UK pet owners indulge their hot-dogs and thermo-cats

  • Over half of pet owners turn up the heating for their cat or dog when they go out
  • Men more likely than women to leave the heating on for pets
  • BBC Radio 1 station of choice for cats and dogs

Pampered cats and dogs enjoy the heating on high and the radio blaring - even when their owner is not at home, according to research from energy company E.ON1.

Dog owners are most likely to bow-wow to their pets' love of the warm, with almost half (47%) leaving the thermostat turned up whenever they're out. Mollycoddled moggies also enjoy toasty temperatures as more than one in three cat owners (38%) adopt the same approach.  

Taking it one step further, over half (52%) of cat and dog owners actually increase the temperature when they leave the home to ensure that their four-legged friend stays warm and fuzzy, with men being 20% more likely to reach for the thermostat than women2.

Making sure their pets are kept entertained, owners leave the radio on so their pet can enjoy listening to ‘meeeowsic' - with BBC Radio 1 being the station of choice for both cat and dog owners3.

Cementing their reputation as the more independent of the two animals, just one in four cat owners (26%) feel they need to leave the radio playing for their pet, compared to almost half (47%) of those who have a dog. A quarter of those who keep the radio on do so to ensure their pet doesn't get lonely.

Other insights from the research show:

  • The master and his owner - men who have a dog are most likely to leave the heating on for their pet (53%);
  • It's reigning cats and dogs - one in 10 owners who leave the radio on do so just because their pet likes music;
  • Turn up the heat - those aged 18-24 are most likely to keep the heating on for their pet4;
  • Cat that got the cream - over two thirds of cat owners (68%) in the East Midlands increase the heating when their owner goes out;
  • Spoiler alert - East Midlands pooches are most likely to have the luxury of the radio or TV on when their owner leaves the house (62%).

To help owners balance the happiness of their pets and their energy bills, E.ON has teamed up with respected vet, author and TV personality, Dr Scott Miller to provide some simple tips.

Fiona Stark, Director of Corporate Affairs at E.ON and dog owner, said: "Our research shows that owners are thinking carefully about their pet's comfort when they leave the house, but it's important to remember that leaving the heating and radio on for long periods may also increase your energy bills.

"We'd advise pet owners to consider other ways they can keep their pet happy and warm while they wait for them to come home. As Dr. Scott's tips show it's often the simple things that will ensure your pets - and your energy bills - stay as healthy as possible."

Dr. Scott Miller's top tips when leaving your pet at home:

  • Exercise your pet well before leaving them. This should help them to be much happier to curl up in bed while you head out.
  • If your pet likes having the radio or TV on, try leaving it on a timer to reduce your energy consumption.
  • Leave chews or rubber toys stuffed with their normal food to give your pets some mental stimulation when you are out.
  • If you're worried about your pet getting cold, try leaving warm blankets in their basket rather than increasing the heating temperature.
  • Don't make a big fuss when you leave; if you keep calm your pet is likely to keep calm too.
  • When you get home, ignore your dog for the first ten minutes or so, then when they are calm give them attention and affection. Giving them attention immediately can encourage our canines to become over-excited whenever the front door opens.
  • Provide lots of fresh water for your pets during the winter months when leaving them indoors, as heating our homes can lead to a very dry and dehydrating indoor environment.

E.ON offers a range of tips and products to help people save energy. Please visit eonenergy.com to find out more.


Notes to editors:

1            All stats based on research carried out amongst 4,797 UK adults by OnePoll in March 2012;

2            45% of women and 53% of men keep the heating on for their dog. 34% of women and 45% of men keep the heating on for their cat (OnePoll, March 2012);

2        64% of men who have a dog turn the heating up for their pet when they leave the house compared to 44% of women who have a dog (OnePoll, March 2012);

3        45% of cat owners who leave the radio on for their pet tune into BBC Radio 1 and 34% of dog owners who leave the radio on for their pet tune into BBC Radio 1 (OnePoll, March 2012);








Percentage of people who keep the heating on for their dog






Percentage of people who keep the heating on for their cat







  • E.ON is one of the UK's leading power and gas companies - generating electricity, retailing power and gas, developing gas storage and undertaking gas and oil exploration and production. It is part of the E.ON group, one of the world's largest investor-owned power and gas companies. E.ON employs around 12,000 people in the UK and more than 79,000 worldwide;
  • In the UK, E.ON supplies power and gas to around five million domestic, small and medium-sized enterprise and industrial customers - meaning the company has to buy approximately 122.7 billion kWh of power and gas each year to meet their needs. E.ON also offers innovative energy services and technologies tailored to meet its customers' needs, and is helping customers become energy efficient by encouraging them to insulate their homes, moderate their energy usage and even generate their own power;
  • E.ON's Reset Review continues to identify and discuss changes with customers through its 28,000-strong YourSay panel, its independent Customer Council comprising business leader Allan Leighton, ex-MP and Select Committee chair Paddy Tipping and E.ON Customer Service Advisor Joanne Sheridan, its 1,000-strong MySay employee panel and through discussions with consumer advocacy groups such as Which? and Consumer Focus. Changes made to date include: Helping customers control their bills: Fair prices, simple products, transparent profits, A fairer way of paying: Providing stability to help households budget, Improving customer service: Consistency, easier contact, the confidence to complain;
  • E.ON's generation portfolio includes world-class gas-, coal- and oil-fired power stations. E.ON is a market leader in combined heat and power (CHP), and is one of the UK's leading green generators with 20 wind farms and the UK's first wave power generator, with another 1,500MW of renewable capacity under development;
  • One of the many ways E.ON leads the energy industry is through its commitment to market liquidity and transparency as evidenced by its actions on the day-ahead UK power markets including the N2EX auction. E.ON was the first company to sign a gross-bidding agreement with N2EX and leads the market with a volume equivalent to some 60% of E.ON UK's generation activity being traded so far this year.

For more information contact:

Jag Kahlon on 02476 181 308 or Jag.Kahlon@eonenergy.com