The majority (63%) of Brits would grieve the loss of a pet as deeply as that of a family member.
This is according to a new YouGov survey carried out by global pet insurance technology integrator, Aquarium.
The survey illustrates the strength of the bond between pets and their owners, according to Mark Colonnese, Aquarium’s Sales and Marketing Director.
He said: “Us Brits have always been famous as a nation of dog lovers, but it seems the stereotype is incorrect – we love animals full stop.
“As someone who owns two dogs, the results of the survey have not come as too much of a surprise to me, but I know that some of my colleagues were pretty surprised just how important we think our pets are.”
The survey showed that the feelings were even stronger among women, 71 per cent of whom would regard a pet death as equally upsetting to that of a family member’s, compared to 55 per cent of men. The bond between pets and owners was recently highlighted by the case of Monty the Goldfish, whose owners’ decision to pay £200 for an operation drew national press attention. This commitment to our pets points to lessons to be learnt for both consumers and insurers, according to Mark.
“From a consumer perspective, the message has to be to insure our pets! Animal operations can prove extremely costly, and given our attachment to our pets, we’re probably going to end up shelling out regardless,” Mark continued. “Despite this, our survey also showed that 57 per cent of pet owners do not have their pets insured. To avoid having to make a very difficult – and costly – decision in future, pet owners really ought to invest in pet insurance.
“There are also valuable lessons for insurers. In their case, our results really highlight the sensitivity of issues surrounding a pet’s death. While this would be obvious to, for instance, a life insurance company, our survey reinforces the need for an empathetic customer journey among pet insurers. The first step of this process is ensuring a smooth, seamless process to minimise stress for newly bereaved pet parents. An intuitive, omnichannel technology solution is a central part of that and should be a priority for all pet insurers.”