Man's Best Friend in the Digital World - 96five Family Radio

Man’s Best Friend in the Digital World

New research reveals dogs are treated more like family members than pets with an increase in social media accounts and "pet perks".

By Steff WillisThursday 13 Oct 2022TrendingReading Time: 2 minutes

It seems dogs are fully embracing the digital age.

A national study has found that almost 70% of dog owners (representing some 5 million Aussies) have already uploaded images of their dog to social media. 1 in 4 dog owners, or about 2 million people, have set up social media accounts specifically for their pets.

The research, undertaken by YouGov on behalf of Orivet, a Melbourne based pet health biotechnology company, highlights the evolving lifestyles of man’s best friend.

The research also reveals that owners are spoiling their pooches and letting them get away with a lot.

Some variations in ‘pet perks’ were identified amongst different pet breeds with owners of poodle -mixed breed dogs (‘oodles’) more likely to spoil their canine than other breed owners with a third stating they cook for their dog all the time and almost a quarter of these privileged dogs eating at the dining table.

Benefits also extend to when travelling in the family car as many owners (26%) report their dogs have ridden ‘shotgun’ in the front seat of the car while other family members sat in the back.

Man's best friend

Mr George Sofronidis, CEO of Orivet was surprised by some of the findings.

“Perhaps what struck me most was how forgiving we are of our canine companions. Almost half of the owners surveyed admit their dogs have caused some havoc around the house coming inside wet or muddy and shaking dry (49%), eating socks, underwear, or other clothing (30%), destroying furniture (23%) and hiding a bone/food in furniture/around the house and letting it slowly go rotten (22%).”

“Yet still we love them, as despite these transgressions, many dogs are treated like treasured family members and more than four in ten (42%) pet owners said they allowed their dog to sleep under the covers in their bed.”

As far as entertainment for dogs goes, while the ball remains the firm favourite toy for dogs, some 6% of respondents, the equivalent of 460,000 dog owners, stated that the family cat was the dog’s favourite toy