During COVID, pet-related searches are higher than ever

woman scratching chin of happy cat

Since quarantine began, people have been forced to stay in and learn new ways to maintain their mental and physical health. Research has shown* that pets can help people feel better, so it should come as no surprise that animal shelters around the country (world?) are emptying out. "Dogs or cats make the perfect companions during COVID-19,” says Prairie Conlon, LMHP & Clinical Director of CertaPet. “With many people across the country still isolating from friends and family, having a furry friend can alleviate loneliness. It's important to remember that adopting an animal is a lifetime commitment take the extra time now to train them for the future.”

From February to April, we saw an increase in searches related to pets (+41%)**, dogs (+56%), and cats (+48%) as people began adopting furry friends and learning about how to care for and train them. Several millions of Pinners have been searching for pets since February—with monthly searches reaching the highest they have ever been in April.

Since more people are adopting and fostering pets, they are also turning to Pinterest to take their pet parenting commitment to the next level. I had a lot of random things in my pantry and used Pinterest to look up how I can make dog treats with people food,” says Kelsey H. of Seattle, WA. “I used what I had and made some treats that my Great Dane absolutely loves.“

line graph showing sharp increase in Pinterest searches related to "pet"

Download the high resolution line graph here

After adopting pets, thousands of Pinners then begin searching for ways to care for them. Just as Pinterest 100 predicted, pampering pets has become a major trend, with ideas like ‘Pet fashion,’ ‘Cat bday party ideas,’ and ‘Dog patio ideas apartment’ on the rise.

Pinners are also using Pinterest to choose breeds to adopt, with searches for “types of dog breeds” up 84%. Finding the right name is always a challenge, evidenced by increases in searches for “cute kitten names” (4x greater) and the search for “unique puppy names” doubling. 

As Pinners prepare to bring their fur babies home (“puppy checklist” is 2x greater, they also find creative ways to share the exciting news with the world. Searches for “puppy announcement ideas” are up 2x and—over just the last few weeks—searches for “puppy shower”*** (adopt a puppy party) are up 47%. Take a look at some other top trending pet related searches, and be sure to check out our Pin Picks board below!

Homemade food 

  • Help your pup with the hot weather: “dog popsicles” 5x and “dog ice cream” 2x
  • Give them a treat: “homemade dog treats” +87% and “puppy treats homemade” 2x
  • Give them some fruit: searches for “apple dog treats”, “carrot dog treats”, and “banana dog treats” have all doubled

DIY pet accessories

  • Keeping them housed: “Diy cat house” +82% and “pallet dog house” +70%
  • Let the cats play: “indoor cat garden” (to lounge on or eat) +65%  and “outdoor cat tree” 2.4x 
  • Keep the puppy comfy: “DIY puppy toys” and “DIY puppy bed” have both doubled

Grooming and training

  • Grooming by yourself: “how to groom a dog at home” 4.5x and “dog shampoo homemade” 2x
  • Training babies: “puppy schedule” 2x and “leash training dogs” +62%
  • Keeping them entertained: “games for dogs” +62% 

Notes:

*Source: Winston, Ellen (2017, January 23). Animal-Assisted Psychotherapy. The National Psychologist https://nationalpsychologist.com/2017/01/animal-assisted-psychotherapy/103593.html

** Unless otherwise denoted, all increases are calculated from February ‘20 to April ‘20

*** Increase is calculated using normalized searches from 4/20/20-5/03/20 compared to the two weeks prior (4/6/20-4/19/20)