Singapore is the worst doggone place to be canine: study

Sad pug is sad. Why? Maybe he lives in Singapore. Photo: Matthew Henry
Sad pug is sad. Why? Maybe he lives in Singapore. Photo: Matthew Henry

It truly is a dog’s life for Singapore’s canine citizens, a study has found.

Far from being top dog, Singapore came in last among 50 cities on key canine wellness indicators, according to German pet insurer Coya. While the city-state got good marks for its pet-friendly regulations and number of vet clinics and pet stores, respondents were unhappy with its lack of pet-friendly restaurants and parks – areas that received failing grades.

“We conducted this study to help inform dog lovers and owners alike about the dog-friendliness of their local cities, and how they may compare to others around the world,” Coya chief Andrew Shaw said in a statement. “As dog lovers ourselves, we were surprised at the results and hope that it adds to the conversation about how to make cities happier places for our furry friends.”

One finding that gives owners paws is the high expense of keeping a dog, which may factor into another dubious distinction: Singapore has the highest rate of abandoned furpanions. 

The Lion City ranked just below second-worst Tokyo. Topping the list was San Francisco, which scored a pawfect 100, followed by Seattle, and Tel Aviv. 

The study also looked at the number of dogs in each city as well as the lifetime cost of caring for them. It was largely based on public data as well online surveys of dog owners around the world, though Coya did not disclose how many.

The best cities for dogs by overall score. Image: Coya
The best cities for dogs by overall score. Image: Coya

Singapore scored a dire 86 points on annual dog abandonment each year, making it the fifth worst place of the 50 cities surveyed. But the Lion City is also among cities with the fewest dogs per capita, with just 30.73 pups per 1,000 humans. 

It also costs about US$20,000 to care for a dog in Singapore, which is still nearly half that of Zurich, the most expensive dog town surveyed, where a lifetime of canine care costs about US$34,400. 

A table showing a sample of results for the top 10 cities with the most and fewest dogs per 1,000 inhabitants. Image: Coya
A table showing a sample of results for the top 10 cities with the most and fewest dogs per 1,000 inhabitants. Image: Coya
A table showing a sample of results for the top 10 cities with the lowest and highest rates of dog abandonment. Image: Coya
A table showing a sample of results for the top 10 cities with the lowest and highest rates of dog abandonment. Image: Coya

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