The dog is in the detail. This is what Melbourne, Australia-based dog food maker Scratch has discovered after conducting its own “The Great Australian Dog Survey” in May 2020.
A total of 20,664 Australians from age 18 to over 55 took part to share fun and enlightening details about their relationships with their dogs, such as sleeping arrangements, travel plans and their distrust of big dog food companies.
Love me, love my dog
The survey seems to support the notion that our dogs are an extension of ourselves as three in four people said they choose breeds that reflect their personality. Hopefully this is true, because the survey identified the friendly, good-natured and intelligent Labrador Retriever as Australians' favorite breed.
Australians really love their dogs: two out of three said they spend more than six hours a day with their dogs, with half of the surveyed dog owners even willing to take a pay cut to spend more time with them.
As is to be expected, dog lovers (which is 40% of Australians, according to Scratch) are not crazy about places that don't welcome dogs and their wish is to take them anywhere they go, like a restaurant or public transport. For this to happen, they (81%) want their government to know that it's time to view dogs not as mere objects or property. The majority (95%) of respondents said they would also bring their dogs with them if they have to move abroad.
Fake news in pet food?
If the results of The Great Australian Dog Survey are to be believed, fewer than one in three Australians believe the claims of big pet food companies regarding their products. To make an informed decision, Australians turn to the nutritional information printed on the dog food packaging, with 43% saying they are neutral about what they read, 30% trusting it and 27% saying they don’t trust what’s on the label.
If the fine print on the pet food labels isn't enough, then Australians ask for a veterinarian's recommendation to help them choose what dog food to buy. Their choice could also be influenced by a brand's reputation, price and what friends and family say.
Pet stores (33%) and online shops (27%) are where they would likely buy dog food, the survey showed.
When it comes to feeding dogs bones, many (61%) have no quarrel about it. An overweight pet dog also doesn't seem to be a cause of worry as very few (8%) would acknowledge it.
Some Australians calling for more regulation
Scratch, like many in the Australia pet food industry, is calling on their government to create proper pet food regulation that will cover pet food labeling along with the claims being made. At present, pet food companies must comply with Australian consumer law and the Australian Standard for manufacturing and marketing of pet food.
Scratch offers on subscription its premium grain-free kibble recipes with 28%+ sustainably sourced protein, rich in fiber and with four healthy oils to improve chronic skin conditions. The owners tout that they have “the most honest nutritional labeling in the industry.”