Pets Are to Blame for Guests “Ghosting” on Holiday Gatherings

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Petplan survey reveals nearly 85% of pet parents admit to skipping out on seasonal soirées.

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It’s happened to every holiday host: one minute the place is packed with guests, and the next they’re gone without so much as a goodbye. Petplan pet insurance says there may be a good reason for all the “ghosting” – according to the results of their holiday survey, people are prone to ducking out if they have a dog or cat at home.

“We knew that ‘I have to feed the cat’ or ‘I’ve got to walk the dog’ are lines people use to leave a party, but we had to laugh when nearly every pet parent in our survey admitted to doing so,” says Natasha Ashton, co-founder and co-CEO of Petplan. “What’s worse, some pet parents forego the festivities altogether to stay home with their furry friends!”

Pet parents prone to exodus aren’t the only findings in Petplan’s seasonal survey of more than 7,000 North American pet parents; the pet insurance provider also unwrapped these trends in holiday spending:

  • Nearly 96% of pet parents purchase holiday presents for their four-legged loves.
  • Favorite toys (75%) and top-shelf treats (62%) will stuff most stockings this year.
  • More than a third (38%) of pet parents spend $25 to $50 on pet gifts for the holidays.
  • 32% report spending more than $50!

Another interesting statistic? Almost 42% of the people polled plan to receive gifts from their pet for the holidays (no word on how pets get their paws on the Amex card), and because no family photo is complete without a wet nose and four feet, 73% of kitties and mutts mug for the camera on holiday cards.

“These numbers prove what we’ve been saying for years – that today’s pet parents truly consider their furry friend a member of the family,” says Chris Ashton, co-founder and co-CEO of Petplan. “Spending trends for pet products remain strong year after year, so it’s no surprise that the holidays see a surge in present purchases. Our survey may be all in good fun, but the results do reflect consumer habits across the industry.”

For more seasonal scoop, fun facts and scintillating stats about pets, point your paws to

Petplan is more than a pet insurance provider. We’re dedicated to providing pet parents with the support, resources and tools they need to keep their pets not just surviving—but thriving—into their old age. Simply put, we aim to be the kind of company that will make our pets proud. For the second consecutive year, Petplan was listed among the top 50 companies on Forbes' annual ranking of America’s Most Promising Companies – a list of 100 privately held, high-growth companies with bright futures. Petplan is the only pet insurance provider to have been included on Inc. Magazine’s list of 500 fastest-growing, privately held companies in America.

Petplan’s fully customizable cat and dog insurance policies provide comprehensive coverage for all hereditary and chronic conditions for the life of the pet as standard. Petplan policies are underwritten by AGCS Marine Insurance Company in the U.S. and by Allianz Global Risks US Insurance Company in Canada. The Allianz Group was rated A+ by A.M. Best in 2015. For more information about Petplan pet insurance, visit or call 1-866-467-3875.

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Jessica Kinney
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