Data collection
The State of Pet Homelessness Project reviewed 930 sources to select 180+ data points, conducted nearly 30,000 surveys with pet owners and non-pet owners, and interviewed over 200 pet professionals working in the field of pet homelessness.

The Project reflects the state of pet homelessness at a specific moment in time when the research was conducted. 

Human petting a dog from an animal shelter
Our data sources
Country
Category
Subcategory
Source
Country
Category
Subcategory
Source
Country
Category
Subcategory
Source
Methodology
  • Pet Homelessness estimates based on primary and secondary research conducted by Euromonitor International in 2022-2023, and owned pet estimates collected by Mars Consumer Marketing Insights team
  • Public sample surveys (online and in the field) of pet owners and non-pet owners conducted by Kantar in 2022
  • Pet professionals, such as shelters and non-profit organizations (NGOs) working in the pet homelessness space
Methodology
  • Pet Homelessness estimates based on primary and secondary research conducted by Euromonitor International in 2022-2023, and owned pet estimates collected by Mars Consumer Marketing Insights team
  • Public sample surveys (online and in the field) of pet owners and non-pet owners conducted by Kantar in 2022
  • Pet professionals, such as shelters and non-profit organizations (NGOs) working in the pet homelessness space
Methodology
  • Pet Homelessness estimates based on primary and secondary research conducted by Euromonitor International in 2022-2023, and owned pet estimates collected by Mars Consumer Marketing Insights team
  • Public sample surveys (online and in the field) of pet owners and non-pet owners conducted by Kantar in 2022
  • Pet professionals, such as shelters and non-profit organizations (NGOs) working in the pet homelessness space
How we did it
Estimating pet homelessness
1

Country data collection

1

Country data collection

2
Data validation
2
Data validation
3
Data standardization
3
Data standardization
4
Homelessness pet calculation
4
Homelessness pet calculation
Understanding the factors impacting pet homelessness
5
Behavioral data collection
5
Behavioral data collection
6
Data validation and standardization
6
Data validation and standardization
7
Clustering algorithms
7
Clustering algorithms
8
Interpretation and visualization
8
Interpretation and visualization
The three themes emerging from the data
Prevent unwanted pets

Large populations of stray pets which can breed at a rapid rate are a huge part of the problem. This, coupled with irresponsible breeding practices, e.g. those that do not pay enough attention to health, temperament, positive early socialization, or to ensuring a good fit with the pet owner, can result in increasing numbers of homeless pets and groups of pets that are difficult to provide sustained care to or match with a home. Our data looks at this significant and critical piece of the challenge.

Reproduction control: spaying and neutering
Reproduction control: spaying and neutering
Routes to pet ownership
Routes to pet ownership
Attitude towards street & stray pets
Attitude towards street & stray pets
Ensure sustained care

Helping to provide more homeless pets with responsible loving homes, or the sustained human care they need in the community, is a foundational step in tackling pet homelessness. Achieving it requires an understanding of the key barriers to acquiring or adopting a pet, or accessing veterinary care, as well as facilitating pathways to ownership, and provision of care for community animals, whose home may not be a conventional house but still need access to sustained care. Shelters may provide care for cats and dogs but resources are often strained and, if pets are not adopted to new homes, demand may exceed capacity.

Pet acquisition
Pet acquisition
Barriers to pet ownership
Barriers to pet ownership

Perception of shelter pets

Perception of shelter pets

Keeping pets in homes

Keeping pets in homes is vital for both pet and owner to benefit from a longstanding bond. Pets are at risk of becoming homeless through being relinquished or abandoned if the pet ownership experience is difficult, or a pet owner can’t access the advice and support they need. Pet owning practices which easily allow pets to stray or become lost can also result in owned pets becoming homeless. Our data looks at issues such as the cost of caring for a pet, common pet care practices and the incidence of lost pets.

Lost pets
Lost pets
Rehoming pets
Rehoming pets
woman feeding stray cats
How can you help?
Donate to our programs or partners
Discover a range of programs working to address pet homelessness and learn how you can make a difference.
Be a responsible pet owner
Understand how to prepare for and care for a pet. Find out how you can help stray pets.
woman feeding stray cats
How can you help?
Donate to our programs or partners
Discover a range of programs working to address pet homelessness and learn how you can make a difference.
Be a responsible pet owner
Understand how to prepare for and care for a pet. Find out how you can help stray pets.
How can you help?
Donate to our programs or partners
Discover a range of programs working to address pet homelessness and learn how you can make a difference.
Be a responsible pet owner
Understand how to prepare for and care for a pet.