It is a known fact that pets play an increasingly significant role in German society. This is partly due to ongoing growth in the number of single-person or small households. In 2014, the number of single-person and 2-person households grew by 2% and 1% respectively over the previous year. In addition to ongoing growth in internet usage and digitalisation, this is an indicator of the increasingly isolated lifestyles led by many Germans.
Pets are often welcomed as providing balance to these consumers’ hectic and career-focused lives and sometimes even viewed as taking the place of a partner or child. They are considered beloved companions that enhance their owners’ wellbeing and quality of living. Dogs are also viewed as supporting their owners’ fitness and health and as helping them to reconnect with nature on their daily walks. As a result, the German pet population is growing at rates almost parallel to the number of small households.