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Dog owners ‘set to spend 10% more on their pets this Christmas than last year’

Dog owners expect to spend around £100 on average on gifts for their pets this Christmas, despite more than half (54%) being worried about the cost of presents this year, according to a charity.

More than a third (36%) of dog owners said they will cut back on the number of people on their Christmas shopping list.

A further quarter (26%) of dog owners said they would ditch “secret santas” with friends and decline Christmas party invitations to prioritise their pets.

Some also said they would use vouchers and discount codes to cut costs.

On average, people were expecting to spend £101 on gifts for their dog this Christmas, the survey of 2,000 dog owners in November for charity Guide Dogs found.

People estimated they spent about £92 last year on average on their dogs – meaning they typically expect to spend around 10% more this year.

Helen Whiteside, chief scientific officer for Guide Dogs, said: “We want to reassure dog owners that you don’t need to break the bank to give your dogs a fun festive season.”

She said DIY ideas for puzzles and games using items many people already have at home can help to engage dogs, adding: “For food-based games, make sure treats come out of your dog’s daily meal allowance, and to be sure to supervise your dog at all times with any of these activities.”

The findings were released as Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures showed inflation jumped to 11.1% in October – the highest rate in 41 years.

Here are the average amounts dog owners are expecting to spend on their pets this Christmas, according to Guide Dogs:

– East Midlands, £78

– East of England, £95

– London, £120

– North East, £87

– North West, £84

– Northern Ireland, £75

– Scotland, £125

– South East, £95

– South West, £115

– Wales, £105

– West Midlands, £96

Yorkshire and the Humber, £98