Wallet Hub recently ranked 100 US cities on dog-friendliness using 21 relevant metrics across three key dimensions: Pet budget, pet health and wellness, and outdoor pet-friendliness. Scottsdale AZ, was the highest-ranked city, with a score of 65.93 out of 100. Newark, NJ, was the lowest ranked city, coming in with a score of only 38.89. Kansas City came out in the middle of the pack at number 59, with a score of 47.71. Our city did well in the pet budget category, with a rank of 19. On the flip side, KC ranked very low in the areas of Pet health and wellness (#80) and outdoor pet friendliness (#62). Pet health and wellness was assessed by several important indicators, including veterinarians per capita, pet-friendly restaurants per capita, pet-friendliness of the rental market, and the strength of animal protection laws. Outdoor-pet friendliness was assessed by indicators including weather, dog parks per capita, parkland as share of city area, walk score, and pet-friendly trails per capita.
Pets are an important part of family life, and pet owners are increasingly looking at pet-friendliness when choosing a place to live. If Kansas City is to remain a competitive, growing, and vibrant urban center, it will need to become a more welcoming home for both people and pets.