Pet Ownership Statistics & Facts in 2022

Written by: Annemarie Dutton
Last updated on:

We All Love Pets

Pets play an important role in a family. They provide comfort, entertainment, and companionship to both adults and children. Sometimes pets are gifted to kids to learn how to take care of and be compassionate with another living being. 

The most common pets around the world are dogs, cats, fish, and birds. We are going to examine several statistics on pet ownership from recent years to help us analyze more about them.

What Are The Most Common Pets in the US?

We’ll start off with pet ownership in the US. The table below showcases the number of US households that own each pet. These numbers are gathered by the APPA National Pet Owners Survey for 2021-22. Unsurprisingly dogs and cats top the table.

PetNumber (millions)
Freshwater fish11.8
Saltwater fish2.9

How Much Does It Cost to Own a Cat or Dog?

Furthermore, the APPA survey for 2021-22 has collected data on average expenses for dogs and cats. The expenses are divided into several main categories and highlight the differences between the two animals as well as where most of the money for pets has gone in the past 12 months. Notably, the expenses for cats are lower in every category, with only treats and toys coming close between dogs and cats.

Surgical Vet Visits$458$201
Routine Vet$242$178
Food treats$81$72
Kennel Boarding$228$78
Grooming aids/brushes$47$31

Millennials Make a Third of Current Pet Owners

The national pet owners survey also gathered data about pet ownership by generation. The population was divided into  Builder (1928-1945), Boomer (1946-1964), Gen X (1965-1980), Millennials (1981-1996), and Gen Z(1997-2012). The survey is conducted in the US only.

More Households Own Pets Now than Before 

Pet ownership in America has seen a drastic increase from the 80s to the early 2010s. Since 2013, however, the percentage of US households with pets has remained relatively the same.


Pet Insurance Costs

Insurance is an important aspect of owning a pet. Although it has been neglected by a lot of owners, recently more attention has been paid to it. It is interesting to see how the insurance premiums have changed over the years for cats and dogs. The trends are similar for both sets of animals, however, dog insurance remains more expensive. 


In conclusion, pet ownership in the US is mainly composed of households owning cats and dogs, with birds, fish, and reptiles following after that. The overall percentage of US households having a pet has increased since the 80s but has remained steady over the last 10 years. 

Nearly a third of owners are part of the Millenial generation, born between 1981 and 1996. Baby Boomers and Gen X each comprise about a quarter of pet owners, while Gen Z and the Builder generation are the smallest portions of owners. This is probably due to the fact that they are the oldest and youngest generations out of all. 

Dogs have significantly higher expenditures compared to cats, with surgical and routine vet visits contributing the most. Food is also one of the highest expenditures and kennel boarding is much more costly for dogs than for cats. Between 2013 and 2018, insurance cost for both cats and dogs has increased, but they have dropped over the last period for the former.

2021-2022 APPA National Pet Owners Survey
Statistics [2022]: US Pet Population

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