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The love people have for their pets is undeniable. But is that love for animals greater than the feelings people have for other humans?

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A recent survey published in Consumer Affairs found that millennials make up the biggest share of pet owners in the United States at 44%, while Gen Xers and GenZers tied with 20% and baby boomers came in last at 16%.

And the vast majority (81%) of the millennials surveyed admitted to loving their pets more than at least one family member, and found that 57% loved their pets more than their brother or sister, and half admitted to loving their animal more than their own mother.

In some cases, even romantic partners came in second to a pet, with 30% of respondents choosing a different kind of love.

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As far as children go, 58% of millennials said they prefer having pets to having children. This is especially true for cat owners, where the number jumps to 63%.

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If ever, knock wood, a pet required a life-saving treatment, 60% of millennials were very or extremely confident they would be able to afford it.

Of those who said they wouldn’t be able to afford it, 49% said they would take on a part-job job, or sell possessions such as televisions (43%), laptops (41%) or jewelry (29%).

Previous studies have shown that millennials are less likely to own homes and have children compared to older generations, which may be why, to them, pet ownership may seem like the best of both worlds.


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