The Top Domains and Content for Dog and Cat Care

In this month’s performance SEO report, SectorWatch is taking a look at searches on looking after some of our favourite furry friends. We’re looking at the best performing content on dog care and cat care in Google search. Who is putting in a best-in-pedigree performance? Domains analysed and top-performing URLs listed.

The edition of SectorWatch supports the SEO for Paws initiative. On the 29th Feb, 17 SEOs and digital marketing experts got together to share knowledge in a four-hour live stream. During the event over $6000 was raised for cat and dog shelters in Ukraine. You can also donate via Anton Shulke, the organiser, here. The relevant section of the livestream is embedded below.

The saying goes that the UK is a nation of pet lovers, and the statistics back that cliche up.

We own over 51 million pets in the UK. There are over 12 million dogs, with around 31% of UK households the proud owner of a pet pooch. There are also 11 million cats, with 26% of UK households home to at least one feline friend.

This means the market for pet care is huge.

Dog owners in the UK are willing to invest significantly in the well-being of their companions, with an average annual expenditure of £1,875 per dog on food, healthcare, grooming, and other essentials. Similarly, cat owners spend around £1,500 annually on their pets, including £1200 on various care products and services.

As you might expect, this means there is good demand for searches on how to care for our favourite pets. So, who is best in show when it comes to pet care?

Top 3 domains for dog care searches:

Extended lists of domains are shown below.


Top 3 domains for cat care searches:

Extended lists of domains are shown below.


Keyword research in the pet care sector

To analyse the dog care and cat care search market, we’ve curated two sets of keywords, designed to be a representative sample of the common searches people make when looking for information on caring for their pet.

We categorise our keyword lists by their search intent so we can compare those competing for the same types of searches and find the best-performing content. In both these lists, we’re looking at ‘know’ keywords with an informational intent. These are queries where the searcher wants to learn something or find out more.

First is our list of ‘dog‘ keywords. We’ve included generic keywords such as dog care (searched 250 times a month on average in the UK), and more specific searches on related subjects like dog separation anxiety 950 searches), how to train a dog (650) and introduce puppy to dog (450).

Next is our list of ‘cat’ keywords, which is similar in structure. We have generic terms like cat health care (600 searches a month on average in the UK) and more specific care subjects such as how to introduce a kitten to a cat (800 searches a month), how to train a cat (350) and even how to pick up a cat (searched for 400 times a month on average!)

We also found a host of pet care keywords, including for cats and dogs with a ‘do’ or commercial intent. These are focused on pet sitting, dog walking and daycare. We analysed these as well to see the winners, finding the whole market of pet-sitting listing services:


You can learn more about our lists (including links to the full lists) and search intent at the end of this article. We also have a detailed step-by-step article on doing keyword research with SISTRIX tools and data where you can learn more about the process we use.

What’s trending in the pet care industry?

Using our keyword sets and our TrendWatch data we have unearthed some interesting cat and dog care subjects seeing growth in search volume:

cat health care
dog enrichment
dog experience days

For more general search trends, and the back-story to those rising keyword searches, subscribe to TrendWatch, the monthly newsletter from the SISTRIX Data Journalism Team.

The top URLs for pet care

Another feature of using the keyword lists feature is the ability to not just see the top competitors for a keyword set, but also the top individual URLs. Here is a selection of the top URLs for dog care and cat care to provide a bit of inspiration. Click on the domain to go to the URL.

The Top URLs (and leading ranking keyword) - SISTRIX SectorWatch March 2024
Website (Click to open URL)Top Keyword
www.borrowmydoggy.comcare a dog
www.rover.comdog care near me a dog
www.aspca.orghow to care dog puppy to look after a dog
www.forbes.comdog health stimulation for dogs
m.petmd.comcare a dog
animalfoundation.comhow to care dog puppy care near me
icatcare.orghow to take care for a cat about cats
www.aspca.orghow to take care for a cat
www.dailypaws.comhow to take care for a cat
www.purina.comhow to take care for a cat to take care for a cat
www.helpguide.orgwhat about cats care
www.wikihow.comhow to take care for a cat health care
www.rover.compet sitting sitting sitter near me sitting
www.borrowmydoggy.comdog walker sitting sitter near me
www.petbacker.comdog sitter near me
www.rover.comdog walker from home dog care

The top domains in the UK for pet care

We’ve seen the winners in this search market, but it’s also helpful to see a bigger picture of the types of domains that are ranking. Here are the top 25 domains for both of our keyword sets, highlighting the types of sites we should be looking at:

Top 25 domains for dog care:

The Top domains for Dog Care. Data: SISTRIX SectorWatch
DomainRelative visibility for projectTop 10 keywords

Top 25 domains for cat care:

The Top domains for Cat Care. Data: SISTRIX SectorWatch
DomainRelative visibility for projectTop 10 keywords

Content examples: What type of content is performing?

Looking at our winner lists, we immediately find some useful information:

  • The RSPCA is our big winner, ranking at the top for dog care and second for cat care searches
  • We also see a lot of other charity sites, with Bluecross, Battersea Dogs & Cats Home and the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) all ranking strongly for both cats and dogs (and the PDSA not far behind)
  • Some larger commercial brands have also managed to do well across our sets, with Vets for Pets, Pets and Home and most notably, Purina, all getting traction
  • In both our lists, more specialised sites also do very well
    • For cats, Cats Protection ( and International Cat Care (both charities) round out the top three
    • And for dogs, The Dogs Trust and the Kennel Club are other charities ranking very well

High-performance content examples

Having found our winning domains, it’s time to take a closer look and find the winning content formats in this sector.

We’re hoping to sniff out some high-performing content formats – directories and templates that are consistently successful at ranking for their target keyword topics.

One thing is clear from our list of winners – charities are winning the search market for pet care. The combination of helpful content, which naturally fits their mission of helping care for animals, and a high level of trust from their position as a charity (and plenty of links) proves a winner in this field.

Our biggest winner is the RSPCA, one of the UK’s biggest animal charities.

It ranks for 298 of our 340 cat care keywords (that’s 87%), and on page one for 191 of them (56%). It’s a similar story for dog care, with the RSPCA ranking for 211 of the 305 keywords in our set, and on page one 121 times (39.5%).

Articles from the RSPCA website make up 9 of the top 100 URLs for our cat care keywords, and 7 of top 100 URLs for dogs.

All these articles are in the Advice and Welfare directory (/adviceandwelfare/), forming a single source for all their pet care content.

If we look at this directory as a whole, we can see how big a success it is.

It ranks for 90,107 keywords in the UK, with a huge 35.6% of these page rankings likely to earn some share of the organic traffic.

Together, these keywords pull in an estimated 369,954 organic visits a month, worth £293k.

The directory has 436 URLs that rank for at least one keyword, and it covers all kinds of pets from cats and dogs to rodents, rabbits and wildlife such as feeding birds and even foxes.

We can also see that the directory has done grown over the past five years, including a big jump in visibility around the time of the March 2023 Core Update.

What makes this a successful content format for the RSCPA?

The domain enjoys some natural advantages thanks to the brand’s recognition and trust.

But beyond that, the site uses a smart directory structure and has built a wide range of articles under each subdirectory, building clusters of related content that quickly answer searcher’s questions

The advice and welfare directory has sections for pets, wildlife, farm animals and more. Within the pet section, there are subdirectories for all the popular pet types from dogs to ornamental fish. Even better, all these landing pages are in the main navigation, making them easy ot find and offer site-wide internal links.

Each landing page acts as both a hub and a general guide to caring for that pet type.

For example, the cat and kitten page is a guide to general care for feline pets with tips and health advice. It also has a selection of child pages, displayed in a grid. These are on more specific questions, such as ‘what should my cat eat?’ and ‘what to think about when buying a kitten’.

But, the RSPCA go even further.

Once you reach a child guide, such as ‘Understanding your cat’s behaviour’, once you reach the bottom you find a further selection of subtopics.

In this case, there are articles on subjects like “what does my cat’s body language mean?”. And where there are few child articles, the page instead links to related subjects.

The RPSCA then repeats this for all the pet types they cover, different farm animals, wildlife, laboratory animals, seasonal advice and plenty more besides.

A selection of ranking keywords from

This detail helps the cat page to rank for top-level cat care terms, and then the rest of the cluster ranks for individual aspects. Often, the RSPCA has short articles, providing the key information to explain the topic and not adding superfluous depth.

Put together, you have a multi-layered cluster of articles for each pet type. This is how the RPSCA site gets to 436 ranking pages just from this directory!

This gives the RSPCA the assets to target a wide range of relevant topics, all based on their insight into their customers’ needs – and likely a good bit of keyword research. They cover a wide range of common dog and cat questions, all with a structure that’s perfect for expansion into as many subjects as they can find.

Another charity with winning content is Bluecross.

They rank for 77% of our cat keywords and 68.9% of our dog keywords.

Again, they have a single directory for all their pet Advice (/advice/), which is a strong performer.

Within the directory, 508 different articles appear in the search results, with 63 of the most successful 100 being in the /dog/ subdirectory (and another 22 in the /cat/ subdirectory).

Together, these articles rank for an impressive 89,856 keywords. 24% of the rankings for the most important keywords on page one, generating an estimated 334,188 organic visits a month, worth £251k.

Moving away from the charity sector, another high-performance directory is Purina’s selection of articles:

Purina has a dedicated section on care and advice, prominently placed in the main navigation and covering a range of common questions pet owners face.

Launched in 2021, we can see the overall growth of this high-performance content, with a big rise since October’s Core Update:

These articles rank for 61% of our dog care keywords and 86.2% of our cat care keywords. Overall, the directory ranks for 82,363 keywords, with 24.46% of the most important on page one

Purina has a whopping 682 articles from this directory ranking in the UK. Together, they fetch an estimated 320,292 organic visits a month in the UK – traffic that has a value of £203k.

There are articles on everything, from what to do when bringing a kitten home to cat hunting behaviours and if bluebells are poisonous for dogs.

There is a clear search-led strategy to build a large library of useful information for pet owners as a content-marketing campaign. These are all curated into useful hubs around common themes, such as dogs, cats, kittens, puppies, feeding, healthcare and more, which offer excellent opportunities to rank for more generic pet care terms through mini-content-clusters.


  • In the pet care sector, charities dominate the field. This is a great example of how in some sectors certain business types are well-suited to do well, as long as they turn their natural advantages into a great content experience
  • For informational subjects with lots of potential questions, using top-level hub pages that introduce a subject and lead to a series of sub-topic articles is a great tactic. A combination of a topic cluster and good information architecture can take you a long way
  • Sometimes content does a great job by explaining an answer to a question, linking to potentially useful further reading, and that’s it. If you answer a searcher’s intent well, an article doesn’t have to be 5,000 words long
    • Every time you satisfy a searcher and answer their question has historically helped build your reputation with Google, and short answers to small, niche questions is a great way to do this
  • While article size might not always matter if your brand reputation and content quality are strong enough, the size of your library does matter. Many of our most successful domains in this sector have built big resource sections, with dozens or hundreds of articles on pet care. Being seen as comprehensive in scope is beneficial, alongside the internal link opportunities 

SEO For Paws

Some of the data in this report was presented by Steve Paine in a charity livestream (Starting at 5m30s ) in Feb 2024.

The video shows some of the trends (and the trend shapes) that are interesting and one of the leading domain examples above.

Our SectorWatch process

SectorWatch process overview
Above: The SectorWatch research process

For this SectorWatch, we used relevant keywords from a selection of CRM keyword discovery tables.

We chose a selection of highly targeted keywords with a ‘do‘ or ‘know‘ intent. From these, we harvest all the ranking keywords for the URLs in the SERPs. We call this the Keyword Environment. Most SERPs will have some mixed intent so we re-filter the list for the correct intents and sanitise it by hand to leave a smaller, highly-relevant set of searches made by the UK public broken down by searcher journey. The results are based only on organic result rankings.

Curated keyword set and sector click potential

Core keywords: dog care, cat care, pet care.

The full keyword set and domain list is available as a Google Sheet and further analysis can be done in the SISTRIX keyword lists feature, including competitor analysis, SERP feature analysis, questions, keyword clusters and the traffic forecast shown below.

Potential traffic for ‘dog care’ keywords and click total for position #1
Potential traffic for ‘cat care’ keywords and click total for position #1

This SectorWatch publication #17. All SectorWatch reports can be found here. SectorWatch is a monthly publication from the SISTRIX data journalism team.

Related analyses can be found in the TrendWatch newsletter, IndexWatch analysis along with specific case studies in our blog. New article notifications are available through X (Twitter) and Facebook.

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