Industry News

Dog owners spending less on pets due to energy costs

Dog owners have been cutting back how much they spend on their pets because of increased energy costs, new research reveals.

Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) found that nearly half of adults in the country – equating to around 220,000 adults – had cut back on household spending, and 10% of those were reducing things like dog grooming and even vet visits as a result.

The Scottish SPCA said more than 4,000 people contacted its animal helpline in 2022 to give up their pet. That number has more than trebled from 2021, with many citing financial circumstances as the main factor in being unable to care for their pet anymore.

David Hilferty, CAS Social Justice Spokesperson, said: “People are having to cut back on spending because of rising energy bills and the wider cost of living crisis, and that might mean less care for pets. This isn’t a trivial issue, for many people their dog or cat is their companion and a source of comfort against loneliness and isolation.

“Cutting back on vet appointments or grooming to keep them clean will be a really emotional decision that will leave people feeling distressed. We would encourage anyone worried about the cost of bills to seek help from the Citizens Advice network.”

Citizens Advice is running Big Energy Saving Winter, a campaign encouraging people worried about energy bills and the cost of living to seek advice.

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