Follow for more talkers

4 in 10 people set New Year resolutions for their pets

Improving their furry friends' physical health is the main goal for 56 percent of pet owners.

Avatar photo


A close up shot a dog walked by its owner on a beach near ocean.
(Juice Verve via SWNS)

By Lucy Brimble, 72Point via SWNS

Nearly four in 10 pet owners have set a New Year's resolution for their animal companion - if only to help them achieve their own goals.

A poll of 2,000 UK adults, who have a pet, revealed their top goals for their furry friend for the year - including getting more exercise and losing weight.


Others want them to learn a new trick and bark less, while 18 percent are adamant about their pooch improving when walking off the leash.

It also emerged a third of owners are more likely to complete their own resolutions if they do them alongside their pets.

Bella Von Mesterhazy, at Petplan, which commissioned the research, said: "After the over-indulgence of the Christmas and New Year period, we know the new year is a great time to reset and focus on some resolutions for the year ahead.

“Making resolutions for your pet, to make sure they are happy and healthy is equally as important."


The study also found 85 percent of those, who have set their furry friend a goal, think it’s likely they will stick to their resolution, with 28 percent setting targets for their pet in previous years.

Improving physical health is the main objective for 56 percent, while half are keen to improve their relationship with their four-legged friend.

When it comes to their pet’s behavior, 34 percent feel there are areas they would like to improve this year - including pulling on the lead, nervousness and excessive barking.


Nearly a fifth (18 percent) put these bad habits down to needing more time to learn and 17 percent said it is a behavior common with their breed.

Despite wanting to work on these things, 82 percent said their pet is typically well-behaved.

Touching on their own resolutions, 42 percent of owners have set themselves one, with 69 percent claiming they will stick to it - less than when asked the same question about their pet.

For 40 percent of those polled, via OnePoll, there is a similarity between their own goal and that of their furry companion - such as more exercise and a healthier diet.


And when thinking about the year ahead, 51 percent said their pet will help them become a better person.

Bella Von Mesterhazy, at Petplan, added: “We have lots of useful advice, guidance and training tips that can help with any resolutions you decide to set them.

“The health of the nation’s animals is at the heart of everything we do, so we’re delighted to see that this is reflected by owners too.”


  1. Get more exercise
  2. Lose weight
  3. Keep on top of grooming
  4. Learn a new command
  5. Eat a healthier diet
  6. Walk better off the lead
  7. Bark less
  8. Make new pet friends in the neighborhood
  9. Reduce separation anxiety
  10. Travel more
  11. To be fully house-trained
  12. Get on better with other pets
  13. Tackle a fear of loud noises
  14. Be less nervous
  15. Be more independent/ less needy
  16. Be more sustainable (when it comes to toys, accessories, bedding, etc.)
  17. Stop scratching the furniture
  18. Get on better with humans
  19. Snore less
  20. Sleep in their own bed

Stories and infographics by ‘Talker Research’ are available to download & ready to use. Stories and videos by ‘Talker News’ are managed by SWNS. To license content for editorial or commercial use and to see the full scope of SWNS content, please email [email protected] or submit an inquiry via our contact form.

Top Talkers