New research from pet food company Bella & Duke exposes common misconceptions and stereotypes surrounding dog ownership in the UK. The survey of pet owners found that 72% believe a Rottweiler owner is more likely to be male, while 45% think small dog breeds like Chihuahuas are accessories for women.

These perceptions reflect outdated gender stereotypes. Mark Scott, CEO of Bella & Duke, said “Common pet misconceptions we see today like the ‘crazy old cat lady’ are often derived from the movies we consume or the books we read.”

The survey also asked about maintenance needs, with 28% incorrectly assuming larger dogs require more care than smaller ones. And 61% felt too many people get pets for the wrong reasons.

In addition to breed stereotypes, the research revealed misconceptions around proper canine nutrition. 24% of respondents did not know which food type is healthiest, and over a third were unsure of the legal minimum meat content required in commercial pet foods. Despite this lack of knowledge, 40% trust nutritional claims from brands without evidence.

Some think raw dog food is inconvenient or unsafe, but Bella & Duke’s direct delivery service aims to make raw feeding simple. As one of the first raw pet food companies to earn the RawSAFE certification for safety, they offer guidance to optimize dogs’ well-being.

Scott stressed the need to openly address myths, saying “It’s vital we educate pet owners so they can make informed choices to allow their dogs to thrive in a healthy and happy life.” He partnered with customers and their dogs, including a Rottweiler named Loki, to showcase that dogs of all types deserve proper care.

With a better understanding of canine health and nutrition, owners can look beyond stereotypes to provide the best life possible for their furry companions. Debunking misconceptions about dogs is an important step toward more responsible pet ownership.

Image: Bella & Duke subscriber Lisa Twenty and her rottweiler Loki