PDSA is warning that the continuing trend of owners doing no pre-purchase research before acquiring a pet is risking the long term health and welfare of millions of animals.
The warning comes as the eighth annual PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report is published. The PAW Report, created in conjunction with YouGov, surveyed over 68,000 veterinary professionals, pet owners and young people since its launch in 2011.
This year the charity also teamed up with BVA and BVNA, using findings from their ‘Voice of the Profession’ surveys within the report.
The 2018 Report has revealed that 5.2 million (around one in four or 24 per cent) UK pet owners undertook no research at all before taking on their pet, showing no improvement since 2016. Similarly, just five per cent of owners (one in twenty or 1.1 million) took advice from a veterinary professional ahead of their purchase, despite 71 per cent of practices offering pre-purchase advice as part of routine consultations.
Commenting on the PAW Report findings, PDSA senior vet Rebecca Ashman, said: “This year’s PAW Report highlights that impulse-buying of pets, with varying knowledge of their long terms needs, is a continuing trend that is unfortunately showing no signs of improving. Lack of pre-purchase research leaves owners ill-prepared for pet ownership.
“Sadly this is inadvertently leading to pet’s 5 Welfare Needs not being properly met and by extension is causing an array of welfare issues from behaviour problems and chronic stress to inappropriate housing and obesity for the UK’s dogs, cats and rabbits.”
To download a free copy of the PDSA PAW Report, click HERE: