Santa Paws is kind to dogs



  • Dog owners spend more money on their pet's Christmas presents than their friends, parents, siblings and grandparents
  • 94 per cent of dog owners find it easier to buy gifts for their dog than their family
  • Half of men spend more money on their dog‘s coat than their own hair

New research1 from Direct Line Pet Insurance has revealed that 94 per cent of dog owners find it easier to buy gifts for their dog than their family. Dog owners also admitted to spending more money on their pet's presents than friends’, grandparents’, siblings’ and even their parents’ presents.

Almost a third (29 per cent) of dog owners choose to give their dog their Christmas presents before their partner because they’re more excited to give it to their pup.

Perhaps dogs truly are man‘s best friend, as one in ten men (10 per cent) feel their dog is more deserving of presents than their partner.

Dog owners will go to great lengths to ensure pups aren’t left out of Christmas festivities, as recent research2 has revealed that 640,000 individual cat and dog Christmas dinners were bought across the festive period last year, compared to only 638,000 turkeys.

Dogs in London, the East of England and Scotland are owned by the biggest spenders, as a generous 18 per cent of Londoners spend over £100 on their dog at Christmas.

The majority of dog owners (41 per cent) spend between £10-20 on their pup at Christmas.  More than a quarter (27 per cent) of owners spends between £21 and £40, while a generous four per cent spend between £81 and £100.

However, Christmas isn’t the only time that owners pamper their pups, as 68 per cent of pet owners buy their dogs presents whenever they see something they'd like.

Comparing owners grooming habits to their dogs, 20 per cent of owners take their dog to the groomers every couple of months whereas 22 per cent of owners only visit the hairdresser once a year.

In the age of the well-groomed modern man, it may come as a surprise that half of men (50 per cent) spend more money on their dog's coat than their own hair.

It seems the extent of pampering is endless, as the research showed the majority of dogs in the East Midlands, North West and South East have their own rooms, but overall dogs across the country sleep where they want.

Prit Powar, Head of Pet Insurance at Direct Line, said “Naturally dog owners treat their four legged companions as part of the family and these results aren't surprising coming from a dog loving nation.

Christmas is a great time for owners to be with their dogs but it’s impossible to keep an eye on your pet all the time. With all of the extra food around at Christmas, it’s crucial to be aware of what pets are eating as some human food can be poisonous to dogs.

If you feel your dog has eaten something they shouldn’t have, all Direct Line Pet customers will be able to connect with a vet 24/7 through Pawsquad which is provided for free with their pet policy.  If in doubt, customers should get their pet to the vet immediately just to be on the safe side.”

Prit Continued, “Direct Line urges responsible dog ownership all year round and Christmas is no different. Direct Line Pet Insurance customers concerned about their pet’s health can take advantage of free access to the PawSquad app, which allows users to video call or text a vet in any situation including emergencies.”


For further details, please contact:


Olivia Thwaites

[email protected]

01651 832145


Kim O’Meara

[email protected]

07903 410421


Notes to Editors


1 Research conducted by K9 Media in November 2018

2 Research conducted by Tesco, released November 2018


About Direct Line:


Started in 1985, Direct Line became the first UK insurance company to use the telephone as its main channel of communication. It provides motor, home, travel and pet insurance cover direct to customers by phone or on-line.


Direct Line general insurance policies are underwritten by U K Insurance Limited, Registered office: The Wharf, Neville Street, Leeds LS1 4AZ. Registered in England and Wales No 1179980. UK Insurance Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.


Direct Line and UK Insurance limited are both part of Direct Line Insurance Group plc.


Customers can find out more about Direct Line products or get a quote by calling 0345 246 3761 or visiting


About is the UK’s leading dog adoption site. Launched in 2007, the site was set up to help publicise the concept of dog adoption, support animal rescues and help more dogs to find loving new homes.


Working alongside over 600 animal rescues across the UK, the site has helped more than 50,000 dogs to find new homes.