Does Size Matter? If You're a Shelter Dog, It Sure Does!
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
A recent study by the research team at the Center for Shelter Dogs found that small dogs had a shorter stay in the shelter than large dogs. An analysis of the length of stay of 177 adult dogs at the Boston shelter of the Animal Rescue League of Boston revealed a statistically significant difference in length of stay between small and large dogs. All dogs in the study were relinquished in 2010 and varied by breed and age. The dogs were assigned to three groups: small (<25 lbs), medium (25-60 lbs), and large (>60 lbs). Small dogs stayed on average 15.2 fewer days in the shelter than large dogs. Small dogs stayed in the shelter an average of 20.6 days, medium dogs stayed an average of 27.1 days, and large dogs stayed an average 35.8 days. There were no statistical differences between small to medium and medium to large dogs. Shelters looking to manage their canine populations may want to consider dogs’ sizes as one of the parameters that will influence a dog’s length of stay in the shelter. The CSD will continue to investigate other factors that influence the length of stay of shelter dogs.