(Family Features) Over the last year and a half, people have spent more time with their furry friends while working remotely, postponing travel plans and trading nights out for nights in.
The bond between people and their pets has never been stronger with 90 percent of pet parents wanting to sustain the increased time together even as they do more outside the home, according to Mars Petcare’s “Keeping People and Pets Together” Report. Whether living, working, playing or traveling, pet parents want to keep their cats and dogs close. In fact, 81 percent agree the increased time spent together during the pandemic has made their four-legged friends feel even more like family.
Consider these ways pet parents can stay close to their pets and learn more at Better Cities for Pets.
Pet parents generally prefer to bring a plus-one: 63 percent said they would feel more comfortable at a social gathering with friends or family if they were able to bring their pets and 42 percent said doing so would make their pets feel less lonely or anxious. Visiting a local park together, checking out a pet-friendly patio or setting up a play date with another furry friend can keep pets active within busy social calendars.
Eighty-nine percent of pet parents said it’s important they can continue to spend time with their pets during the workday. From mid-day walks to having a companion join a team video call, pet parents have developed special routines with their pets. Maintaining this time is such a priority that 64 percent of Gen Z and 56 percent of Millennial pet parents would consider changing jobs or reducing hours to do so. The BETTER CITIES FOR PETS™ program developed a Pets Work at Work toolkit that shares ideas and best practices to make your workplace pet-friendly.
More people are prioritizing their pets when it comes to their housing choices. In fact, younger pet parents have moved or plan to move to a home or community that’s more pet-friendly, with research showing 72 percent of Gen Z and 61 percent of Millennial pet parents are likely to make this decision.
Nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of pet parents intend to bring their four-legged family members with them when they travel next year. That number includes 84 percent of Millennial and 77 percent of Gen Z pet parents. Be sure to research accommodations for you and your pet to make sure they offer pet-friendly amenities, like those at Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites by Hilton.