An encouraging 51% of stray dogs picked up by local authorities in the UK were reunited with their owners according to the 2010 Dogs Trust Stray Dog Survey.
An encouraging 51% of stray dogs picked up by Local Authorities in the UK were reunited with their owners according to the 2010 Dogs Trust Stray Dog Survey.
This result compares with 42% last year and is only the second time the figure has gone through the 50% barrier since survey records began in 1997. Where the method used to return stray dogs was identified, the proportion of dogs returned through microchipping was 35% – up from 31% last year.
The annual Stray Dog Survey, conducted by GfK NOP on behalf of Dogs Trust, shows an overall increase in instances of straying (from 107,228 to 121,693). However, taking into account the number of dogs reclaimed or returned to owner, (45,329 in 2009 and 61,908 in 2010) the trust has estimated that the number of dogs actually abandoned this year (approximately 59,785) has fallen by 3%.
Further, there has been a considerable decline in the number of dogs being put to sleep by local authorities – Down from 9,310 in last year’s survey to 6,404 this year.
Dogs Trust is delighted at the progress local authorities have made in bringing down these numbers and their efforts in rehoming and returning so many dogs to their owners.
Dogs Trust chief executive Clarissa Baldwin said: “Dogs Trust is encouraged to see that although the instances of straying in the UK has increased in the last two years, the percentage of these dogs being reunited with their owners has increased and, more importantly, the numbers being put to sleep has fallen drastically.
Also, echoing the Dogs Trust’s repeated call for the introduction of a compulsory microchipping in the UK, she adding: “We are delighted to see that microchipping is having a serious impact on the stray dog situation in the UK […] A compulsory microchipping system would undoubtedly improve the situation further.”