Acta veterinaria 2007 Volume 57, Issue 5-6, Pages: 553-561
doi:10.2298/AVB0706553V
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Body condition and physical care scales in three cases of dog hoarding from Belgrade

Vučinić Marijana, Dimitrijević I.

In the spring of 2006 Belgrade city officials were planning to take steps to reduce the city’s stray dog population. The plan was to sterilize (spay or neuter), microchip and vaccinate about 5000 dogs during the next two years. The plan was set to kick into action at the start of September in 2006, with a monthly goal of spaying or neutering at least 255 dogs. Taking the program one step further, approximately 15000 dog owners will be given free microchips for their dogs, among them owners of private dogs' shelters, too. A professional team of four members was formed with the aim to visit all private shelters for dogs in Belgrade. The team found three cases of dog hoarding. In all of them, hoarders claimed to possess a "no-kill" shelter for dogs. These hoarders were likely to exhibit characteristics between overwhelmed caregivers and rescuer hoarders. These cases of hoarding are described in this paper from the dog abuse aspect. The two parts of Tufts Animal Care and Condition (TACC) scales were used for this purpose (body condition and physical care scales). Body condition and physical care were evaluated in 429 dogs (220 dogs in the first, 157 dogs in the second and 52 dogs in the third hoarder). There were significant differences (P<0.0001) only for body condition of dogs in three cases of hoarders. Inadequate diet was the main reason for this state. Physical care of dogs ranged from borderline to terrible without significant differences between three cases of animal hoarding.

Keywords: abuse, dog, hoarding

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