In a groundbreaking international study, a coalition of animal welfare experts partnered with Mars to shed light on the global issue of pet homelessness.

The ‘State of Pet Homelessness Project’ unveils concerning statistics, estimating that nearly 35% of cats and dogs across 20 countries are either living on the streets or awaiting adoption in shelters. The ambitious project aims to inform targeted actions to address and alleviate pet homelessness on a global scale.

The study, encompassing Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Japan, Lithuania, Mexico, New Zealand, The Philippines, Poland, South Africa, Turkey, Thailand, the USA, and the UK, compiled data from over 900 global and local sources, 30,000 public surveys, and 200 expert interviews. The findings indicate a staggering 362 million homeless cats and dogs worldwide.

Common Themes Across Countries

While each country faces unique challenges, common themes emerged from the data:

1. Pet-Friendly Housing Limitations

  • Nearly 1 in 5 individuals considering giving up their pets cite housing-related challenges.
  • Almost half of those who have rehomed a pet in the past did so due to housing issues.

2. Pet Ownership Challenges

  • Globally, around 15% of pet owners contemplate giving up their pets in the next 12 months.
  • Primary reasons include personal health challenges, housing constraints, and time pressures.

3. Stemming Homeless Population Increase

  • Approximately 50% of owned dogs and 60% of cats globally are reported as not sterilized.
  • Unplanned litters contribute to the homeless pet population.

Ending Pet Homelessness: Industry Response and Action

Loïc Moutault, Global President of Mars Petcare, emphasised the significance of the data in shaping interventions. Mars aims to support 30 million vulnerable pets over the next five years. A $500,000 donation to Humane Society International will fund projects in India, South Africa, and Mexico, focusing on reproduction control, training, and care for animals.

Mars collaborated with an advisory panel comprising leading animal welfare experts from organizations such as Humane Society International, Alliance for Contraception in Cats & Dogs, International Partnership for Dogs, and the International Companion Animal Management Coalition.

To delve deeper into the comprehensive data and learn more about the ‘State of Pet Homelessness Project,’ visit