For many years now, Czechs have had a reputation of being a dog-loving nation, and a recent survey carried out the STEM / MARK agency confirms that. According to the results of the study, two out of five Czech households include dogs and what is more, forty percent of Czech dog owners allow their four-legged friends into their own bed.
The survey also suggests that mid-sized dogs, weighing between six and 24 kilogrammes, are the most popular. Vladimíra Tichá is a spokesperson for the Czech dog-breeders’ union:
“One of the most popular dog breeds are the Labrador or Golden Retrievers. They are especially popular in families with small children, because of their friendly nature.
“Young people prefer sport breeds, such as Border Collies. People who want a pet for cuddling choose Yorkshire Terriers, French Bulldogs or the Maltese.”
“I recently counted the number of puppies with a pedigree certificate born in the Czech Republic per person. It puts the country in the fourth place in Europe, just behind Scandinavia.
“However, people in Nordic countries usually don’t have cross-breeds, so when it comes to the overall number of dogs, Czechia really is one of the first in the world.”
According to the STEM /MARK survey, three quarters of Czech dogs are kept indoors. Nearly two thirds of these are allowed to lie on armchairs and sofas and two fifths can even sleep in their owners’ beds.
Psychologist Petr Šmolka says there are several reasons behind Czechs’ benevolent approach to dogs.
“One of the recent trends among young people is to get a dog as a sort training simulator, to find out whether they would be able to raise a child together.
“Also, with more and more dogs moving to cities, they are more likely to find their way into our beds. It is beneficial not only for them, but also for us.
“Even hospitals use therapy dogs these days, because they are pleasant to touch and a source of positive emotions.”
An increasing number of Czech companies allow their employees to bring their dogs to work. Gabriela Jakabová from the Brno-based firm Kentico confirms that the presence of pets contributes to a better atmosphere at the workplace:
“We have had dogs in our company since the very beginning. It was natural for us to bring them with us. Today, we have around 230 employees and there are at least one or two dogs in each office, which is between 30 and 35 in total.”