How many pets are there in the UK?

We’re a nation of animal lovers – but have you ever wondered how many pets there actually are in the UK? Well, we have the answer!

Every year we work with YouGov to survey the UK’s pet owners into the wellbeing of our pets. This allows us to have a sample that is representative of the UK by pet species (cat, dog or rabbit owners) and the owner’s gender, age and region, which means we can accurately estimate the number of pet dogs, cats, and rabbits in the UK. You can read all our findings in the 2021 PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report, as well as further details of our methodology.

Our 2021 findings showed that:

  • 51% of UK adults own a pet
  • 26% of UK adults have a dog with an estimated population of 9.6 million pet dogs
  • 24% of the UK adult population have a cat with an estimated population of 10.7 million pet cats
  • 2% of the UK adult population have a rabbit with an estimated population of 900 thousand pet rabbits

You can read the latest version of the PAW Report here and you can download previous versions here.

An infographic showing the UK's pet population statistics.

Data from our 11 years of PAW Reports

Cat population (millions)

Dog population (millions)

Rabbit population (millions)

Paw Report 2021




Paw Report 2020




Paw Report 2019 10.9 9.9 0.9
PAW Report 2018 11.1 8.9 1
PAW Report 2017 10.3 9.3 1.1
PAW Report 2016 11 9.4 1.5
PAW Report 2015 11.1 9.3 1.2
PAW Report 2014 10.5 8.1 1.3
PAW Report 2013 9.5 7.8 1
PAW Report 2012 11.9 8.3 1.7
PAW Report 2011 11.9 8.3 1.7