2020 Best Cities for Dogs

The best cities for your four-legged friend

Best Cities for Dogs 2020

We’re so obsessed with dogs at Coya, that our furry friends even have their own Instagram page. Having a canine companion during the Covid-19 crisis has been invaluable. A dog offers much-needed affection and the perfect excuse to go for a walk. With a record number of adoptions during the pandemic, it’s clear that we’re not the only ones who’ve realised the value of a puppy pal.

However, as the economy begins to feel the true impact of the crisis, some animal owners are just one accident away from being unable to afford their pet if they don’t have dog insurance. Rescue centres worry about a sharp increase in returning pups because the owner is unable to pay for the pet or circumstances surrounding the care of the animal have changed when moving jobs or getting back to work after unemployment. Dog ownership is no simple or easy responsibility - even in the best of times. But we want to help our fellow dog owners and lovers by providing as much data about the world of dogs. That is why we commissioned this study.

The study aims to reveal not only those cities which are best catered for dog owners, with superior pooch-friendly infrastructure, but also those where dogs are treated better according to the abandonment rate. The data also looks at where dog owners do and don’t follow the rules (and yes, we do mean picking up poop), and which cities are committed to keeping the streets clean and safe for pooches by penalising misbehaviour.

Where did our study start? We took a list of cities around the globe previously cited as a good location for dogs. We finalized the list of 50 locations with comparable and available data. We then considered what makes a city perfect for a pooch: Plentiful parks, pet stores, vets, and dog-friendly establishments such as hotels and restaurants. These all contribute towards a paw-fect dog infrastructure in a city. As any pet owner knows, as much as we love them, doggos can cost a bundle, so the lifetime cost of keeping a dog was also taken into account.

To paint a picture of how many pups live in each city, we calculated an estimate of dogs per capita for every location. And to determine how responsible dog owners are in each city, we investigated how many dogs are abandoned each year and the official fines for not cleaning up dog mess. To complement our findings, we also asked residents in each city to rate responsible dog ownership in their area with regards to how responsible dog owners are in cleaning up their pet’s poop. The final results reveal which cities are home to the happiest hounds. 

Each column in the below table is filterable, from highest to lowest and vice versa. Where columns are scored out of 100, the higher the score, the better. The default ranking for the table is the total score.

Legend

Dogs/capita (1,000 inhabitants)
# Vets/Dogs (Score)
# Pet Stores (Score)
Dog-friendly Restaurants (Score)
Dog-friendly Hotels (Score)
Dog Parks (Score)
Lifetime Costs (USD)
Abandoned Dogs/Year (Score)
Dog Waste Fine (Score)
Dog Waste Survey (Score)

Results

Infrastructure
Costs
Regulation & Ownership
#
City
Country
Dogs/capita (1,000 inhabitants)
Total Score
1
San Francisco
USA
139.87
82.45
96.05
100.00
90.35
87.29
19845.22
91.14
94.18
97.52
100.00
2
Seattle
USA
246.67
81.50
99.71
99.84
94.35
86.26
18918.79
87.30
69.49
97.17
99.08
3
Tel Aviv
Israel
182.10
88.51
100.00
94.53
84.23
87.42
22723.37
88.82
84.79
79.24
95.04
4
Prague
Czechia
152.98
74.28
84.61
88.86
96.30
75.63
11858.72
97.91
92.44
77.34
93.46
5
Hamburg
Germany
110.12
75.05
83.21
89.93
95.67
86.96
14889.73
96.45
64.12
79.25
92.29
6
Barcelona
Spain
92.81
81.85
86.58
85.42
84.79
87.78
15153.44
94.78
95.56
63.81
91.15
7
Warsaw
Poland
66.80
89.53
85.55
79.32
97.88
83.43
10428.40
97.04
79.12
78.99
89.79
8
Chicago
USA
57.93
86.89
91.50
86.57
93.55
89.52
17662.12
87.08
91.75
86.15
89.30
9
Toronto
Canada
65.81
86.07
98.01
74.67
93.74
88.85
18008.91
98.24
87.41
76.28
88.67
10
Lisbon
Portugal
145.69
90.60
93.39
79.40
78.80
75.62
12439.24
98.78
69.71
71.82
88.50
11
Copenhagen
Denmark
87.17
73.92
97.86
83.56
92.67
83.65
23418.95
99.13
73.40
87.07
87.97
12
Madrid
Spain
86.75
76.78
80.42
77.60
88.20
94.30
15106.03
90.25
100.00
63.79
87.95
13
Vienna
Austria
68.05
89.89
80.87
86.51
97.49
82.32
16925.99
95.47
70.06
81.60
87.86
14
Munich
Germany
58.41
90.80
86.70
88.31
98.22
76.93
16145.92
98.54
74.65
75.34
87.75
15
Melbourne
Australia
46.32
87.53
83.78
75.18
67.03
96.33
14227.17
96.52
82.64
84.22
87.10
16
Montreal
Canada
81.47
82.73
97.54
77.03
88.90
80.39
15942.91
98.75
73.04
83.72
87.03
17
Berlin
Germany
71.42
82.21
76.14
90.21
98.15
78.86
14303.09
95.43
65.94
72.33
86.58
18
Los Angeles
USA
91.92
72.50
91.62
95.83
90.85
91.27
17314.71
69.44
76.46
87.74
86.23
19
Stockholm
Sweden
134.76
50.00
95.67
70.00
94.14
89.66
20399.01
98.46
77.44
85.92
85.45
20
Milan
Italy
83.92
94.73
83.90
85.12
96.77
77.35
20103.11
94.97
61.94
82.78
85.25
#
City
Country
Total Score
1
San Francisco
USA
139.87
82.45
96.05
100.00
90.35
87.29
19845.22
91.14
94.18
97.52
100.00
2
Seattle
USA
246.67
81.50
99.71
99.84
94.35
86.26
18918.79
87.30
69.49
97.17
99.08
3
Tel Aviv
Israel
182.10
88.51
100.00
94.53
84.23
87.42
22723.37
88.82
84.79
79.24
95.04
4
Prague
Czechia
152.98
74.28
84.61
88.86
96.30
75.63
11858.72
97.91
92.44
77.34
93.46
5
Hamburg
Germany
110.12
75.05
83.21
89.93
95.67
86.96
14889.73
96.45
64.12
79.25
92.29
6
Barcelona
Spain
92.81
81.85
86.58
85.42
84.79
87.78
15153.44
94.78
95.56
63.81
91.15
7
Warsaw
Poland
66.80
89.53
85.55
79.32
97.88
83.43
10428.40
97.04
79.12
78.99
89.79
8
Chicago
USA
57.93
86.89
91.50
86.57
93.55
89.52
17662.12
87.08
91.75
86.15
89.30
9
Toronto
Canada
65.81
86.07
98.01
74.67
93.74
88.85
18008.91
98.24
87.41
76.28
88.67
10
Lisbon
Portugal
145.69
90.60
93.39
79.40
78.80
75.62
12439.24
98.78
69.71
71.82
88.50
11
Copenhagen
Denmark
87.17
73.92
97.86
83.56
92.67
83.65
23418.95
99.13
73.40
87.07
87.97
12
Madrid
Spain
86.75
76.78
80.42
77.60
88.20
94.30
15106.03
90.25
100.00
63.79
87.95
13
Vienna
Austria
68.05
89.89
80.87
86.51
97.49
82.32
16925.99
95.47
70.06
81.60
87.86
14
Munich
Germany
58.41
90.80
86.70
88.31
98.22
76.93
16145.92
98.54
74.65
75.34
87.75
15
Melbourne
Australia
46.32
87.53
83.78
75.18
67.03
96.33
14227.17
96.52
82.64
84.22
87.10
16
Montreal
Canada
81.47
82.73
97.54
77.03
88.90
80.39
15942.91
98.75
73.04
83.72
87.03
17
Berlin
Germany
71.42
82.21
76.14
90.21
98.15
78.86
14303.09
95.43
65.94
72.33
86.58
18
Los Angeles
USA
91.92
72.50
91.62
95.83
90.85
91.27
17314.71
69.44
76.46
87.74
86.23
19
Stockholm
Sweden
134.76
50.00
95.67
70.00
94.14
89.66
20399.01
98.46
77.44
85.92
85.45
20
Milan
Italy
83.92
94.73
83.90
85.12
96.77
77.35
20103.11
94.97
61.94
82.78
85.25
21
Helsinki
Finland
107.36
70.93
84.21
77.00
100.00
81.76
19115.09
98.47
67.49
85.56
85.12
22
Graz
Austria
52.77
95.38
77.65
78.83
99.76
79.72
18497.90
99.57
74.19
87.95
84.73
23
Vancouver
Canada
58.86
81.54
89.64
70.97
95.31
86.58
18001.57
98.75
83.25
81.60
84.62
24
Cologne
Germany
72.27
84.47
67.96
84.67
96.05
78.68
14135.19
98.71
50.00
85.20
84.62
25
Miami
USA
187.66
69.10
94.64
98.09
90.29
85.11
17702.87
57.58
68.61
100.00
83.60
26
Frankfurt
Germany
51.10
91.52
50.00
91.74
96.79
71.06
15513.67
99.37
74.65
82.52
82.91
27
Paris
France
79.15
80.58
73.93
92.48
91.89
72.12
18356.41
97.88
73.55
50.00
82.36
28
Dublin
Ireland
92.45
85.84
91.96
73.66
66.60
75.10
16398.79
97.52
82.36
81.18
82.30
29
Geneva
Switzerland
132.10
78.23
85.59
87.76
98.74
65.73
32420.42
99.75
84.81
89.73
82.17
30
Oslo
Norway
94.08
86.51
90.61
67.67
93.05
74.33
24879.62
99.86
94.88
89.08
81.20
31
Amsterdam
Netherlands
44.20
86.22
90.97
89.75
79.65
68.02
20907.27
99.83
73.88
82.66
80.65
32
Edinburgh
UK
55.39
91.14
91.57
83.93
88.43
68.06
23282.51
99.35
76.52
84.62
80.64
33
Montpellier
France
92.41
86.59
82.31
87.14
98.57
50.00
14800.28
99.74
65.94
79.80
79.01
34
Sydney
Australia
25.06
96.95
83.11
76.20
64.73
93.73
15983.17
98.14
83.69
81.71
78.19
35
Marseille
France
116.95
75.62
64.88
79.78
98.00
61.14
15220.64
98.82
73.55
72.48
77.78
36
Manchester
UK
76.38
83.20
88.78
72.35
86.73
70.68
22214.06
97.77
79.01
83.58
77.62
37
Dresden
Germany
44.20
95.48
83.21
83.82
99.52
54.98
15447.35
99.64
65.94
88.72
76.96
38
New York
USA
71.97
68.98
88.20
88.72
93.60
100.00
21445.02
50.00
86.60
80.64
76.06
39
Munster
Germany
64.18
89.65
78.13
73.58
97.79
60.04
13658.42
99.70
50.00
92.94
75.66
40
Bremen
Germany
25.24
100.00
85.10
80.90
98.96
73.08
13579.65
99.82
65.94
82.31
75.50
41
Stuttgart
Germany
45.40
88.49
76.23
84.01
98.19
58.42
14597.45
99.56
61.94
70.22
74.98
42
Leipzig
Germany
76.86
88.30
81.10
84.23
99.73
50.37
13629.40
99.28
50.00
66.59
74.68
43
Brussels
Belgium
82.83
79.46
73.80
74.87
91.73
66.69
18395.66
89.47
91.67
59.41
72.90
44
Rome
Italy
178.17
67.81
80.39
83.78
92.49
62.48
18340.36
77.36
61.94
68.83
71.15
45
Auckland
New Zealand
66.38
80.25
78.45
55.71
67.53
82.23
18893.22
95.62
83.96
63.67
70.89
46
Zurich
Switzerland
28.87
97.23
65.52
91.80
98.75
63.03
34456.63
99.93
69.31
87.19
69.10
47
Basel
Switzerland
29.28
87.61
77.55
85.94
99.19
62.38
33210.17
100.00
77.14
88.87
68.59
48
London
UK
25.06
86.09
64.98
76.09
79.91
87.52
26332.44
94.32
71.23
73.09
65.83
49
Tokyo
Japan
63.33
61.43
70.13
78.66
50.00
76.71
32010.41
84.78
75.68
93.21
65.41
50
Singapore
Singapore
30.73
70.72
89.97
50.00
68.54
52.26
20298.51
86.30
98.14
83.43
50.00
SHOW MORE+
SHOW LESS -

Methodology

The 2020 Best Cities for Dogs Index compares and analyses the conditions for dogs in 50 major dog-friendly cities around the world. The study does not reflect ‘the best and worst’ cities for dogs but instead evaluates the dog-friendly environment of these cities based on factors related to dog ownership.

The study focuses on three main categories - Infrastructure; Cost; Regulation and Ownership. The following ten factors contributed to our rating of what makes a city dog-friendly.

Infrastructure

  • Dogs/capita (1,000 inhabitants)
  • Number of Vets/Dog (Score)
  • Number of Pet Stores (Score)
  • Dog-friendly Restaurants (Score)
  • Dog-friendly Hotels (Score)
  • Dog Parks (Score)

Cost

  • Lifetime Costs (USD)

Regulation and Ownership

  • Abandoned Dogs/Year (Score)
  • Dog Waste Fine (Score)
  • Dog Waste Survey (Score)

The methods used to find each factor are described in detail below. All of the information collected is based on the latest data available.

SCORING

In cases where a factor consisted of one or more indicators, these were scored and averaged. The equation for scores is as follows:

z-Score = (x - mean(X)) / Standard deviation(X) in short (x - μ)/σ

For columns where a low value is better, for example, a low number of abandoned dogs, the score is inverted such that it is attributed a higher score:

z-Score inverted = -1 * (x - mean(X)) / Standard deviation(X) in short  -1 * (x - μ)/σ

Where present for a factor, scores are normalised such that 50 equals the lowest value in the final dataset and 100 the highest value in the final dataset. Therefore, the higher the score, the better the city ranks for that factor in comparison to the other cities in the index. The equation for normalization is as follows:

score = (100-50) * (x - min(X)) / (max(X) - min(X)) + 50

Survey

A web-survey of residents of the cities in this index was run between 10 and 17 August 2020. The responses were used to calculate the entire score for the factor “Dog Waste Survey (Score)”. 

Furthermore, the responses were used in conjunction with other indicators in the calculation of two other factors:

  • Dog-friendly restaurants (Score)
  • Dog Parks (Score)

Details are provided below within the Factor descriptions.

FACTORS

Dogs/capita (1,000 inhabitants)

Estimated number of owned dogs per 1,000 inhabitants. Refers to the total number of dogs owned in each city.

  • The data utilises household surveys, the number of registered dogs from local authorities, and estimates from local media. 
  • In most cases, the data was collected for the city area. In some cases, data was collected for the broader metropolitan area (e. g. Greater London). In a few cases it was collected for the state (e. g. Canton of Geneva) and in three cases it is referring to the country as a whole (Lisbon, Dublin and Oslo).
  • In instances where data was not available from a household survey or an estimate, linear regression (Regression Analysis) was applied to estimate the total number of dogs. In these cases, the number of registered dogs was utilised to predict the total number of dogs. Further details of the regression calculations can be provided upon request.

Sources: Local Authorities, local media, as well as NGOs and pet food companies

Number of Vets/Dog (Score)

Ratio of the number of veterinarians and veterinary institutions to the estimated number of dogs.

  • The number of veterinarians and veterinary institutions was determined using Yelp, Google maps, as well as other sources like Yellow pages.
  • The number of veterinarians and veterinary institutions was divided by the estimated number of dogs (Dogs per 1,000 inhabitants).
  • The data was scored according to the methodology in section “Scoring”. A high score indicates a high ratio of the number of veterinarians and veterinary institutions to the total number of dogs.

Sources: Yelp, Google maps, Yellow Pages among other local sources

Number of Pet Stores (Score)

Number of pet stores per capita.

  • The number of pet stores was determined using Yelp, Google maps, as well as other sources like Yellow pages.
  • The number of pet stores was divided by the city population.
  • The data was scored according to the methodology in section “Scoring”. A high score indicates a high number of pet stores per capita.

Sources: Yelp, Google maps, Yellow Pages among other local sources

Dog-friendly restaurants (Score)

A combination of the number of restaurants where dogs are allowed divided by the city population; and results from a survey of city residents.

  • The number of restaurants where dogs are allowed was determined using Yelp as well as other sources like Tripadvisor and local authorities.
  • Includes results from a survey of residents in each city who were asked the following question: “How easy is it to find restaurants in your city that accept dogs? (Easy/Difficult on a scale from 1-7).”
  • The data was scored according to the methodology in section “Scoring”, with the survey responses contributing 10% to the score. A high score indicates a high number of dog-friendly restaurants per capita.

Sources: Yelp, Tripadvisor, local sources, survey results.

Dog-friendly hotels (Score)

Number of hotels where dogs are allowed divided by the total number of hotels.

  • The total number of hotels and the number of hotels where dogs are allowed was determined using Booking.com.
  • Share of hotels where dogs are allowed was calculated by dividing the number of hotels where dogs are allowed by the total number of hotels.
  • The data was scored according to the methodology in section “Scoring”. A high score indicates a high number of dog-friendly hotels.

Sources: Booking.com

Dog Parks (Score)

A combination of the number of parks marked as dog parks; and results from a survey of city residents.

  • The number of parks which are tagged as “Dog Parks” was determined using Yelp.
  • Includes results from a survey of residents in each city who were asked the following question: “How would you rate the availability of parks, green spaces and/or beaches in your city that welcome dogs? (Score, 1-100).”
  • The data was scored according to the methodology in section “Scoring”, with the survey responses contributing 10% to the score. A high score indicates a high number of dog parks as well as positive survey results.

Sources: Yelp, survey results.

Lifetime Costs

Accumulated cost of owning a dog throughout its entire life (in USD).

  • The lifetime costs were estimated using country-level survey data and city-level cost of living.
  • In instances where country data was not available, linear regression (Regression Analysis) was applied to estimate the missing values using Numbeo’s Cost of Living Index (Country). Further details of the regression calculations can be provided upon request.
  • City-level estimates were calculated by extrapolating the country level values across cities using city-level cost of living data:

Cost Estimate (City) = Cost Estimate Country * (Numbeo Cost of Living Index (City) / Numbeo Cost of Living Index (Country))

Sources: Finty (Pet Ownership Costs Around the World), Numbeo

Exchange rate took place from EUR to USD on 18th August 2020.

Abandoned Dogs per Year (Score)

Estimated number of abandoned dogs per year.

  • Numbers of shelter intakes per year according to local authorities, media reports, and NGOs.
  • Shelter intake numbers were collected for each country, divided by the total number of dogs per country and then multiplied by the estimated number of dogs per city.
  • The data was scored according to the methodology in section “Scoring”. A high score indicates a low ratio of the number of abandoned dogs to the total number of dogs.

Sources: Local Authorities, animal shelters, local media as well as NGOs

Dog Waste Fine (Score)

Score based on the minimum fine a dog owner would need to pay for not removing dog waste.

  • Fine information was collected from local authorities and media reports for each city.
  • The data was scored according to the methodology in section “Scoring”. A high score indicates higher fines.

Sources: Local Authorities, media reports

Dog Waste Survey (Score)

Score is calculated from the responses to a web survey run in August 2020, in which residents were asked about dog owners and dog waste in their city.

  • Respondents were asked the following two questions:
  • How responsible would you say dog owners in your city are when it comes to cleaning up their dog mess? (Score, 1-100)
  • In my city, dog waste left lying around is a significant problem (Agree/Disagree on a scale from 1-7)
  • The final score was calculated by averaging the Z-Scores computed from both responses, according to the methodology in section “Scoring”.

Unsere Hundehaftpflicht

ZUM SEITENANFANG

Der Coya Hundeclub– All you need to know about dogs

Contrary to popular belief, Lorem Ipsum is not simply random text. It has roots in a piece of classical Latin literature from 45 BC, making it over 2000 years old. Richard McClintock, a Latin professor at Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia, looked up one of the more obscure Latin words, consectetur, from a Lorem Ipsum passage, and going through the cites of the word in classical literature, discovered the undoubtable source. Lorem Ipsum comes from sections 1.10.32 and 1.10.33 of "de Finibus Bonorum et Malorum" (The Extremes of Good and Evil) by Cicero, written in 45 BC. This book is a treatise on the theory of ethics, very popular during the Renaissance. The first line of Lorem Ipsum, "Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet..", comes from a line in section 1.10.32.The standard chunk of Lorem Ipsum used since the 1500s is reproduced below for those interested. Sections 1.10.32 and 1.10.33 from "de Finibus Bonorum et Malorum" by Cicero are also reproduced in their exact original form, accompanied by English versions from the 1914 translation by H. Rackham.

More Pawtection with Coya

At Coya, we're all about dogs! We love them as our office companions. They inspire us to create the best protections for fellow pups and owners. And who can resist adoring all the dogs (pure or mixed breed, big or small, fluffy or hairy) in our community? If you love dogs as much as we do at Coya, you'll love checking out the following websites, resources, and insurances we've collected.

FROM € 5.99 / MO.

Dog Liability

Those cute puppy eyes won’t get you or your dog out of paying for damages that your four-legged friend has caused someone.

coming soon

Pet health Insurance

Your pet should always be fit & healthy – regardless of your financial situation. That’s why it is important to have health insurance for your fluffy companion, similar to your own.

Coyas Hundeclub

At Coya, we love dogs and everything about them. If you’re here, you probably do too. And that's why we have set up this website - just for you.