Pets in modern Australia

Australians have traditionally enjoyed a close affinity with companion animals but demographic and lifestyle changes, as well as increased regulation, are creating challenges for pet owners and the pet industry alike.

In an environment where dogs are restricted on beaches (in Greater Sydney they are not allowed on any beaches), where the majority of strata-title buildings and rental accommodation have a no-pets policy and where pet populations have been in steady decline for 10 years, the Australian Companion Animal Council asks: What could socially responsible pet ownership look like in contemporary Australia?

The Australian Companion Animal Council has brought together leading international and Australian researchers, public health experts and veterinarians for a one-day conference to examine the choices and challenges facing pet owners and Australia’s $6.02 billion p.a. pet care industry.

Speakers include:

  • Craig James, Chief Equities Economist, Commonwealth Securities – The economic ramifications of a declining market
  • Mark McCrindle, Director, McCrindle Research – Australia’s shifting demography and the impact on animal ownership
  • Dr Lisa Wood, Associate Professor, University of Western Australia – Public health challenges in an urban environment – where do pets fit in?
  • Stephen Jenkinson, UK-based expert on dog behaviour and management – Socially responsible pet utopia: What would the ideal situation be?

Other speakers will cover the role of pets in aged care facilities, mental health and pets, how the industry is adapting to the changing environment, why people are choosing not to own a pet, and the role of government in socially responsible pet ownership.

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