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Pets Cost Billions in Damaged Electronics

Pets Cost Billions in Damaged Electronics

We love them like children. But our pets can be costly, in more ways than one. Besides the expense of feeding them and giving them proper health care, according to a recent survey, pets damage about eight million electronic devices every year in the U.S.

The survey, sponsored by the San Francisco insurance company SquareTrade Inc., involved 1,200 people and their pets. SquareTrade estimates that we lose $3 billion every year repairing or replacing electronic devices damaged by pets. Among the most gobbled gadgets were cell phones.

Surprisingly, dogs are only twice as likely as cats to damage electronics, according to the study, and male pets are 50 percent more likely than females. I say surprisingly, because I guess I canít imagine cats chewing or even clawing at my cellphone (share your story below if you’ve had a different experience).

Almost 20 percent of Americans have seen one of their electronic devices mangled by a pet. Maybe the most interesting bit from the survey: People who allow their pets to sleep in their beds or ride on their laps while driving are up to three times more likely to have a electronics damaged by their animals. No word on a theory for the correlation.

“After seeing so many claims come in that involved pets, we decided to look into the data and see just how big a problem this was. And the results were pretty astounding,” Ty Shay, CMO at SquareTrade, told ZDNet. “Using an $800 smartphone as a chew toy is a pricey slip-up, not to mention itís the device most of us can’t live without.”

SquareTrade sells protection plans for electronic devices, such as iPhones, computers, and iPads so they obviously have a little biased interest in the results, though they are tough to deny. As more and more of us take part in additional electronic devices, such as tablets, we obviously become more vulnerable. Your best bet is to simply be vigilant about keeping them out of reach.

Also read:

Extreme Dog Grooming: Have We Gone Too Far?

6 Common Cat Behavior Myths Decoded

7 Common Dog Behavior Myths Decoded

Read more: Behavior & Communication, Cats, Dogs, Pets, ,

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Jason Knapfel is Co-Founder of, a growing resource for all things related to the beloved animals that we share our homes with.


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2:57PM PDT on Mar 18, 2015

Putting them where they can't get to them is a solution. But wouldn't it be nice if they wouldn't chew anything at all? Using positive training goes a long way to teaching them how to behave. You NEVER leave a puppy unsupervised. When you have to be out of the room take him with you on a leash attached to your belt or tied around your waist. When you have to be out of the house make sure that you have introduced your puppy to crate training (which is not mean) and if done right is seen by the puppy as a den to sleep in. If all of these steps are taken a puppy won't chew anything. Be consistent, if it's okay one day and not another the puppy will get confused and is less likely to listen to you. If you want to teach an adult dog, or a PUPPY for that matter, what is off limits keep a spray bottle, set to stream, handy and whenever your dog or PUPPY does something you don't want him to do say, "No, Buddy no chew" or no whatever you want him to stop doing and spray him with water. When he stops praise him and reward him with kibble. Be consistent, if it's okay one day and not another the dog will get confused and is less likely to listen to you. It works, this is how we trained our adopted beagle to stop barking outside.

11:59PM PST on Jan 8, 2014

I am truly keen of reading posts on the attention-grabbing topics n now I'm on the most effective place.


10:09PM PDT on Sep 7, 2013

Put your electronics out of reach - too easy.

10:03PM PDT on Sep 7, 2013


Ahem...... Electronics Cause Pet Injuries

Be responsible &

do not leave wires, remotes, anything small enough to fit into their mouths, etc. within sight & reach of the animal



What's more important here ? The electronics or the animal ?

Look at who did the survey, & note how someone is making a financial gain on this.

another story that , nevermind

11:58PM PDT on Jul 25, 2013

Thanks for posting

3:51AM PDT on Jul 20, 2013

I have a house full, ten birds and two cats there is armored conduit covering all exposed wires from appliance to wall. Mine have not ruined a single thing, however I rescued a dog that was thrown from a car and the first thing he did when we got into my house was dump over my x-box. Lesson learned my x-box now has a sturdy wooden box housing with armored conduit to the tv and receptacle. Oh and the dog was adopted within a month.

1:10AM PDT on Jul 14, 2013

If you have a pet, you have to make the house pet-proof, as if you have to make a house child-proof, when you have one. Don't blame pets or babies, blame parents. Be responsible. In all fairness to some people, it may take a few mishaps before you discover what an animal likes to destroy. Just use some common sense--assume everything!

5:36AM PDT on Jul 12, 2013

Thank you Jason, for Sharing this!

2:33AM PDT on Jul 8, 2013

This is true, if I forget any charger (mobile, laptop, etc) in plain sight, my cat chews it and it becomes useless...

11:45PM PDT on Jul 2, 2013

Had a dog that loved shoes, not electronics. Had a cat the chewed a lamp cord ONCE, got a shock, and gave all cords wide path after that. Luckily the cat had no lasting problems.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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