The economy’s affect on dog ownership

After recently listening to a podcast about dog shows, I wondered if dog show outcomes have any influence over dog ownership. Now keep in mind, I don’t like dogs. They’re loud, messy, and dependent. But I do like data. Good data is quiet, clean, and and can stand on its own. In summary: dogs bad, data good. I can do dog-data.

I started by grabbing the dog registration counts from the Kennel Club. (It took some fairly obnoxious cleaning up, so I have a clean set of the data available here.) I then compared that to the list of Crufts winners and found…no correlation. Some of the less well-known breeds got a boost, but nothing overall.

So what does influence dog ownership? Probably many factors, but the state of the economy seems to be a good indicator.

Since all this data is from the U.K., I next found the % change in the London FTSE for each year. As it turns out, the percent change each year is a pretty strong indicator of how much dog registrations will change the next year, as this graph shows.

Economy's influence on dog registrations

Economy’s influence on dog registrations

There may be some other neat data in here, breaking it down further by class of dog or breed. If you find something, share it in the comments.

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