MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Seattle crowned as dog poop capital, pet owners among worst in nation

May 19, 2023, 10:00 AM | Updated: 10:25 am

seattle dog owner...

A dog plays with their owner (Photo by Patrick T. Fallon via Getty Images)

(Photo by Patrick T. Fallon via Getty Images)

Seattle’s pet parents ranked among the worst in the country, according to the website Dog Advisory Council’s newest study.

Among the 25 major metro areas they deemed to be “in the doghouse,” Seattle ranked third, behind only Pittsburgh and Newark.

The self-proclaimed advocacy group analyzed Twitter complaints about owners allowing their dogs to be off-leash, bark, or fail to scoop up their pooch’s poop. In fact, the site declared Seattle to be the U.S. dog poop capital as Seattle averaged 58.3 complaints per 100,000 people for dog owners not cleaning up after their pets.

Pet owners desperate for appointments with shortage of veterinarians

Other discoveries from the findings include Newark being the most likely city to let dogs off leash in public, Cleveland having the most complaints about dogs barking and howling at night, and Tucson, Arizona being home to America’s most considerate dog owners.

San Antonio, Texas, Omaha, Nebraska, Raleigh, North Carolina, and Virginia Beach, Virginia rounded out the top 5 of best cities among dog owners.

Portland, Oregon qualified as the 22nd best city, according to the study, while two California cities (Sacramento and San Diego) ranked in the top 20.

This study’s methodology came from an analysis of geotagged tweets from the 100 most populated cities in the U.S. that contained relevant keywords for dog owner etiquette.

But it’s not all bad news for dog owners in the Puget Sound region, as Washington state ranked as the No. 10 most pet-friendly state, according to a SafeWise study last year. This study was created based on findings related to the number of pet-friendly apartments, overall pet population, laws against pets left in cars, veterinary reporting requirements, and tether laws among other qualifiers.

Earlier this year, Seattle Parks and Recreation (SPR) announced its intention to study 30 sites around the city “that may have the potential to become a future off-leash area” (OLA) for its many, many dogs. Due to increases in remote work, more than 23 million American households — nearly 1 in 5 nationwide — adopted a pet during the pandemic, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).

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Dog ownership went up by nearly 5% since the start of the pandemic in the Seattle metro area, while cat ownership increased by 18%.

This has significantly impacted the nationwide shortage of veterinarians on hand for pet appointments as, by 2030, the U.S. will need 41,000 additional veterinarians, and an additional 133,000 credentialed vet techs, in order to meet the demand, according to a recent Mars Veterinary Health report. The report also stated, with pet ownership steadily on the rise, a 33% increase in pet healthcare service spending is expected over the next 10 years.

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Seattle crowned as dog poop capital, pet owners among worst in nation