Americans Spending and Doing More for Their Pets
More and more American families own pets.
A recent study says that 85 million families in the United States own a pet.
The American Pet Products Association's study for the years 2017-2018 says that represents 68 percent of all families in the U.S.
Thirty years ago, when the study was first done, 56 percent of families owned a pet.
The survey found dogs are the most popular pets. Sixty-point-two percent of homes own one. Cats are the second most popular with 47.1 percent of families reporting they had a cat. Freshwater fish came in third with 12.5 percent.
Nicki Dobson is head of marketing and communication for Three Dog Bakery. The business calls itself the "original bakery for dogs." She said pets have become especially popular among Americans in the past 10 years.
She said, "People are having more pets and less children. People are concerned about what they eat. Our whole premise was trying to make things with human-grade ingredients and a focus on nutrition. They look like human food, but they're meant for pets."
Another company, Posh Puppy Boutique, sells clothes, jewelry and other items for dogs.
There are also pet hotels and pet health centers. One study found that Americans spend about $126 each month on their pets.
Three Dog Bakery opened in 1989. Dobson says there are now 45 bakeries around the world, including in Canada and China. She said cakes are the most popular item. She added that some people pay $50-75 on baked goods each week for their pets.
Pets rather than children?
Some younger Americans seem to be choosing pets over having children. Some are making big life decisions, such as buying a home, around the lives of their pets.
The SunTrust banking company did a study in 2017 of people under the age of 40 buying their first home. The study found that 33 percent said a good yard or good space for their pets influenced them to buy a new home. Only 25 percent said marriage was a reason, and 19 percent said the birth of a child.
Some companies now offer pet benefits such as pet insurance. They are also offering "pawternity" leave, which gives workers free time to spend with their new pets.
Dobson noted that taking dogs to work is now popular in places that permit it.
Americans' love for their pets is even influencing their travel plans. A recent survey found that 49 percent of pet owners have not left the country since owning their pet. Sixty-eight percent of those said it was because they feel guilty leaving their pets alone.
Health experts say pets can improve the health of their owners. The American-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says pets can reduce blood pressure, cholesterol levels and feelings of loneliness.
The CDC adds that pets also offer chances for outdoor exercise and socialization with other people.
I'm Jonathan Evans.
1.Freshwater fish 淡水鱼
Mosquitofish, freshwater fish with a taste for mosquito larvae, are highly social.
2.outdoor exercise 户外运动
The doctor suggested I should have more outdoor exercise.
3.blood pressure 血压
The patient's blood pressure is stable.
4.focus on 专注于
The talks will focus on economic development of the region.
5.The CDC adds that pets also offer chances for outdoor exercise and socialization with other people.
offer chances for 提供...的机会
Multiple-planet systems may offer a chance for confirming the densities of small, rocky worlds.
Only rapid decision could offer more chances for sightseeing and reduce possible regret.
6.Some are making big life decisions, such as buying a home, around the lives of their pets.
making big decisions 做重大选择
Whatever you end up doing, this is not the right time to be making big decisions.
She's at her best when she's making big decisions.
调查发现，狗是最受欢迎的宠物。有62%的家庭养狗 。猫排在第二位，有47.1%的家庭表示他们养猫 。淡水鱼类排在第三位，占比为12.5% 。
尼基·多布森（Nicki Dobson）是三狗面包店（Three Dog Bakery）的营销传播负责人。该公司自称为“最早的犬类面包店” 。她说，在过去10年里，宠物在美国人中特别受欢迎 。
她说：“养宠物的人越来越多，生孩子的越来越少。人们只关心宠物吃什么 。我们整个前提是尝试人类可食用的成分制作食物、注重营养 。它们看上去与人类食物无异，只不过是供宠物食用的 。”
Posh Puppy Boutique公司出售狗的服装、珠宝及其它商品。
三狗面包店于1989年开业。多布森表示，他们在全球拥有45家店，包括加拿大和中国 。她说，蛋糕是最受欢迎的品类 。她还说，有些人每周为宠物购买烘培食品会花费50到70美元 。
2017年，美国太阳信托银行对40岁以下的人购置首套房屋做过一项调查。该调查发现，33%的受访者认为，适合宠物的院子或优良的空间会影响他们购买新房 。只有25%的受访者提到婚姻是购房因素，19%的受访者提到购房是因为生孩子 。
美国人对宠物的喜爱甚至影响到了旅行计划。最近一项调查发现，49%的宠物主人从养宠物后再没出过国 。68%的人表示，这是因为他们会因为把宠物单独留下感到内疚 。