Lack of pet research fuels cruelty


The PDSA has said that potential animal owners need to do more to ensure they can properly care for a pet

26th September 2018 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

Pet owners are fuelling needless suffering to millions of animals by failing to carry out research before taking on a new pet.

A report from the PDSA has revealed that over a quarter (26%) of Scottish pet owners undertook no research at all before purchasing their pet.

The charity has said without proper research, potential pet owners may rely on an unrealistic portrayal of pets in films and across social media. This can result in impulse-buying of pets without understanding how to look after them, leading to needless suffering to millions of animals.

Findings from the 2018 PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report have revealed that this lack of research and preparation can leave well-intentioned owners ill-equipped to meet their pets’ welfare needs.

In response, PDSA has launched an easy online tool ( which helps measure the health and happiness of the nation’s pets based around the five basic welfare needs. It offers personalised advice to owners about how they can make simple adjustments to benefit their pet’s wellbeing.

PDSA vet Olivia Anderson-Nathan said: “Owners undoubtedly love their pets and want to do the best by them. However, failure to do the right research beforehand means that owners aren’t fully equipped to do that.

“The results of our PAW Report reveal problems with lonely, overweight and stressed pets across the UK. Unfortunately, it seems that some owners are also taking on pets off the back of trends; maybe they’ve seen a certain type of pet in a film or on social media, and whilst this is done with all good intentions, it’s worrying if it’s done without any research or consideration of an animal’s health and happiness.

“A prime example of this is the trend for flat-faced dogs such as Pugs or French Bulldogs – tragically many take them on not realising the serious health conditions that they can suffer from due to the shape of their faces.”