UK Domestic Cat Population Statistics

How many cats are there in the UK?

Every year the PFMA commissions the well respected Pet Population report, which looks in detail at pet ownership trends.  The pet population estimates were made over two years, with face to face interviews conducted by TNS using a total sample of over 8,000 (more detail on survey mechanics below). In 2020 it is estimated that 12m (41%) of UK households have pets.  The all pets population stands at around 54 million. There are around 60 breeds of cats recognised by the International Cat Care (formally Feline Advisory Bureau). For the top 5 cat breeds in the UK see below.
Russian Blue Cat Green Eyes laying down
Generally the following are the main reasons people keep cats as pets:

  • Companionship: 27%
  • Love: 31%
  • Easy maintenance: 7%
  • Gets on with other species: 3%

Top 5 Cat Breeds in the UK in 2020

  1. Bengal
  2. British Short Hair
  3. Burmese
  4. Siamese
  5. Ragdoll

Pet Owning Households 2020

In the UK, almost 1 in 2 households own a pet with around a total 21 million pets owned (excluding indoor and outdoor fish).

“With the demands of modern life and the pull of digital companions, we are pleased more children will benefit from the social, emotional and physical benefits of pet interaction.”

The percentage of households owning a cat or dog as a pet in the UK were broken down as follows:
2010/11 2011/12 2012/13 2013/14 2014/15 2015/16 2016/17 2017/18 2018/19
Dogs 22% 22% 24% 25% 24% 24% 24% 26% 25%
Cats 18% 18% 19% 18% 17% 17% 17% 18% 17%

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*The above statistical information was provided by kind
permission of PFMA/TNS – Pet Population Report

PFMA position on possible cases of COVID-19 in animals

Recent news reports may have left owners feeling concerned about the impact of Covid-19 on their pets. PFMA throws light on the latest science to reassure pet owners.