Cat Owners Favor Adoption, Survey Says

Poll on dog and cat owners comes out in time for National Pet Week May 1-7.

A person looking for his or her next cat or dog is more likely to go to a dog or cat shelter or rescue than a pet store, according to a survey released yesterday by Hartz Mountain Corp. of Secaucus, N.J.

The Hartz Pet Trend Report, conducted by Richard Day Research, polled 1,028 U.S. cat and dog owners about their cat or dog and pet-related topics. It found that 60 percent of the respondents would prefer to adopt their next cat or dog from a rescue society, while 10 percent said they’d go to a registered breeder, 4 percent said they’d go to a pet store and another 4 percent said it wouldn’t matter.

Hartz said it commissioned the survey to better understand what dog and cat owners think about pet issues and to gain insight into dog and cat owners’ relationships with their four-legged companions.

When considering what makes a good pet, the majority of pet owners polled (65 percent) said personality is the most important characteristic, followed by loyalty (20 percent), obedience (11 percent), “something else” (2 percent) and purity of breed (1 percent).

The report also revealed that nearly half (47 percent) of the respondents said their dog or cat is like a child to them. Forty-two percent said they would compare their dog or cat to a good friend.

The release of the Hartz Pet Trend Report coincides with National Pet Week, scheduled for May 1 to 7, 2011. To celebrate the observance, which recognizes the bond between humans and their pets, Hartz plans to encourage prospective pet owners to adopt a shelter animal. The company also has pledged to donate product to 10 U.S. shelters as part of an online contest. Details of the contest were not immediately available.

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