Skip to main content

PawTracks may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

4 2023 pet trends we’re happy to see (and 1 we’re not)

Pet care trends to look forward to in 2023, according to experts

Every time a new year rolls around, we can’t help but think ahead. That’s what New Year’s resolutions are all about, right? Whatever our goals for the next 365 days may be, though, making predictions for the following year is nothing short of fun. What do you think 2023 will be like for us and our animal companions?

It’s impossible to know for sure what the most popular pet trends of 2023 will be, but these animal experts have an idea. From the positive to negative and everything in between, these are next year’s predictions.

A Jack Russell terrier holds a colorful ball in his mouth

Behavioral problems in pets are at an all-time high, and they aren’t predicted to drop anytime soon

Dog trainers and behaviorists are particularly concerned about the increasing number of behavioral issues they’re seeing in new clients. Just ask Elissa Weimer-Sentner, founder of Paw & Order Dog Training. She explained, “With the rise in pet adoptions and breedings, the need for training is at its greatest. There has been a rise in treating your animals like humans (which is okay in moderation), but we are doing our animals a huge disservice.” It’s the lack of boundaries and consistency that leads to problematic behaviors, but that doesn’t mean it’s the end-all and be-all.

Ali Smith — dog trainer and founder of Rebarkable — hopes that, although the number of behavior problems may rise, more positive methods of training will help combat them in the long term. And Weimer-Sentner agrees, noting that many of her clients hadn’t found solutions “because the trainer wasn’t open to other methods.”

A white shepherd dog runs through the grass with a toy in his mouth

Positive reinforcement training is becoming the go-to, and for very good reasons

As these experts hinted at, most pets that have behavioral issues respond well to a more positive training method. Luckily, pet parents and trainers are starting to see this!

Smith said, “With Petco dropping e-collars last year, with Chewy supporting positive reinforcement, and with AVSAB coming out with their position late last year? I’m fully expecting the transition toward positive reinforcement-based training.” But why is positive reinforcement making such a difference?

Renee Rhoades, head dog behavior consultant at R+Dogs, explained it like this: “Positive reinforcement methods are the most ethical way to train and modify our dog’s behavior. Positive reinforcement is synonymous with labels such as fear-free, force-free, and evidence-based. It often includes a more holistic approach looking at areas such as physical health, epigenetics, nutrition, enrichment, and ethology, just to name a few.” As you can see, this kind of training focuses on a lot more than stopping unwanted behaviors. It’s about canine well-being as a whole! 

A brown dog eats from a white dog bowl in the middle of the floor

More and more pet owners are looking to upgrade their fur baby’s food to meet their individual needs

Just as you’d politely decline a meal with questionable ingredients, pet parents are doing the same for their furry friends.

Patrik Holmboe is the head veterinarian for Cooper Pet Care, the leading veterinary telemedicine provider in the Netherlands. As one can imagine, he gets to know a lot of pets and the diets they follow. He said, “Pets are more and more part of the family, meaning that pet owners are more and more willing to give their pets similar care that they would a human family member.” That care, of course, applies to food.

With more owners in search of the best possible pet food, they end up “looking for foods where they know exactly what the ingredients are, and how those ingredients are sourced.”

“Additionally,” Holmboe explained, “many pet owners are moving away from traditional kibble/canned food — and towards alternative foods, such as fresh, freeze-dried, and home-cooked. It is still up in the air whether these new food types are actually better for our animals — but the marketing is good!” As with any large change to an animal’s routine, we recommend speaking with a veterinarian before switching up your pet’s diet.

A border collie dog looks into the camera with an open mouth

Mental health awareness isn’t just for humans anymore

With more and more pets being treated like members of the family, animal mental health is becoming a larger topic of conversation. Renee Rhoades of R+ Dogs supports this movement wholeheartedly, even creating the hashtag #MentalHealthMattersforDogsToo to raise awareness on social media.

“Neuroscientist Gregory Burns stated ‘Dogs are people too,’ concluding we are more alike to our dogs than different,” she shared. “Riding along the coattails of the Mental Health Matters movement has been the awareness that our dog’s mental health is just as important as ours. After all, our co-evolutionary journey is not just a fluke, we do have an incredibly special bond and science confirms it.”

That makes perfect sense, especially considering the special ways our pets can connect with us. Perhaps this is the year to include your four-legged friend in your New Year’s resolutions.

A veterinarian and her assistant use a stethoscope to listen to a Pomeranian's heart

Virtual health care is here to stay, whether you’re a person or a pet

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed a lot about pet ownership, but one ‘fad’ is here to stay: virtual health care. In fact, Rhodes says that the transition has already begun in her field.

“This [transition] has built into a revolutionary shift in accessibility and efficiency within the industry. No longer are dog guardians limited to their neighborhood dog trainer, behavior consultant, or veterinary behaviorist. Accessing experts within their fields is now easier than ever.” 

Of course, this applies to veterinary care, too. Patrik Holmboe and Cooper Pet Care are leading the charge of telemedicine in the Netherlands, where he’s seen the industry shift. He said, “This involves doing more online (whether this is ordering of food and medicines, or telemedicine/texting prior to a physical vet visit).”

What did you think of these predicted 2023 pet trends? Were they anything like what you were expecting? We know we were pleasantly surprised to hear about mental health care for pets, but we totally saw telemedicine for animals coming. Now we’re so curious to see how these trends actually go in the new year!

Editors' Recommendations

Gabrielle LaFrank
Gabrielle LaFrank has written for sites such as Psych2Go, Elite Daily, and, currently, PawTracks. When she's not writing, you…
All about the incredible greyhound dog
Love the greyhound dog breed? Here's what to know about these canines
A greyhound on a fuzzy rug

The greyhound dog breed has a sweet but noble demeanor. These large-sized hounds are built for speed with a narrow, aerodynamic body perfect for running down prey. History traces these dogs back to ancient Egypt.

Today, the pups like to track down treats. However, the breed has been at the center of controversy -- through no fault of their own. Because of their speed, they’ve been used as race dogs, a practice now illegal in most states in the U.S.

Read more
Here are 60 cute dog names for every aesthetic: cottagecore, grunge, Y2K, and more
These unique dog names are inspired by aesthetics, like barbiecore
A corgi dog standing in front of a pink background looks up and to the side with big eyes

If you spend enough time on social media -- particularly sites like Tumblr, Pinterest, or TikTok -- you'll become at least somewhat familiar with "aesthetics." These are moods or styles that influence art, clothing and decor choices, and even what someone posts online. Any vibe can be an aesthetic if it drives your style choices, so why not let your favorite aesthetics inspire your new dog's name as well?
These canine monikers range from timeless to eccentric (and everything in between), but they all have one thing in common: They're all sure to put a smile on your face. Whether they remind you of something adorable, something nostalgic, or something totally epic, these cute dog names are the perfect wealth of information to start your search with.

Cottagecore dog names inspired by the cute, woodsy aesthetic that's trending right now
Of all the popular aesthetics on the internet right now, cottagecore is arguably the most popular. These vibes can be described as natural, romantic, and vintage -- and they're just about every gardener's dream come true. If you've ever imagined yourself tending a garden and knitting a sweater in the English countryside or foraging for mushrooms in the forest with your animal companion, this aesthetic might be for you.

Read more
These are the 10 most popular cat breeds, as counted by The Cat Fanciers’ Association
Here are the top 10 most popular cat breeds in the world
A Devon Rex cat is held up against a blue sky

The Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) recognizes 46 different feline breeds, but not all of them can be the most popular. That's why the CFA took a look into its registries to determine the top 10 most popular cat breeds of 2022. It welcomes registrations from "nonstandard" and "non-pedigreed" cats as well, but those feline friends weren't included in this particular count.

Which types of cats do you think were the most popular in 2022? Whether you can list off every breed or can't even name one, we guarantee there's at least one surprise on this list.

Read more