Pet Ownership Statistics: How Many Dogs Are In The World?

Cat and dog looking at the sky (Caption: Pet Ownership Statistics)It’s no secret that we’re crazy about our pets. We write about every dog-related subject we can get our paws on, so we thought it would be fun to research pet ownership statistics and share them with you. We give you verified stats about pet ownership concerning location, cost, and demographics of pet parents.

Article Overview

How Many Dogs Are In The World?

Quote Form WidgetUnfortunately, this question is impossible to answer. Many countries have no registration process for animals. Not to mention the number of strays that populate the streets is unknown.

What we can share is that in 2018, there were an estimated 470 million pet dogs and 370 million pet cats worldwide.1 Keep in mind, this doesn’t include all the stray pets that wander the streets, so the cat and dog population is most likely much more significant than this.

In 2020, there were an estimated 89.82 million pet dogs in Europe.2 And in 2017, there were an estimated 84.6 million pet dogs in China, with the population estimated to exceed 136 million by 2022.3

How does the United States compare to these other countries? In 2017, there were an estimated 89.7 million pet dogs in the U.S.4 The dog population in the U.S. is steadily increasing, so it’s safe to assume that the number of dogs is higher than 89.7 million now.

How Many U.S. Households Own A Pet?

Americans are fond of having furry (or scaly or feathery) pets in their homes. In 2019-2020, 67% of U.S. households owned a pet, which is an estimated 84.9 million homes. Dogs were by far the most common pet, with 63.4 million homes owning a dog, followed closely by cats with 42.7 million homes. Other common pets in U.S. households include freshwater fish, birds, small animals, reptiles, horses, and saltwater fish.5

How Many U.S. Households Own A Pet?

Fun Fact

With dogs being the most popular pets for Americans, Labrador Retrievers are the most popular breed in the U.S. for the 30th year in a row.6

Pet Ownership Statistics By State

Rural areas tend to have higher percentages of pet ownership than urban areas. Wyoming has the highest rate of pet ownership at 72%, followed by West Virginia (71%) and Idaho, Nebraska, and Vermont (70%). States with the lowest rate of pet ownership include Rhode Island (45%), South Dakota (46%), and New Jersey (47%).4

Pet Ownership Statistics By State

Which States Have More Dogs vs Cats?

Wondering which places you are most likely to see cats or dogs?4

Most Dog Ownership:

  • Idaho (58%)
  • Arkansas (52%)
  • Montana (52%)
  • Mississippi (51%)
  • West Virginia (50%)

Most Cat Ownership:

  • Vermont (45%)
  • Maine (44%)
  • Indiana (38%)
  • West Virginia (38%)
  • New Hampshire (36%)

How Much Do Americans Spend On Pets?

We love our pets dearly and want them to have the comfiest bed, healthiest food, yummiest treats, best pet insurance, and most fun toys. But there are also necessities that our pets need like vet care, grooming, and medication. In 2020, U.S. pet industry expenditures totaled $103.6 billion. That number is estimated to increase to $109.6 billion in 2021. That’s an increase from $97.1 billion in 2019 and $90.5 billion in 2018.7

Estimated Dog Expenditures For 2021:

  • Pet food and treats: $44.1 billion
  • Vet care and products: $32.3 billion
  • Supplies: $23.4 billion
  • Boarding, grooming, insurance, training, sitting: $9.7 billion

Dog Expenditures In 2020:

  • Pet food and treats: $42.0 billion
  • Vet care and products: $31.4 billion
  • Supplies: $22.1 billion
  • Boarding, grooming, insurance, training, sitting: $8.1 billion

The average annual expense for dog parents totals $1,381 and $908 for cat parents, including surgical and routine vet visits, food, treats, boarding, vitamins, grooming, and toys.5

Dog Expenditures 2020 vs 2021

Annual Dog Expenses:

  • Surgical vet visits: $426
  • Food: $259
  • Kennel boarding: $229
  • Routine vet visits: $212
  • Treats: $76
  • Grooming: $73
  • Vitamins: $58
  • Toys: $48

Annual Cat Expenses:

  • Food: $228
  • Surgical vet visits: $214
  • Routine vet visits: $160
  • Kennel boarding: $120
  • Treats: $58
  • Vitamins: $54
  • Grooming: $43
  • Toys: $31

How Much Do Americans Spend On Pets?

Pet Owner Demographics In The U.S.

Here are some quick stats from 2016 about pet parent demographics.4

  • The following percentages of owners had household incomes higher than $55,000:
    • 56% of horse owners
    • 52% of dog owners
    • 47% of cat owners
    • 41% of bird owners
  • Number of annual visits to the vet (on average):
    • Dogs: 3
    • Cats: 2.4
    • Horses: 2.8
  • Households with pets by racial and ethnic type:
    • 64.7% White
    • 61.4% Latino/Hispanic
    • 36.9% Black/African-American

What Type Of Home Do Pet Owners Live In?

The highest rate of pet ownership is among households living in mobile homes (73.8%), followed by houses (65.8%). The lowest rates appear among those living in apartments, condos, duplexes, and other multiple-family residences.4

Cat Owners vs Dog Owners

Did you know cat owners differ from dog owners, on average?8

Dog Parents:

  • Watch more romcoms, horror, and action films
  • 2x as likely to work in finance and tend to earn more money than cat owners
  • Enjoy sports, yoga, dancing, and travel

Cat Parents:

  • Watch more documentaries, musicals, or indie films
  • Are more creative and 4x more likely to work in a creative field than dog owners
  • Enjoy reading, writing, and gardening

Dog Owners vs Cat Owners

Pet Insurance Statistics

Pets are loved across the world. It doesn’t matter where you live, what your income is, or what your ethnic background is. Pets make this world a better place.

If you enjoy reading about pet statistics, you may like to read our pet insurance statistics. You can learn more about health-related expenses associated with dogs and how pet insurance can help pay for these costly, unexpected vet visits.

Was there a stat that you were surprised by? Which one?

Sources: [1] Statista, [2] Statista, [3] Statista, [4] AVMA, [5] APPA, [6] AKC, [7] APPA, [8] Mars Petcare