Confessions of Americans Obsessed with Dogs

Dog owners with their pet dogs

Humans first started domesticating dogs over 30,000 years ago, and dogs’ unconditional love for us hasn’t stopped since. It’s no secret that dogs take up a huge place in their owners’ hearts, which is why some couples choose to go all-in by buying or adopting their first pup together! With dogs playing a front-seat role in their owners’ love stories — some even walking down the aisle at their owners’ weddings — Shane Co. wanted to deliver the inside scoop from these self-proclaimed dog-obsessed owners.

We surveyed over 1,000 dog moms and dads across the country to find out which respondents have a social media account for their dog and how many of them like to order a puppuccino in the drive-through! Whether you’re obsessed with dogs or side with #teamcat, we wanted to find out all of the behind-the-scenes madness when you let your dog live in your house rent-free! 


We analyzed dog obsession by surveying 1,414 people for two days in May 2022. We asked questions like “If you have more than one pet, do you have a favorite?” and “Have you ever thrown away one of your dog’s toys because it annoyed you?” Find out how many owners let their dogs take up the majority of space on the bed and which generation is most likely to wear matching outfits with their pet!

Life with a Furry Friend at Home

Bar graphs displaying dog owner stats

Marriage experts agree that saying, “I love you” in a relationship shows commitment and care, but it begs the question — do dogs understand our love? 98.0% of respondents said that they feel their dog(s) appreciate their love! While technically researchers can’t prove that your dog loves you back, it doesn’t stop man’s best friend from giving affection to their dog-obsessed owners. 

White lies are sometimes necessary to tell your pets, as nearly one in five dog-obsessed parents (18.0%) admitted to telling their dogs that they were going somewhere fun, only to deceive them by taking them to the vet. How else would we get those hilarious videos of German shepherds suddenly realizing they’re at the vet? Speaking of videos on social media, one in eight dog owners (12.0%) say they have made an account specifically for their dog!

While your dog may not appreciate the surprise, plan something special for your human partner instead to create more intimacy and joy-filled fun in your relationship!

More and more people are letting their dog third wheel for date night, as one in two people (53.0%) are more likely to travel to a dog-friendly location. Nowadays there are plenty of dog-friendly date ideas that let man’s best friend in on the romance! 

Spoiling Our Favorite Pups

Cluster chart displaying the different ways Americans spoil their dogs

If your dog obsession runs deep, chances are you love spoiling your pup with treats, table scraps, or even a luxury dog spa day! 10.1% of respondents admit to ordering a whipped cream-filled puppuccino for their very good boys and girls. 

As 22% of millennials and Gen Zers are choosing to expand their families with dogs instead of babies, those hard-earned dollars have to go somewhere! 6.2% of those obsessed with dogs admit to spending their money on cute clothes for their fur babies! When we took an even closer look, we found that 11.0% of Gen Zers are more likely than older generations to wear matching outfits/accessories with their dog. 

Low funds in the bank don’t stop 37.0% of respondents from spending frivolously on their pets even when they’re supposed to be saving. What’s a little bit of debt compared to putting a smile on your pup’s face?

If you’ve ever wondered, “Am I obsessed with my dog?” after opening dog gifts from a treat and toy subscription service, chances are you don’t even have to ask! Dogs are like family, which gives 4.0% of respondents a good reason to purchase monthly gifts for their pets. 
Four in 10 people (40.0%) say they are more likely to do something special for their dog than their partner. Even if your dog’s love language is receiving gifts, just be sure to check how your partner feels most loved too.

That’s Classified Information

Donut charts, illustrations, and bar charts displaying dog owner’s secrets

We may not find it acceptable to pick a favorite child, but 40.0% of dog owners with more than one dog have no shame in choosing which one they prefer! Have trouble bonding with one of your dogs over the other? Play games and take naps together to make your bond stronger — which may apply to your human relationships too! 

There are some aspects of owning a dog that you just want to keep close to the chest. 21.0% of women who are dog lovers experience jealousy when their dogs show someone else more attention, compared to only 12.0% of men. 

One study found that humans and dogs bond the same way moms and their babies do — by releasing a feedback loop of oxytocin, which may be one reason why women happen to be more overprotective over their fur babies than their male counterparts.

Even if you are obsessed with dogs, they can still be a lot of work. From bathing, brushing, and picking up poop to daily walks, dogs require tons of time and attention. It’s no surprise that one in six people (16.0%) wish their partner would help them out with their pet(s) more. 

Whether you have a high-energy dog like a border collie or a lazy bulldog that doesn’t require as much work, relationship experts reveal that expressing your needs to your partner can either make or break your relationship

One benefit of having a dog obsession is that your pet becomes the perfect escape plan when you want to avoid social functions. Nearly one in two people (45.0%) agree, as they have used their dog as an excuse to not go to an event a couple of times. Ditching friends and family for some alone time isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as time apart from them helps you to connect with yourself and become more empowered to do things on your own. 

Closing Thoughts

And there you have it! Doggie data straight from the mouth of dog-obsessed owners. 

Buying or adopting a dog is a major milestone in anyone’s relationship. Ready for the next step? Pick out the perfect engagement ring and prepare to pop the question with our helpful proposal tips!

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