According to the, nothing brings sunshine to your day like a dog. If you don’t have your own dog, a furry encounter in the street brings a smile to your troubled heart. (More specifically, it gives you a shot of beta-endorphin, oxytocin, and dopamine.)

If you do have a dog, you can multiply your shared joy at a well-attended park, dog-friendly gym, or just sitting at your front window together yelling at all the dogs that pass. But these sightings are more common in some cities than others. Having researched the video games where you can pet the dog, Protect My Paws has now identified the cities where you’re most likely to find a dog to pet: the places with the most dogs per km2 and per 100 people.

Key findings

*  Paris, France, has 2,857 dogs per km2, the highest dog density in the world.

*  Houston in the US is home to 52.1 dogs per 100 humans, the highest ratio in the world.

*  Chicago is the major US city with the highest density of dogs (1,037 per km2).

*  Budapest, Hungary, is the European city with the highest dog:human ratio (22.8:100).

Paris, France, is the City with the Most Dogs Per KM2

It’s the ultimate accessory: one that will love you back just as much as you love it. The Parisian dog is a ubiquitous sight, with 2,857 chiens wandering gracefully around every square km. But finding a dog in ‘play mode’ was difficult until recently, as dogs were banned from 84% of the city’s parks.

Thankfully, this legal leash was loosened just before the pandemic, so the only thing stopping dogs from enjoying a little more space to social distance is that dogs don’t social distance.

Houston, Texas, Has the Highest Dog: Person Ratio in the World

If you’ve ever shared a family dog, you’ve probably been told your quarter is ‘at the back end.’ Ha ha. But on a citywide scale, very few people get even as much as a quarter of a dog. And Houston in the US is the only city where you get over half a dog (0.521 to be precise) each. Still, 12 hours a day with your allotted dog would be reasonable, if only Mayor Sylvester would roll out Borrow My Doggy as a matter of council policy.

All of the cities in our top 10 ‘per person’ table have more than 21 dogs per 100 people. But, overall, 55.6% of the cities in our study have a ratio of fewer than 10 dogs per 100 humans. This is concerning for dog-lovers since the US cat population is rising faster than its canine equivalent – and it’s much harder to get that ‘ray of sunshine’ feeling from a cat.

Let’s give a special mention to Bern, Switzerland, which has the second-highest dog:person ratio in the world and the third-highest density. And why wouldn’t you be infatuated with dogs in the region that gave us the Bernese Mountain Dog and a country that voted the Saint Bernard to be its national animal?