New study reveals common pet parenting personas

A new study from reveals pet parenting personas are as common for cats an canines as they are for kids.

The study of over 1,800 pet parents revealed the way the country’s pet owners interact with their furry friends with 66% admitting they would fit into a particular parenting style when it comes to their beloved family pet.

But while the nation’s kids are brought up by ‘Helicopter’ parents ad ‘Tiger’ mums, the study found our nation’s pets are more likely to experience pet paw’renting alternatives such as the ‘Traffic Light’, the ‘Entranced’, the ‘Sloth’ and the ‘Constable’.

Other popular methods have been identified as the ‘Hy-Paw-Chondriac’, the ‘Goose’, the ‘Pinot Noir’ and the ‘Sergeant Major’, with the ‘Paws-Off-Parent’, and the ‘Baggage Handler’ completing the top ten of most typical pet parenting styles.

Interesting stats to emerge from the study of dog and cat owners were that almost one in three (29%) adopt similar styles of parenting to their children and pets.

In fact, only 16% said they used a completely different style of parenting with their children compared to the one they use with their dog or cat.

Top pet behavioural expert Professor Peter Neville, who worked with said “pet parent personas” have become more common in line with our growing desire to humanise pets to ensure they feel like one of the family”.

Prof. Neville added: “It’s fascinating to discover that there are clearly different categories or “personas” when it comes to pet paw’renting. The ‘Traffic Light’ is the clear winner from the data we’ve analysed, with 28% of pet parents adopting this style, which is good. It shows most pet parents are sensitive, caring owners.

“Traffic Light’ pet owners have a healthy balance of rules and freedom. Pets might be given the red light when it comes to surfaces or the bed, but these owners enjoy nothing better than giving them the go-ahead to roam freely in the park. They have also mastered training essentials like sit, stay and recall, which gives them a trust in each other and builds confidence in offering a patient response to your amber light signal ‘wait for it…’, ‘watch me’.

“They also guide their pets away from danger, but love giving them the green light to enjoy themselves. The ‘Entranced’ was the second most common type, voted for by 15% of pet owners. These people have the best intentions, but as soon as their pet locks eyes with them and gives their command, they’re toast …. as they turn to putty in their paws.

“Entranced’ owners are at their pet’s beck and call, even if it’s 4am and their furry friend is sat on their chest glaring intently wanting breakfast. The most laid back of the types is the ‘Sloth’ (14%). Dogs and cats who are lucky enough to have a sloth for a paw-rent are the envy of the street’s pet-life – as they are spoiled rotten. These guys are the champion of chill, anything goes.  There’s a peacefulness in being gentle and easy-going. Rather than strict training, they encourage their pet to work things out for themselves.

“Sloths are happy turning a blind eye to the odd indoor accident, their furry friend wandering on a kitchen surface, or completely ignoring an abrupt recall, because rules are meant to be broken, right? And how can you resist those eyes….?.”

A spokesperson for said: “We have a dedicated community of over 70,000 pet parents who are not only keen to ensure their pets get the best flea and worming subscription on the market, but also often tell our team tales about the trials and tribulations of raising their four-legged friends.

“It’s been well documented that 2020 has seen a surge in people taking the plunge and adopting a dog or cat, so our team – many of them pet parents themselves – have spent the past few months talking to those customers who have had to adapt and learn about how to raise their new family member and be the best pet parent possible”.

“What we’ve heard from our customers is, just like raising a child, certain decisions have to be made early on when it comes to acceptable behaviour in the home and how that is taught. But it’s not one size fits all; everyone has their own pet “paw-renting style”.

Overall top ten ‘Paw-Renting’ types

  1. Traffic Light                        28%
  2. Entranced                          15%
  3. Sloth                                   14%
  4. Constable                           13%
  5. Hy-Paw-Chondriac           9%
  6. Goose                                 7%
  7. Pinot Noir                          7%
  8. Paws off Parent                 3%
  9. Sergeant Major                 2%
  10. Baggage Handler              1%


Top 10 dog ‘Paw-Renting’ types

  1. Traffic Light                       36%
  2. Constable                          16%
  3. Entranced                          12%
  4. Goose                                 8%
  5. Hy-Paw-Chondriac           8%
  6. Sloth                                   7%
  7. Pinot Noir                          7%
  8. Paws off parent                3%
  9. Sergeant Major                2%
  10. Baggage Handler              1%


Top 10 cat ‘Paw-Renting’ types

  1. Sloth                                   22%
  2. Traffic Light                       19%
  3. Entranced                          18%
  4. Constable                           12%
  5. Hy-Paw-Chondriac           10%
  6. Pinot noir                           8%
  7. Goose                                 7%
  8. Paws off parent                3%
  9. Sergeant Major                 1%
  10. Baggage Handler              1%