National Dog Survey

Discover the results of our second National Dog Survey

A black labrador lying down

Our 2023 National Dog Survey has shone an important light on the crucial issues facing the UK’s devoted dog owners today.

The responses have given statistics and first-hand accounts that we will use to set our policy for the future. We want to ensure we support dogs and owners in good times and in bad, and care about the nation’s dogs as much as you do.

The response

244,478 dog-lovers completed our 2023 survey, telling us about their lives with 348,533 dogs.

Our findings speak of the joy, companionship and peace of mind dogs bring us, every single day. They’re family, and they boost our mental health, get us outside and make us laugh.

But the results of the survey left us in no doubt that these are challenging times for dog ownership. We take calls every single day from distressed people who are in the unthinkable position of having to give up their beloved dog.

Dogs Trust cares, and we are committed to doing all we can to help keep dogs with their owners. 

1 in 7 owners

looking to cut costs of non-emergency vet care.

Caring for your dogs together

Devoted dog ownership shines through our survey results, and we enjoyed finding out about the UK’s favourite dog names – which mirror the names we’re giving our children! Poppy, Bella and Luna are the most popular names for girls, with Alfie, Charlie and Milo topping the list for boys.

The mixed crossbreed remains the most popular canine companion in the UK. And for the UK’s most popular specific dog breed, Labradors remain on top. There were five different spaniels and spaniel crossbreeds in our top 25. And there’s a new four-legged pup on the block – numbers of Smooth Haired Miniature Dachshunds are on the rise, particularly amongst the Millennial age group.

While the Covid pandemic saw a clear rise in the number of puppies and dogs welcomed into our homes, the survey also shows the cost-of-living crisis has now left many owners struggling to provide for their beloved pet’s needs. Nearly a fifth of owners say they’re considering changing to cheaper food, and one in seven are wondering if they could cut the cost of non-emergency veterinary care.

Dog owners also told us about the heartbreaking challenges they were experiencing trying to find rental accommodation that took dogs – a quarter said they’d been refused a private rented home in the past five years because of their canine family member.

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National Dog Survey 2023 Full Results

Favourite dog...

The UK's favourite dog is the lovely Labrador

Why we did the National Dog Survey

As the UK’s largest dog welfare charity, we wanted to understand how we can better support the nation’s dogs and their owners. 

Following our first 2021 survey, Dogs Trust created new services to help the nation’s dog owners - including cost-of-living support, reactive dog classes and a free-to-access Behavioural Support Line. The 2023 National Dog Survey will continue to help us better understand and care for the UK’s estimated 13 million-strong dog population.

Our goal is for every dog to have a loving home – and helping owners in crisis keep their dogs will continue to be a priority for us moving forward. We’ll also work to make sure training and behaviour issues don’t lead to dogs being given up to rehoming. And in a complicated world of misinformation, ensure Dogs Trust online and social media is a trusted place where people can seek advice. 

Loved in our care for as long as it takes

Our ability to be a lifeline for dogs in need, staying with them until they find their forever home, is made possible through the generous support of compassionate dog lovers like you.

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