The Surprising Statistics of Pet Travel

Who knew that so many pets were travelling round the world right now?Here at PBS Pet Travel we’ve never been busier, which set us thinking; what are the worldwide statistics regarding pet travel? For example, how many pets travel regularly, what modes of transport are used, and where do they go?

Drawing from a range of surveys and official statistics we believe we now have enough information to finally discuss the statistics surrounding pet travel – whether that is domestic or international.

Firstly, it should be said that keeping pets is more popular now than ever before; possibly because the economic recovery of the last few years has made pet care an ever more reasonable expense. In contrast to the dark days of the economic meltdown, most people have some

In the US alone, for example, 40% of households now have at least one dog while 34% of households have at least one cat. While these aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive, the long and short of it is that this is a lot of pets. Unsurprisingly, with today’s busy lifestyles, at least a proportion of those pets are expected to travel in some way each year.

The latest statistics suggest that 56% of dog owners transport their pet by car at least once a month. Generally, this is likely to be for reasons such exercising away from home or for maintenance chores such as vet visits or claw clipping.

Long distance travel (classed as journeys over 50 miles) are far less frequent. Only around 14% of pet owners report transporting their pets longer distances, with only 6% of pets being taken on a plane each year. The reason for such a small number of pets travelling by plane seems to be a result of frustration over the poor selection of pet-friendly airlines.

In terms of practicality, it seems a lot of pet keepers are attempting to transport their pets overseas themselves and this is leading to frustrations. This is no surprise really. Here at PBS Pet Travel we deal with pet shipping every day of the year and know only too well that a little “insider knowledge” is often necessary in order to safely and successfully transport a pet, and get it to it’s final destination on the right day and in perfect health.

So what sort of pets actually get transported? Unsurprisingly, the all-out winners are dogs, making up 58% of the pets travelling around the world. Cats come in an unsurprising second, making up 22% of all the pet journeys each year.

What might surprise you a little more is the type of pet that comes in third. Ranked by the number of journeys each year, it’s actually pet birds who come in third, far ahead of horses, small mammals or any of the other options you might have considered.

So what about the pets that don’t travel but instead get left at home? Well here the news isn’t all bad either. Firstly, research suggests that pets left at home while their owners travel are most likely to board with a friend or relative rather than ending up in a boarding kennel or cattery. In this way, their owners can be sure that all their pet’s will receive all the specialist care necessary.

And don’t think that owners forget all about their pets while they are away. Almost a quarter of pet owners carry around a picture of their cat or dog and almost as many will buy their pet a souvenir while away.

Twenty percent of pet owners admit to ringing home to “speak” to their pet while they’re away  and four percent of pet owners have even sent their dog or cat a postcard while away.

Whatever the case may be, it seems abundantly clear just how much pet owners think of their furry – or feathered – friends. In many ways they’re a central part of the family and are treated as such. All we can say is “well done”; you’re making us feel very proud indeed!

Who knew that so many pets were travelling round the world right now?