How has 2020 impacted pets and owners?

How has 2020 impacted pets and owners?


The events of 2020 have impacted many Australians and had a noticeable knock-on effect on their pets. This might be more noticeable in some states compared to others, but one thing is for sure, most of us are even more grateful for our furry friends than ever before!

Pets are good for your mental health

Pawshake conducted a survey recently amongst 1500 pet owners, and it turns out that our pets are really helpful at getting us through life challenges.

For further statistics and quotes, please visit our public press release

Pets help us maintain our mental and physical health in very specific ways, too:

Our relationship with our pets has changed

With coronavirus turning life upside down overnight, Aussie pets have had to see a lot more of their owners around the house than ever before.

This is especially the case with many people working from home: in fact, 68% of survey participants confirmed that they had spent more time with their pet in 2020 than in previous years. 

Being in lockdown for weeks (even months) has altered how many pet owners feel about their fur kid. In fact, 37% confirming that events of 2020 have changed their relationship with their pet.

Pets notice changes in their owners

Have you noticed your pet’s behaviour change this year, too? You wouldn’t be alone! 43% of pet owners confirmed that they had spotted differences in how their pet was acting. 

Some of these changes are for the better. For example, 44% of pets appear to be happier and 24% of pets have settled easily into a new routine. 

  • 46% of pet owners admit their pet is more attached to them and frets when they’re home alone. 
  • 18% admitting their pet had gained weight. 
  • 9% of pet owners notice destructive behaviours such as digging and chewing furniture.

So how can pet owners help their pet adapt to life’s ups and downs with minimal stress? 

We spoke with Australian dog behaviourist, trainer and published author, Lara Shannon. Lara says ‘It’s important to be attuned to changes in your pet’s behaviour - they are more sensitive than we give them credit for to events in the human world. 

‘You can help ease your pet into a new routine with time, patience and planning. Hiring a dog walking or pet sitter is a great way to make sure they have company and exercise during the day and ease them back into normal life.