These Are Dog Parents' Biggest Pet Peeves by State · The Wildest

Skip to main content

These Are Dog Parents’ Biggest Pet Peeves by State

As a pet parent, what annoys you most?

by Sio Hornbuckle
March 5, 2024
Sad woman sitting on a kitchen floor and looking at her dog.
Sjale / iStock
The letter "W" from the Wildest logo

Your pet wants you to read our newsletter. (Then give them a treat.)

Sign up for product updates, offers, and learn more about The Wildest, and other Mars Petcare brands. Must be over 16 years to sign up. See our privacy statement to find out how we collect and use your data, to contact us with privacy questions or to exercise your personal data rights.

Our dogs are perfect, obviously. We wouldn’t trade them for anything. But you know, pet parenting isn’t the easiest thing in the world — and sometimes it’s straight-up irritating. So when Forbes asked dog parents from all 50 states to share their pet peeves about pup guardianship, participants had some answers at the ready — and most of the U.S. was in agreement about the biggest struggles of pet parenthood.

Out of all the responses, they found that each state had one of three pet peeves as their top complaint, plus seven more that were common throughout the nation. So, if the list below makes you grit your teeth, you’re far from alone. But hey, nothing worth doing is easy, right? 

The top pet peeves of dog parents 

Forbes surveyed 10,000 dog parents from all 50 states. They asked them to choose their top annoyances out of a list of 18 common pet peeves — and they found that most people have similar complaints. 

1. Finding a dog sitter when traveling 

Thirty-seven percent of respondents said that finding a dog sitter was the most frustrating thing about pet parenting. This was the top response in all but seven states — so if you’re looking for a sitter, maybe try Maine, New York, Pennsylvania, Oregon, California, Florida, or Delaware. They seem to be having better luck. 

2. Finding dog-friendly hotels 

The second most common annoyance is finding a dog-friendly spot to crash. Georgians must be doing a lot of traveling with their dogs, because Georgia’s the only state to name this as their biggest pet peeve… either that, or Georgians just really can’t find a dog sitter.  

3. Walking and exercising the dog 

Pups demand a lot of attention to stay healthy and happy, and sometimes it’s a lot to ask. Six states have more of a struggle finding the time and energy than others: California, Delaware, Florida, New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington all listed exercising the dog as their top complaint. 

4. The cost of pet parenting 

Yep — pet parenting can be pricey. Eleven states named a pup’s price tag as the second top annoyance, and ten named it the third top annoyance. A quick tip: If you need help paying your pet’s vet bills or finding free pet food, organizations exist that can help. 

5. Excessive barking

No surprise here — barking is annoying, full stop. Utah might have some louder-than-typical pups, because Utahns named this an annoyance more than residents of any other states. 

6. Shedding

Excessive shedding is the sixth most common pet peeve. Twenty-eight percent of Vermonters are annoyed by puppy shedding…but that may just mean they have some extra fluffy pups. You win some, you lose some. 

7. Picking up dog waste 

It’s a requirement to be a good neighbor (and protect the environment), but no one likes doing it. Picking up dog waste is the seventh top complaint, with 15 percent of respondents choosing it as a pet peeve. Residents of Indiana, Montana, and Oregon listed this as their second top annoyance.

8. Taking the dog to the veterinarian 

This is probably your dog’s pet peeve, too. Plus, it’s pricey — 29 percent of survey-takers said this was their second highest pet expense (dog food was the most commonly named first highest expense). Forty percent of Floridians listed taking the dog to the vet as a major complaint.

9. Dogs dirtying the house

Pups don’t have great manners when it comes to keeping dirt off the floors and furniture. Eleven percent of respondents nationwide chose this answer, but only 4.5 percent of respondents in Washington and Florida did — they must have some extra clean pups.

10. Dogs jumping on people 

Ten percent of respondents said that dogs jumping up on them or others was a pet peeve. In Washington and Hawaii, this was the lowest annoyance, with only four percent of pet parents selecting it. 

The least annoying pet peeves

There’s some good news, though: Many common pet peeves don’t actually seem to bother a majority of pet parents all that much. Dogs lying on furniture or beds, taking the dog to the groomer, excessive drooling, checking dogs for ticks, and dogs taking over the bed were the least selected puppy annoyances. 

And even when it comes to the most infuriating moments of pup parenting, it’s not all bad — because at the end of a day, you get to hang out with a dog. That’s a win in our book. 

Sio Hornbuckle

Sio Hornbuckle is a writer living in New York City with their cat, Toni Collette.

Related articles