Pet owners say their pups have gotten them through breakups, job changes, big moves and now COVID-19

New research conducted by OnePoll on behalf of DOGTV reveals (Photo by Sergey Komarets on Unsplash).

The first year of dog ownership will see six pairs of chewed shoes, five emergency visits to the vet and six bolts to freedom out of the front door — according to new research.

The survey asked 2,000 American dog owners about the impact their dog has had on their lives, despite the growing pains.

Respondents spent an average of $122.32 preparing their homes for the arrival of their furry friend and 11 hours a week devoted to training them.

Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of DOGTV, the survey found that within their first year at home, respondents’ dogs went through 27 toys, destroyed four pieces of furniture and slipped out of their leash six times.

From helping their owners through three new jobs and three new homes, 64% of respondents said they don’t know where they’d be without their dog’s love and support.

In fact, nearly seven in 10 respondents said their dog knows them better than they know themselves.

Respondents also shared their dog has also helped them heal three broken hearts, so it’s no surprise 61% said their dog is a better judge of character than they are.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, 68% of respondents said their dog is the only reason they’ve kept their sanity during lockdown.

Sixty-four percent of those polled also shared they’re worried about returning to their normal schedules (whenever that may be) and are worried their dog will develop separation anxiety.

Six in 10 of employed respondents (about 1,800) even said they wish their workplace was dog-friendly so they wouldn’t have to part ways once things return to normal.

This desire to keep Fido by their side isn’t just out of unconditional love, however, as 52% of those working from home have struggled to keep their dog occupied during work hours.

Respondents shared their furry friend makes an appearance in four video calls a week with their office and they’ll vocally share their own ideas during another four conference calls.

Sixty-seven percent of those polled working remotely said they want to provide more enrichment for their dog as the pandemic keeps them away from the office, but they just don’t know what else to do.

“Finding a source of home enrichment for dogs left home alone or those that need to be distracted during the day while their pet parents are on a video conference may sometimes seem like a daunting task. Utilizing live stream content, like DOGTV, have been developed through years of research by some of the world’s top pet experts, has proved to help your dog become happier and more confident and less likely to develop stress, separation anxiety or other related problems.”

Forty-six percent of respondents shared they turn on a dog enrichment program on the TV for their pup to keep them occupied and another 32% let them watch a random channel.

This seems to work out for most respondents too, as 50% said their dog interacts and reacts to things on TV — and 58% even think their dog is more invested in their TV shows than they are.

“Finding specific programming that has been designed specifically for your dog’s needs, sense and the way they see and hear the world. As everyone continues to stay at home, dogs need as much calming as humans do — whether it’s to keep them stimulated and occupied while working from home or to keep them calm and out of trouble when home alone.”

A dog’s first year at home will see…

  • 5 accidents in the house
  • 5 pieces of chewed furniture
  • 4 pieces of furniture ruined
  • 6 chewed shoes
  • 6 times they slipped off-leash
  • 5 emergency vet visits
  • 7 destroyed chew toys
  • 6 times they swallowed something they shouldn’t have
  • 6 times they ran out of the house
  • 27 toys


  1. Turn on the TV to a dog enrichment program — 46%
  2. Lay out toys for them to play with — 45%
  3. Turn on the TV to a random channel — 32%
  4. Turn on the radio — 31%
  5. Utilize enrichment-specific toys — 27%

>> Download the video and infographic for this research story <<
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