A recent British poll confirmed what everyone reading this already knows: dogs are an integral part of the family unit. But more importantly, it confirmed that people – at least in Britain – consider dogs to be even more important than their HUMAN parents-in-law.
The poll was commissioned by Matalan (a British fashion/homeware retailer) for their Made for Modern Families marketing campaign. Whereas 21% of those polled picked their in-laws as “close family members,” 22% picked their canine companions. I know what you’re thinking – 22%? That’s it?
According to Mark Earls, a behavior expert working with Matalan:
“Pets really add to the richness of the modern family and are considered just as important as close relatives and friends. Dogs are more like us than many other pets – they’re social creatures who appreciate being part of a family and those who look after them.”
In-laws can be great, of course – mine certainly are (shout-out to Linda S. and Marty B.) – but the only shocking thing about this poll is that dogs only edged them out by a single percentage point. Either sitcoms (Everybody Loves Raymond) and movies (Monster-in-Law) have been lying to us for years about disdain for mothers and fathers-in-law or there’s some sort of in-law conspiracy going on here.
Frankly, I have a feeling that if the readers of the BarkPost had been polled on this subject, the results would’ve been very different indeed. 22%? Not likely.
As for me, my family ranking goes a little something like this – a three-way tie for the top spot between my parents, my significant other, and my dogs, followed by literally everybody else. Sorry, extended family – you’re just not nearly as adorable.