NEW YORK — Being a new dog owner can be an adventurous time, whether you want it to be or not! A new survey finds the first year of dog ownership will see six pairs of chewed shoes, five emergency visits to the vet, and six mad dashes to freedom out the front door.
The OnePoll survey asked 2,000 American dog owners about the impact their four-legged friend has had on their lives, regardless of the growing pains. Respondents spent an average of $122.32 preparing their homes for the arrival of their fur baby. Owners also devoted 11 hours a week to training them.
Commissioned by DOGTV, the survey reveals that within their first year at home, respondents’ dogs went through 27 toys, destroyed four pieces of furniture, and slipped out of their leash six times.
Therapy dogs aren’t the only ones saving lives
From helping their owners through an average of three new jobs and three new homes, 64 percent of respondents don’t know where they’d be without their dog’s love and support. In fact, nearly seven in 10 respondents believe their dog knows them better than they know themselves.
The average respondent also agrees their dog has also helped them heal three broken hearts. It’s no surprise 61 percent say their dog is a better judge of character than they are. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, two in three people (68%) said their dog is the only reason they’ve kept their sanity during lockdown.
Sixty-four percent of those polled also worries about returning to their normal schedules (whenever that may be), fearing their companion could develop separation anxiety. Six in 10 American workers (about 1,800) even wish their workplace was dog-friendly so they wouldn’t have to part ways once quarantine ends.
Pups are working from home too!
This desire to keep Fido by their side isn’t just out of unconditional love. Over half (52%) of those working from home have struggled to keep their dog occupied during work hours. Respondents say their furry friend makes an appearance in four video calls a week with their office and they’ll vocally share their own ideas during another four conference calls.
Two in three Americans working remotely agree they want to provide more enrichment for their dog as the pandemic keeps them away from the office, but they just don’t know what else to do.
Don’t bother me human, I’m watching TV!
Forty-six percent of respondents do in fact turn on a dog enrichment program on the TV for their pup to keep them occupied. Another 32 percent let their pooch watch a random channel. This seems to work out for most respondents too, as 50 percent say their dog interacts and reacts to things on TV.
Another 58 percent even think their dog is more invested in their TV shows than they are!
“As everyone continues to stay at home, dogs need as much calming as humans do – whether it’s to keep them stimulated and occupied while working from home or to keep them calm and out of trouble when home alone,” a DOGTV spokesperson say.