Pet owners may tighten belts before leashes

Survey results released last month at the North American Veterinary Conference showed that pet owners are more likely to cut back on other monthly expenses before skimping on care or supplies for their pets.

The online survey of 665 pet owners (including 602 who have a dog or cat) was conducted in late December by Fleishman-Hillard International Communications, "to help give our animal care clients better insight into how changes in the economy might affect their plans for 2008," said Brian Cox, Fleishman-Hillard senior vice president, quoted in a Reuters article about the survey.