim Smet, interim general manager, Mars Petcare UK, said: “Until now, there was no way to measure and track the scale of the issue comprehensively in the UK. That’s why we are proud to share the State of Pet Homelessness Index, so that anyone working towards this goal can measure the impact of their work in shelters and with stray cats and dogs.

“We know this is just the start and welcome additional input and insights from organisations who also want to help end pet homelessness.”

Claire Bessant, chief executive, International Cat Care, added: “This global Index is a great first step in understanding the complexity of pet homelessness so we can better address the issue and focus solutions in a way that will help inform us about the issue.

“The Index has helped highlight that a feline-specific approach to cat homelessness is essential in tackling this issue – something we at International Cat Care are committed to advancing. Many people don’t realise there are important differences between the needs of homeless cats and dogs.”

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