Victoria’s first ever pet census reveals unique insights on ownership, attitudes and experiences

Share on

Pet owners across Victoria have shared their unique insights and opinions on pet ownership, attitudes, and experiences in the Allan Labor Government’s first-ever Victorian Pet Census.

Photo Credit: Photo by Chewy on Unsplash

It’s clear Victorians love their pets! The crucial information gathered as part of the Victorian Pet Census will allow the Labor Government to better support Victorian pets, their owners and the animal welfare sector to access the services and support they need most.

Acting Victorian Minister for Agriculture Harriet Shing recently visited Companion Animal Network Australia member Lort Smith Campbellfield Veterinary Clinic and Adoption Centre to announce the findings on pet ownership – thanks to more than 37,000 responses to the Census on Victorians’ furry, feathered and finned friends.

The survey identified an estimated 4.3 million pets across Victoria, providing a greater understanding of the unique needs of a variety of animal species to help close the current knowledge gap on pet welfare and owner priorities.

Ms Shing said, “The immense love and care Victorians have for our pets is reflected in the numerous responses to our first Pet Census, highlighting the vital role pets play in the lives of Victorians. The Census data will empower us to better cater to a diverse range of pet owners in our community, ensuring quality support and services for every pet, regardless of species.”

Victoria’s most popular pets are dogs, accounting for 41 per cent, followed by cats at 24 per cent. Among the preferred dog breeds were Cavoodle, Labrador, Greyhound, Border Collie and Golden Retriever.

In great news, the majority of cat owners adopted their cats from an animal or rescue shelter. Cat owners were more likely to get their cats from a rehoming organisation (28%) or animal shelter (22%). The main reason cat owners chose cats from a rehoming organisation or shelter was to help save the animal.

In a demonstration of commitment, pet owners have collectively spent an estimated $6.6 billion in the past year alone on pet products and services to ensure the wellbeing of their beloved companions.

The Census also highlighted the positive impact of pets on the lives of Victorians, with an overwhelming 98 per cent attesting to benefits of pet ownership. Companionship and love were ranked highest at 79 per cent, followed by improved mental health and emotional support at 57 per cent.

The data collected reflects the diversity in pets found homes in Victorians households, including 83,000 reptiles and amphibians and 43,000 insects and spiders, chosen for their unique appeal and low-maintenance care.

The Pet Census findings underscore the immense love, health benefits, and deep connection between Victorians and their animal companions, guiding tailored support and improved welfare services for pets of all shapes and sizes across the state.

To explore the results, please visit

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram