Kiwi Cat Owners Among World's Most Generous - Research
15 November 2017, 5:37PM
Kiwi cats are some of the world’s most spoilt according to new research, which shows two thirds (66%) of NZ cat owners buy their feline friends, weekly treats, birthday, Christmas and even Easter gifts.
The Temptations study investigated the habits of Kiwi cat owners and their attitude towards gifting presents to their pets. It found that half (55%) of cat owners give their moggys treats at least once a week, with the most common reason that they simply wanted to make their cat happy (54%).
The study also showed that four in ten (40%) of cat owners gave their cats treats in order to give them variety or reward good behaviour. A quarter of owners said gifting presents made them feel closer to their cat.
When it comes to special occasions the survey showed owners did not want their furry friends to miss out either, with more than a fifth (21%) of owners saying they bought their cats birthday and Easter gifts.
Along with the ‘feel good’ benefits for both cats and their owners, some said the cat treats also served a practical purpose, with 36% saying they gifted treats which had health benefits for their cat’s teeth, or coat.
Animal behaviourist and vet Dr Jess Beer says when owners present their cats with treats, it increase the neurochemicals associated with happiness, which gives the cats a feeling of pleasure.
“Cats are very clever and they will also associate the enjoyment of a treat with the person providing it, so it can also help to enhance the relationship cats have with their owners,” she says.
The research was released in conjunction with Temptations launch of a new Snacky Mouse cat toy to meet consumer demand for feline gifts.
Temptations marketing manager Cormac Van Den Hoofdakker says Kiwis are buying increasing numbers of cat treats with the category experiencing a 300% increase over the past six years.
“While we are seeing a fast growing trend among owners expressing their feelings for their cat through treat purchases, and we think the new toy is an interactive way for cats to be treated,” he says.
“As the statistics show, Kiwis love to treat their cats, so we have designed an enjoyable way to make them earn their treats,” he says.