Extensive research conducted by Prins Petfoods into the needs and experiences of cat owners has produced new insights into cat ownership in the Netherlands. Based on a representative sample of 3,114 Dutch cat owners, the research report offers valuable information to professionals in the pet industry.
The aim of this research was to gain deeper understanding of the various aspects of cat ownership, such as how they choose and buy cat food, the information sources they use to learn more about their cat, the educational needs and the challenges facing cat owners.
Demography and cat ownership
The demographic information shows that most of the respondents are women (92%) aged between 25 and 75, most being in the 41-55 age group. With respect to education level, nearly half the respondents have a secondary vocational education (MBO) diploma, 22% have a higher professional education diploma, and nearly 13% have completed pre-vocational secondary education (VMBO).
Around 60% of the respondents have two or more cats, whereby 80% of the cats are in the adult and senior life phase. Most cats come from private homes producing occasional litters, followed by rescue or rehoming centres. This emphasises the crucial role of adoption in finding a home for cats. Most cats live indoors, some with access to an enclosed area of the garden.
Choosing cat food
The research shows that most cat owners prefer dry and wet food for their cats, with nearly 45% choosing dry cat food. Important factors when choosing cat food are acceptance (taste), composition, price and functional characteristics. Around half of the participants do not vary the type or brand of food, often due to concerns regarding the health and acceptance of their cat. Fortunately, 62.5% of the respondents say that their cat does not have health problems.
When choosing cat food, owners also consider the characteristics of the packaging in their purchasing decision. It is important that the packaging is easy to open and close. Owners also appreciate having all the relevant information about the food provided on the packaging. Furthermore, a considerable number of cat owners prefer packaging made from recyclable material, for environmental reasons.
Buying behaviour cat food
Most cat food is bought from pet shops, followed by online shops and supermarkets. The choice of a specific location is influenced by factors like expert advice, service, assortment and convenience. Nearly 70% of the respondents can afford to spend money on looking after their cat, while others look for affordable options without compromising on quality.
Educational needs cat owners
Many cat owners are interested in increasing their knowledge and learning more about cats, particularly with respect to behaviour, health, training, food and care. Online video channels, online lectures or courses, in-person courses and podcasts are popular learning resources.
This report not only contains all the research results, but also gives recommendations for the industry. Based on the findings, the research gives suggestions to ensure that the needs of cat owners are better met. The full research report is available, click on the button below to download it.