New Mexico's Pet ResourceSPRING 2008

The 2007 National Pet Owners Survey from the American Pet Products Manufacturer’s Association (APPMA) shows pet ownership at an all-time high. 71.1 million households own at least one pet. This represents 63% of U. S. households.

If freshwater fish are your passion, the total number swimming around in people’s fish tanks outnumber any other animal because people usually don’t have just one fish. Next come cats and then dogs. The 2007 survey shows the breakdown of number of pets owned as follows:

142 million freshwater fish
88.3 million cats
74.8 million dogs
16 million birds
24.3 million small animals
13.8 million horses
13.4 million reptiles
9.5 million saltwater fish


Where are people getting these millions of pets? Looking only at cats and dogs, it breaks down this way.

Friend/relative 43%
Stray 33%
Animal shelter/humane society 16%
Kitten of owned cat 14%
Adopted through pet superstore 5%
Gift 4%
Newspaper/Private Party 7%
Purchased at pet store 3%
Rescue Group 4%
Veterinarian 1%
Other 5%
Breeder 3%

Friend/relative 32%
Breeders 31%
Animal shelters/humane societies 16%
Newspaper/Private Party 13%
Strays 9%
Gifts 6%
Pet store 5%
Rescue Group 5%
Puppy of own dog 5%

(Multiple response questions so the total may exceed 100%. These figures come from APPMA.)

The City of Albuquerque included a section on Pet Ownership in its Citizens’ Perceptions of Community Conditions survey. The breakdown was similar to the national results. In Albuquerque people who owned at least one dog or cat obtained their pets as follows:

Family/friends 41%
Private sale/classified ad 19%
City Animal Services 17%
Humane Society 14%
Pet store 6%
Rescue agency 5%
Stray/abandoned 4%
Adoption agency 4%
Found on property 1%


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