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Online Relinquishments of Dogs and Cats in Australia

By Susan J Hazel, Caitlin J Jenvey, Jonathan Tuke

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The aim of this study was to analyze dog and cat advertisements on a popular online trading website in Australia in February 2016. A total of 2640 ads for dogs and 2093 ads for cats were classified as being relinquished on Gumtree. A total of 23% of dog ads and 62% of cat ads were for free animals. The median age was 1.42 years in dogs and 0.9 years in cats. Compared to the human population there were proportionately more ads in Queensland and fewer ads in Victoria. In comparison to pets from animal shelters advertised on PetRescue, there were more purebred dogs on Gumtree, although the common breeds were similar. Fifteen people who had relinquished a dog or cat on Gumtree were interviewed. They used Gumtree because they believed shelters were full, they wanted to see/interview the new owner, or because they originally got the animal on Gumtree and it works. These results shed light on a hitherto under-studied population of relinquished dogs and cats.


Katie Osborn

Date 2018
Publication Title Animals
Volume 8
Issue 2
ISBN/ISSN 2076-2615
Publisher Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
Location of Publication Basel, Switzerland
DOI 10.3390/ani8020025
Language English
Additional Language English
  1. Animal welfare
  2. Australia
  3. relinquishment