1,200 responses later, we have some fantastic data to share with our members. Thank you to all of those who were able to spare some time and participate - we really appreciate it!
- Of those surveyed, two thirds were primarily dog owners, with almost 25% feeling more feline-inclined.
- Over 80% of the respondents confessed to celebrating special occasions like Christmas and birthdays (or ‘adoption days’) with their pets. Gifts ranged from new collars or toys, to homemade treats or a juicy bone.
- Our favourite piece of data was that when it comes to the holidays, Aussie pet owners aren’t ones to leave their loved ones behind. The majority of respondents always try to bring their pets with them on holidays. But when that isn't possible, family members or friends are the preferred carers to call on, followed by pet-sitters, kennels and catteries.
TO GIFT OR NOT TO GIFT?
We asked our members if they make presents for their pets and the responses were varied but clearly showed how much we all love them.
Some of us turn into amateur pet chefs with a variety of cooked, frozen and baked treats created. One member lovingly provides crickets and mealworms for their pet.
One member explains, "We will grill some chicken or fish for them which is a special treat but also keeps them away from the lunch table," while another said, "We make meat and veggie pies for them which they love."
Cooking isn't the only way we show our pets we care - we also create presents that are fun but also get them some much. A number of pets love their presents so much they tend to run around the house tipping chairs, cat houses and Christmas trees over, much to everyone's amusement - and frustration in regards to the tree!
We're not all creative though, and sometimes rely on material goods to express our affection. "We don't create, but we do buy them training equipment and spend a few pennies on their food. We have a dog and 2 cats and they have a pretty cushy lifestyle."
"Our cats love toys made from pipe cleaners and this year we created a special cubby house for them from boxes which they love. They have an amazing run with a tunnel that goes to and from the cubby house."
The gourmet side of many of our owners came out as well with a variety of well thought products purchased with love, although we did learn a few of the more interesting products out in the marketplace.
Some pets have less sophisitcated tastes, however, such as Sox, who gets Chicken Nuggets from Maccas.
Finally, clothing options is definitely a main driver of fun, especially at Christmas although it has become increasing clear to us that dress up occasions are not limited to Christmas.
"Dexter has numerous Christmas outfits for the festive season and will have a few presents sitting under the tree. Maybe a tasty bone or a new chew toy!"
"Christmas Cat in the Hats. A way to realise my frustrated millinery skills".
THE GIVING SEASON
We also had an overwhelming amount of members telling us about their favourite animal charities.
“I think the work done by the RSPCA is wonderful,” one member said, while another confided that she had been helped several times by the charity. Especially after Christmas time, when so many people dump their ‘gifts’.
"I think it’s appalling – when you get an animal, you have them for life."
The RSPCA wasn’t just Nabo members’ favourite charity for animals, but it was also a popular choice for finding their new best friends.
It was also wonderful to hear about POOPs – Pets Of Older Persons. The group is run by volunteers who will help with the day to day care of pets of the elderly – even fostering them if their owner has taken ill.
Given that the summer holidays are the most popular time of year to jet off, it's always a good idea ot have a contingency plan in place. Here are our best tips for keeping your pets happy and safe these holidays.