The Stray Dog Survey for 2013 has revealed some very positive facts about the stray dog population in the UK. The number of stray dogs on Britain’s streets has decreased, and more and more lost dogs are being reunited with their owners thanks to microchips no bigger than a grain of rice.

The survey, performed by Gfk NOP, revealed that the number of stray dogs in the UK has decreased by six per cent overall since 2012. This brings the total number of stray and abandoned dogs found in the last year to 111,986.

Certain regions have seen an even more positive decrease. Anglia has reported a 29 per cent reduction in stray dogs found, while Scotland saw a 22 per cent decrease. Wales reported 14 per cent fewer stray and abandoned dogs, however the most impressive region has been Northern Ireland with a reduction of 37 per cent.

This year has also seen positive results for microchipping. Over 8,000 stray dogs were reunited with their owners thanks to microchip technology. This figure is an increase of 1,000 over last year.

This figure has been a boost to the number of stray dogs reunited with their families in total. This has risen to the point that 48 per cent of stray dogs are now able to return to their owners, which means a warm bed and a bowl of premium dog food for the lucky pets.

A good proportion of strays are rehomed as well. A quarter of all strays in the UK are transferred to welfare organisations for rehoming, and nine per cent are rehomed by local authorities. That makes a total of 34 per cent of stray dogs that manage to find a new home.

Clarissa Baldwin OBE, CEO of Dogs Trust, said: “Simple steps such as microchipping can help prevent accidental strays. The fact that more dogs are being reunited with their owners because of microchips is a huge step forward.”

Ms Baldwin hopes that these results “will remind dog owners to ensure that their dog is microchipped and that their contact details are kept up to date to improve the chances of their dogs being returned to them should they stray”.

Written by: Hannah