Note: This article’s statistics come from third-party sources and do not represent the opinions of this website.

An island paradise, Hawaii has been a dream destination for years. Who hasn’t, at some point, wanted to live in this South Pacific wonderland? Still, the reality of day-to-day living in a place is often quite different from the perception, and the disparity can often result in disappointment and unpleasant surprises.

If you’ve ever wondered about what owning a pet in Hawaii looks like, we’ve put together some of the most important things you would want to know about owning and caring for a pet as a resident of the 50th state.

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The 15 Pet Ownership in Hawaii Statistics

  1. At least 60% of households in Hawaii own at least one pet.
  2. 38% of households own at least one dog.
  3. 25% of households own at least one cat.
  4. Of residents aged 20–40, who make up 24.3% of the population, 27% own pets.
  5. Of residents aged 40–60, who make up 33.9% of the population, 64% own pets.
  6. Of residents aged 60 and over, who make up 26.1% of the population, 54% own pets.
  7. $355 million was spent by owners in Hawaii on their pets in 2021.
  8. There are around 3,695 pet-related jobs in Hawaii.
  9. There are around 5,442 pet-linked jobs or jobs supporting the primary pet-based industry in Hawaii.
  10. In the Honolulu metropolitan area, only nine off-leash dog parks exist to serve 143,000 dog owners.
  11. Of dogs acquired during the COVID pandemic, 90% are still in place, and of cats acquired during the COVID pandemic, 87% are still in place.
  12. A total of 23,183 dogs and cats entered shelters in Hawaii last year.
  13. 18,142 of these dogs were saved.
  14. 2,793 were euthanized, with a 78.3% save rate.
  15. Of the nine shelters in Hawaii, only the one on Kauai is 100% no-kill.

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Pet Ownership in Hawaii

1. At least 60% of 468K households in Hawaii own at least one pet.

(Pet Hospitals of Hawaii)

This figure is significantly higher than the overall US average of 36.5%. Possible reasons for this include the climate, which allows ample time outside with pets year-round, and a percentage of free-standing dwellings with yards considerably higher than many other areas.

bernese mountain dog running and playing outdoors
Image Credit: Rita_Kochmarjova, Shutterstock

2. 38% of households own at least one dog.

(Pawlicy)

Hawaii is a highly favorable environment for dogs, with abundant outside spaces they can enjoy together with their owners.


3. 25% of households own at least one cat.

(Pawlicy)

Lower ownership of cats compared to dogs is consistent with national averages. Even so, the difference between the two percentages is wider than in many other parts of the country, especially in strictly urban locales.


4. Of residents aged 20–40, who make up 24.3% of the population, 27% own pets.

(Pawlicy)

This age group has been recognized as often seeking to delay both marriage and starting families later than most of their generational predecessors, for a variety of reasons. This is believed to have increased their preference to adopt pets.

cat owner looking at her pet
Image Credit: U__Photo, Shutterstock

5. Of residents aged 40–60, who make up 33.9% of the population, 64% own pets.

(Pawlicy)

This segment is most likely to include families with kids at home, making pet ownership highly attractive. Studies show this age group is the most interested in self-care and improvement, both of which often involve taking on pet-based relationships.


6. Of residents aged 60 and over, who make up 26.1% of the population, 54% own pets.

(Pawlicy)

People this age often become new pet owners when suddenly finding themselves on their own, whether from grown children leaving home, divorce, or the passing of a spouse.

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Economic & Social Impact of Pet Ownership

7. $355 million was spent by owners in Hawaii on their pets in 2021.

(Pet Advocacy)

It is estimated that $256 million of this constituted in-state earnings, which characterizes the pet industry as a formidable contributor to the island economy.

Dog Owner Young woman with Miniature Schnauzer dog outdoors
Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock

8. There are around 3,695 pet-related jobs in Hawaii.

(Pet Advocacy)

This sector includes such areas as veterinary and other medical services and goods, maintenance and grooming providers, food and consumables retailers, and general pet-related products.


9. There are roughly 5,442 pet-linked jobs or jobs supporting primary pet-based operations in Hawaii.

(Pet Advocacy)

These cover manufacture, supply, and transport for the primary industries, among others.


10. In the Honolulu metropolitan area, only nine off-leash dog parks exist to serve 143,000 dog owners.

(Bringfido)

Given the generally pet-friendly surroundings, this figure is surprisingly low, although legislation has been introduced to increase the numbers.

australian shephered dogs walking in the park
Image Credit: Ksenia Raykova, Shutterstock

11. Of dogs acquired during the COVID pandemic, 90% are still in place, and of cats acquired during the COVID pandemic, 87% are still in place.

(ASPCApro)

ASPCA surveys show that most households who got a pet since the beginning of COVID still have the pet in their home, and that, among animals who were rehomed, more were placed with friends, family members, and neighbors than went to shelters and rescues.

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Animal Shelters in Hawaii

12. 23,183 dogs and cats entered shelters in Hawaii last year.

(Bestfriends)

Among the seven islands, there are only nine shelters in total.


13. 18,142 of these dogs were saved.

(ASPCA)

Studies show that a strong majority of all pets, specifically dogs and cats, are acquired from commercial sellers and shops. Rescuing pets from shelters is rarely undertaken.

a couple adopting a dog from a shelter
Image Credit: hedgehog94, Shutterstock

14. 2,793 were euthanized, with a 78.3% save rate.

(Bestfriends)

This is somewhat lower than the national average save rate of 82%.


15. Of the nine shelters in Hawaii, only the one on Kauai is 100% no-kill

(Bestfriends)

Unfortunately, for shelters to increase their no-kill rating, both funding and local government support are required. In Hawaii, as has been seen, these advantages can be difficult to secure.

You can help to make every shelter no-kill.

Visit https://bestfriends.org/no-kill-2025 to find out how.

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Pet Ownership in Hawaii FAQ

Can I bring my pet to Hawaii?

(Hawaii Government)

Hawaii is the only state to be 100% rabies-free. As a result, animals on the island are not vaccinated against the disease. This requires strict enforcement of quarantine measures for any animals arriving from the mainland.

You can check the Government FAQ here. Also, you should make sure to enquire with your airline, who may have specific requirements of their own.

black and white cat sitting on the lap of its owner
Image Credit: Chamomile_Olya, Shutterstock

What is the most popular breed of dog in Hawaii?

(Khon2)

The top five dog breeds in Hawaii are:
  • Chihuahua
  • Pit Bull
  • Mixed Breed
  • Labrador
  • Pomeranian

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Conclusion

Hawaii’s unique and satisfying island lifestyle offers a wide range of unique pleasures for anyone fortunate enough to find themselves there. This can prove to be an equally fantastic experience for your pet buddies, so you can enjoy the bounty and beauty of the Aloha State together.


Featured Image Credit: Gladskikh Tatiana, Shutterstock

The post 15 Pet Ownership Statistics in Hawaii (Updated In 2024) appeared first on PangoVet.

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