[UPDATED SEPTEMBER 2023]
Over time, certain Google search trends can paint a pretty hilarious, heartwarming, and insightful picture of what’s on the typical UK dog owner’s mind.
However well we think we know our canine companions, they can still confuse us with their bizarre behaviour. And when we have a really strange question on our minds, we’d often prefer to ask Google than a real person.
In fact, a 2017 study published in the journal The Veterinary Record, found that more pet owners (78.6%) used the internet to find pet health information, than went to their vets for that information (72%).
According to this study, at least, the internet really is a top source of animal welfare information – although we’d always encourage pet owners to go to their vets first and foremost with any health queries.
So, what sorts of things are pet owners searching for online? Let’s take a look.
The most searched-for questions about dog behaviour
People are incredibly close to their canine companions and spend plenty of time trying to understand them – and what a dog’s life is like.
We’ve found some extremely cute Google searches, such as ‘What do dogs dream about?’ ‘Do dogs smile?’, and ‘What colours can dogs see?’
We also uncovered some hilarious results. For example, ‘Why does my dog smell like fish?’, ‘Why do dogs wink?’, and ‘Why do dogs’ farts smell so bad?’
What health questions do owners ask?
Believe it or not, but it’s not all cute canine trivia that people are searching up. Many dog owners are also turning to Google for more important health and wellbeing questions. For example, many pet owners Google whether they can give dogs paracetamol.
Instead of being tempted to give dogs human medicine, owners should take them to the vet at the first sign of sickness. You should always verify pet health information from the internet with your vet or an appropriate animal health professional.
Other health concerns commonly searched for include: ‘Why does my dog eat grass?’, ‘Why do dogs shake?’, and ‘How much food should I feed my dog?’
Understandably, owners are endlessly curious about their dogs, whether they’re trying to look after them or understand them better, or just wondering about some of the weirder things they do.
Back in 2021, we did a little research on some of the most prevalent Google searches related to the nation’s dogs. Here’s what came up:
Data collected in November 2021. In order to collect the data, YuMOVE used SEO tool ahrefs to analyse monthly UK search volume. ahrefs gathers volume data from Google Keyword Planner and pairs it with clickstream data.
YuMOVE analysed search terms with the key terms ‘my dog’, ‘when do dogs’, ‘why do dogs’, ‘can dogs’ and ‘do dogs’ to uncover the top queries. Monthly search volume was then multiplied by 12 to find annual search volume.