Dogs are man’s best friend, but dog training for most of their owners, is not an easy task. Fully 85% of dog owners say they consider their pet to be a member of their family, according to a Pew Research Center survey.
Dog training our four-legged-family-members
Our four-legged family members need our dog training help to explain things like Hurricane Katrina. Gulf Coast residents risked staying home, because they did not want to abandon their pets. This led to the explosive recent growth of the pet care industry.
Dog Owners Consider Their Pet to Be Family
The nationwide Pew survey of 3,014 adults finds that just about every breed of human owner considers their pet to be family. How is this explained?
For example, more women than men describe their dog or cat as a member of the family. So do those who aren’t parents, compared with those who have children. Dog owners who live in cities or suburbs are more likely to describe their dog or cat as a family member. Those who live in rural areas don’t feel that same way.
Nearly six-in-ten (57%) of all adults in this country will try dog training for their pet or pets. Research shows dog owners (39% of all adults) outnumbering cat owners (23%), and owners of all other pets trailing far behind, the Pew survey finds. More whites (64%) than blacks (30%) or Hispanics (39%) have a pet. There is also an income skew to pet ownership: nearly seven-in-ten (69%) adults with an annual family income of $100,000 or more has a pet, compared with fewer than half (45%) of adults with an income below $30,000. Also, rural residents (65%) are more likely than suburbanites (57%) or city folks (51%) to have a pet — though, as noted above, they’re a bit less likely to consider their dogs or cats a member of the family.
Dog Training And The Family Pets
Dog training can help the family dog and cat tolerate or ignore each other. As dog owners, we enjoy companionship from both animals. Dogs edge cats by a nose in the human intimacy sweepstakes. Dog owners are slightly more likely to think of their pet as family. They are more inclined to describe their relationship with their pet as “close” rather than “distant.” Some 94% of dog owners say this, compared with 84% of cat owners.
Needless to say, dog training won’t shut down the prey drives, but it will help owners micro-manage their dogs good and bad decisions. This finding won’t shut down the never-ending, (mostly) friendly competition between dog people and cat people. To the contrary, when paired with another set of responses from the same survey, it just might open an entirely new can of worms.
When you ask adults about their parents, 87% say they feel close to mom and 74% say they feel close to dad.
So for anyone keeping score, the family intimacy standings look like this: dog 94%; mom 87%; cat 84%; dad 74%.
About the Survey
Results for this survey are based on telephone interviews conducted nationally, having sampled adults. They ranged from ages 18 years and older, who were living in continental U.S.
- Interviews conducted October 5-November 6, 2005
- 3,014 interviews
- Margin of sampling error is plus or minus 2 percentage points for results based on the total sample at the 95% confidence level. The margin of sampling error is higher for results based on subgroups of respondents.
Survey interviews conducted under the direction of Princeton Survey Research Associates International. Interviews were conducted in English and Spanish.