The Pet Revolution

Corgi dog

The Pet Revolution

We really live for our furry friends these days, but we’re all better off for it

Dogs have come a long way since the days when they were put to work on farms and fed scraps, writes Greg Rosalsky in the Planet Money newsletter. “They’ve even come a long way since just a few decades ago when they spent their nights in the doghouse.”

If you don't think so, just ask my dog. She sleeps on a memory foam bed—when she's not happily snoozing on my feet while I work. Or snacking on gourmet dog treats, drinking water with an herbal additive or being whisked off to a playdate at doggy daycare.

But that’s not to say this is a purely one-sided friendship. Researchers have found that pet owners have a lower risk of heart disease and that simply having a dog reduces a person’s risk of premature death by up to a third. They're certainly good stress relievers.

Which could explain why as companies look to reopen their offices post-pandemic, many remote workers—some of whom adopted a new pet during the pandemic—are choosing their pets over jobs, reports TIME.

Since 1998, the pet population in America has almost doubled—about two-thirds of the country now owns a pet, writes Mark Cushing in his new book, Pet Nation.

Cushing traces the revolution back to 1998. The the annual amount that Americans spent on their pets ballooned from $23 billion to $90.5 billion (in inflation-adjusted terms). That's a staggering 293% increase. And then the pandemic hit, causing spending to soar even higher. Last year, Americans spent a record $103.6 billion on their furry friends (as well as non-furry reptiles, birds and fish).

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What We Swear By

Best pet products and accessories
Best pet products and accessories

After a lot of trial and error, here are the tried and true products and accessories that our team uses on the regular to keep our dogs and cats happy, healthy and smelling fresh.