For this study, I took data from registered dogs in New York and combined it with attributes by breed from an academic study. Since the academic studies only give ratings for purebred dogs, I only looked at the dogs with one breed listed. (But I love my mixed breed dogs, too!)
Wondering how the breeds stack up? Here’s a complete list, and here are a few example dogs to give you an idea:
As with any study, caveats are needed. First, the study was from Germany, and studies show that a Cocker Spaniel from Germany actually might act differently than a Cocker Spaniel in another country. Second, the ratings of some breeds appeared at odds with what I found in other academic research and online. So I used another academic study by Stanley Coren, which rated North American dogs by obedience. And I’m happy to say that the overall trends were very similar.
I then combined the data. Dog registrations in New York include the borough of the owner, so I used that to calculate the overall “score” of the borough. Here’s what I found:
With regard to trainability (the blue line), Manhattan is in first place. Second place goes to Staten Island. Brooklyn and Queens after that, and in last place is… the Bronx. (Using Coren’s data, the trend was similar but the Bronx’s score was higher.) Trainability is related to intelligence, which is why I joke about which borough has the “smartest” dogs, but of course it’s a bit complex.
Calmness and sociability, the green and red lines, had a trend that was similar to trainability, and as I mention in the video, they are correlated—a dog that is sociable is also more likely to be calm.
The boldness score was high overall for New York, and I found that the boldest dogs were in Manhattan and Staten Island.
For many of the technical and statistical details of the study, click here.
New York Doggy Merch
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