The Best State for Dog Owners

By Tom •  Updated: 12/07/22 •  3 min read
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Best State To be a dog owner

We analyzed each state and weighed it against key metrics to determine which state is best for dog owners. Metrics that were considered included access to parks and nature, dog-friendly rentals, access to veterinarians, the number of dog sitters, and the state’s crime rates. Each state received a score based on how dog-friendly they were considered. These scores were then tallied to create a leader board.  

Top 10 States To Be a Dog-Owner Index

RankStateNatureDog-Friendly RentalsVeterinarianDog SittersDog Walking SafetyTotal
1Vermont7.204.5110.009.407.9339.04
2Colorado8.408.186.4410.004.9537.98
3Wyoming9.805.015.5810.007.2037.59
4Oregon8.005.105.8510.006.5235.47
5Washington7.805.724.2510.006.4934.27
6Montana9.604.698.044.754.3931.47
7Utah8.806.822.615.106.8930.22
8Idaho9.406.124.162.967.1029.74
9Maine6.004.216.004.478.7029.38
10Arizona8.409.483.283.854.2129.22

Vermont came in first place. This study revealed that the state has 62 veterinarians per 100,000 residents (56.5% above the state average), meaning Vermont residents will not have to search far and wide to find their perfect veterinarian. Vermont also ranked fourth for the highest number of dog sitters per 100,000 residents, with 16.73.   

Colorado places second and boasts the highest dog-walking score by having 24 registered dog sitters per 100,000 residents – a whopping 251.3% higher than the state average of seven.  

Ranking third is Wyoming. It scores similarly to Vermont and Colorado with dog sitters but surpasses both in nature points with only 9.8 citizens having to share 1km of parks and wildlife area – 6,838.7% lower than the state average of 680 citizens. 

Coming in fourth place is Oregon, which has a high nature score and has 34.46 kilometers of parkland and wildlife parks – 6,693.7% above the stage average of 50.723.  

Finalizing our top five, we have Washington. It scored a solid 10 when ranked for dog sitters with 16.73 dog sitter per 100,000 citizens. Washington also beats the average safety score by 30.6%.  

Further down the list, we also have Montana, Utah, and Idaho. All of which scored great in nature points.  

Maine comes in ninth place overall thanks to scoring highest of all the states for safety points (252.2% lower than any other state) and accumulated a respectable six veterinarian points due to beating the state average by 37.6%.  

Arizona finalizes our top 10 table due to having a whopping 45.06% of rental homes marked as pet friendly – 68.2% higher than the state average. 

RankStateNatureDog-Friendly RentalsVeterinarianDog SittersDog Walking SafetyTotal
1Vermont7.204.5110.009.407.9339.04
2Colorado8.408.186.4410.004.9537.98
3Wyoming9.805.015.5810.007.2037.59
4Oregon8.005.105.8510.006.5235.47
5Washington7.805.724.2510.006.4934.27
6Montana9.604.698.044.754.3931.47
7Utah8.806.822.615.106.8930.22
8Idaho9.406.124.162.967.1029.74
9Maine6.004.216.004.478.7029.38
10Arizona8.409.483.283.854.2129.22
11Wisconsin4.803.955.097.766.1427.74
12Minnesota7.405.724.753.036.6927.58
13New Hampshire6.403.056.623.238.2527.55
14South Dakota8.206.276.132.134.0226.75
15Nevada9.206.902.823.004.5126.43
16Hawaii7.002.303.026.816.9726.10
17North Carolina4.209.584.223.095.0026.09
18North Dakota7.605.065.830.936.0725.49
19Alaska10.003.924.856.470.0025.24
20Nebraska5.605.795.671.366.0124.43
21New York5.006.272.963.975.6623.86
22Florida5.405.763.553.055.4223.18
23California6.803.213.135.144.7223.00
24New Mexico9.004.573.894.540.7122.71
25Virginia2.404.494.863.327.5122.58
26Tennessee5.009.203.472.921.9722.57
27Georgia1.6010.003.292.355.2222.46
28Iowa4.404.935.910.816.3822.43
29Kansas3.407.794.511.224.9321.86
30Missouri3.608.614.111.563.5221.41
31Mississippi2.608.623.060.446.5221.25
32Oklahoma3.808.613.200.984.5321.11
33Alabama3.009.083.680.734.5921.07
34Indiana0.609.573.821.035.7320.74
35West Virginia6.603.132.722.095.7520.30
36Kentucky1.206.794.290.886.9120.08
37Massachusetts2.002.984.394.146.3119.82
38South Carolina0.408.144.102.733.6719.03
39Pennsylvania4.003.923.352.085.3518.70
40Ohio0.206.204.561.246.3118.52
41Arkansas5.807.132.560.891.9818.35
42Connecticut1.402.604.122.047.8317.99
43Texas2.804.162.953.104.6717.68
44Michigan4.603.533.661.564.2917.65
45Rhode Island1.002.093.683.447.2517.46
46Maryland0.804.404.562.235.2317.22
47Illinois1.805.193.252.034.9217.19
48New Jersey2.202.763.081.277.6716.98
49Delaware3.202.984.181.644.8516.85
50Louisiana6.202.563.281.192.3715.60

Methodology: Each state was awarded a point score determined by how highly they scored against five key metrics. Each metric was given a maximum final score of 10.  Each metric score was tallied up to reveal a fair winner.  

Sources: Zillow, Federal highway administration (FHWA), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA); Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), FBI  

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Tom

Tom has always loved to write since he was little - he wanted to be either a writer or a veterinary doctor, but he ended up being a professional writer while most of his works are based on animals. He was born in San Francisco but later moved to Texas to continue his job as a writer. He graduated from the University of San Francisco where he studied biotechnology. He is happily married and a soon to be father!