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Trends in U.S. Animal Control and Field Services: 2015-2022

April 23, 2024

What are the impacts of animal law enforcement on community health and well-being?

We are conducting a large study aimed at understanding animal law enforcement patterns and trends with call data provided by animal control organizations. The dataset, which is anticipated to include approximately more than 1 million calls, is being GIS mapped to identify the census tracts where calls occurred in each jurisdiction. Each census tract is associated with a Social Vulnerability Index (SVI) score, which is a measure of the community’s racial mix, socioeconomic status, and resource access. The hypothesis is that while animal laws have been over enforced within communities with high SVI scores, the organizations’ efforts to increase community-supportive engagement will be seen as reductions in enforcement and fewer punitive outcomes in these communities over time.