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Living in the Animal Kingdom


Sebastien Houdusse, global chief strategy officer of BETC Fullsix, investigates how our pets are helping us get through the many pains

Living in the Animal Kingdom

In our latest Prosumer Report, we explored the relationship that people all over the world have with their pets and animals in general. Havas Group surveyed nearly 14,600 women and men aged 18 and older in 30 markets to better understand the evolving role of animals in modern life and how this will influence consumer and brand behaviours.

What we discovered is that the animals with which we choose to share our lives—not just dogs and cats, but also birds, reptiles, and more— have taken a central place. In our eyes, they’ve become humans, almost too human, and they are increasingly counterbalancing the deficits and pain points of 21st-century life.

Here are six findings from the report about our little fur babies:

1. Pets are a source of comfort in chaotic, conflict-filled times

We’re living in a world that seems more and more violent, where people are having a hard time trusting their peers.  In the face of uncertainty and discord, people are gravitating toward the less complicated and adversarial relationships most pets provide. For 72% of Prosumers (versus 58% of mainstream consumers), “the more I witness the violence of humans, the more I love animals”. 

2. Today, pets are active members of the family

We see more and more people calling themselves pet parents or referring to cats and dogs as their brothers and sisters. Pets have moved from having a function within the house (protection, workforce) to being real members of the family. For 81% of Prosumers, their pet is as much a member of their family as their child, partner or other relatives. 

3. Pets can be a cure to our growing loneliness

For people living alone or those suffering from depression, pets can be a lifeline, offering a reason to get out of bed in the morning and to leave the house to go on walks. 63% of Prosumers worldwide (versus 52% of mainstream) say they could easily picture themselves living alone as long as they had a pet 

4. Pets are the new Tinder

67% of Prosumers (versus 42% of mainstream) say their pets have helped them make friends and expand their social circles. That’s not surprising when 30% of gen z-ers declare they don’t know how to make friends anymore (source: WGSN Anti-wellness study, 2022)

5. Having pets is our new proof of value

The decision to own a pet is widely viewed as a mark of character and trustworthiness. 44% of Prosumers (versus 37% of mainstream) admit that they are less likely to trust a person who doesn’t like pets. In 2022, when Queen Elisabeth passed away, we witnessed a lot of talks about her corgis and their fate after the death of their owner. 

6. Violence against animals has become intolerable 

We love our pets so much that we see them as superheroes: capable of bringing our families together, curing our anxiety and loneliness, and helping us make new friends. Any form of violence against them has become intolerable to the point that 85% of Prosumers worldwide say that violence against animals should be punished the same way as violence against human beings. 

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BETC Paris, Thu, 26 Jan 2023 09:58:13 GMT