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20 U.S. Cities That are the Most Dangerous for Animals

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If you’ve ever owned a pet, you know just how easy it is for an animal to become an important part of your family. Although animals and humans don’t speak the same language, sometimes there’s no better companion. However, people with pets also know that trying to find the perfect place to live can also be a bit challenging.  Whether you’re stuck finding apartments that don’t allow animals, or simply feel like certain areas wouldn’t be good for your pet’s needs – the struggle can be pretty intimidating. Well, if you’re on the move or planning your next vacation, your search will definitely be narrowed down after reading this list. Here are 20 U.S cities that are the most dangerous for animals.

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Jacksonville, FL

Compared to some of the other big cities in Florida, Jacksonville isn’t particularly pet friendly. Pet owners moving to or visiting the area may find a lack of pet friendly options available and even the beaches in the area aren’t very welcoming for pets. Also, Florida has a high instance of heart worms which can pose a serious problem for animals.

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San Antonio, TX

Everything may be bigger in Texas, but that isn’t always a good thing. Over the last several years, there have been quite a few dog attacks in the city of San Antonio one of which even resulted in the death of an elderly woman.  Although dog attacks are obviously dangerous for humans, they can be dangerous to other animals as well. Not only are other dogs at risk of being attacked, but any other small animal could also fall victim to an overly aggressive dog.

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Louisville, KY

As a whole, Kentucky just isn’t a good place for animals. The state’s animal protection laws are very lax and laws even prohibit vets from reporting suspected dog fighting.  Just knowing that would make most animals lovers , and no matter what type of animal you own, you’ll probably want to avoid Louisville and the state of Kentucky as a whole.

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Sacramento, CA

Like San Antonio, Sacramento has a high rate of dog attacks.  There’s nothing worse than living in a city and having to be afraid every time a dog approaches you on the sidewalk. Dog attacks can cause fear in the community and cause certain apartments and businesses to reconsider being pet friendly. Nobody wants a liability on their hands, and aggressive dogs are certainly that.

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Jersey City, NJ

According to Wallet Hub’s 2014 findings, Jersey City is one of the worst cities in the country for having pets. Not only is there a lack of dog parks and other pet friendly amenities, but Jersey City has one of the lowest number of vets per capita. On top of that, put insurance premiums in the city are much higher than most other places in the country.  Because pets, like people can benefit from normal check-ins with the doctor and may have unexpected health issues, access to a good vet is important.

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Santa Ana, CA

Santa Ana may be a great place for humans, but if you own a pet you might want to consider crossing the city off of your list.  Although a lack of fun things for your dog to do isn’t in itself very dangerous, a lack of easy access to veterinary care can be a huge problem. Santa Ana is also an expensive place to have a pet which can lead to issues such as abandonment.

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Newark, NJ

Over the years, Newark has consistently been ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the country.  As you can imagine, a city that isn’t safe for humans probably isn’t too safe for animals either. Newark has one of the lowest number of pet friendly restaurants and dog parks, and also has one of the lowest number of vets per capita.

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Detroit, MI

Like Newark, Detroit is another city isn’t particularly safe all across the board. Detroit also has a pretty bad reputation when it comes to pets, and the city has had some safety issues when it comes to safe animal shelters and the selling of unhealthy pets. Earlier this summer, the city made headlines when a dog died while in custody of local Animal Control.

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Philadelphia, PA

Philadelphia may seem like a great place for a pet, but if you’re not very resourceful you could find yourself struggling to take proper care of your animal. Philadelphia has a very low number of vets per capita, and as with many other crowded cities, Philadelphia doesn’t have a lot of space for animals to be properly exercised.

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Los Angeles, CA

Los Angeles may be paradise for most people, but for animals it might not be the best place to be.  The city has a very high instance of dog attacks – especially cases of dogs attacking postal workers. Anytime there are a high number of a dog attacks, people automatically become fearful which can result in the safety of innocent dogs and other animals being compromised.

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New York, NY

The Big Apple really isn’t the best place to have a pet. Not only is the city expensive to live in, but vet costs are also higher than other places in the country. On top of that, the lack of space in the city presents a serious problem for animals of any kind. Dog owners especially may have a tough time finding places to walk and exercise their dogs.  Crowded city streets can also present unsafe opportunities for both pets and people.

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Nashville, TV

Nashville has some of the highest vet costs in the country.  This could present a very serious problem for animals in need of medical attention. Plus, the warm weather could present a dangerous climate for some pets whose breed may not be best suited for high temperatures.

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Houston, TX

The city of Houston is known for a lot of things, and unfortunately a high population of stray animals is one of them. While most stray animals don’t pose a direct threat to humans or other animals, the life of a stray animal is, in itself a very dangerous existence.  With no regular meals, shelter, or supervision, it can be easy for a stray animal to wind up in danger.

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Boston, MA

Boston is one of the most historic places in the United States, but unfortunately the city also has a reputation for not being very pet friendly.  Not only does the city have a lack of pet friendly options for people who enjoy bringing their pets places, but vet costs in the city can be pricey, and the harsh winters can pose a problem for pets.  Dogs especially can receive serious paw injuries during winter month in places where rock salt is used heavily.

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Seattle, WA

Lots of people in Seattle don’t even bother to have pets because the poor weather makes taking several trips outside on a daily basis kind of annoying. That coupled with the high veterinary costs can definitely post a problem for pets. As you can imagine, lack of exercise and poor medical care can lead to serious problems.

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Scottsdale, AZ

Aside from the fact that Scottsdale is extremely hot, the city has some of the highest pet insurance premiums in the country. While some pet owners may not see insurance as useful or necessary, in the event of an unlikely emergency it can definitely come in handy. As with human medical care, pets who don’t have insurance are less likely to receive top of the line care which can prove to be detrimental to their health.

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Laredo, TX

Sure, Laredo, like other cities, has a lack of available vets and high-priced vet care, but like in other areas of Texas, it’s snakes that pose a real threat.  Snakes can be deadly to both humans and others animals. Pets who are left unattended could easily fall victim.

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Atlanta, GA

Atlanta probably isn’t the safest place for animals, but not for the reason you may think.  Atlanta has a bit of a rat problem thanks to a high number of abandoned buildings and homes.  While rats may not seem like a huge health problem, their droppings contain bacteria that can be harmful to other animals.

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Cleveland, OH

Cleveland, like many other Midwestern cities isn’t a great place for animals. Since pet ownership in the city isn’t particularly high, there is a lack of available pet services. While most large cities offer 24 hour vet care, Cleveland have just one 24 hour vet office. If you’ve ever had a sick animal in the middle of the night, you know just how important it is to have access to emergency services.

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Morristown, TN

Household animals may be okay in Morristown, but the city is home to small a zoo that has been cited for numerous animal welfare violations. Some of the issues have included animals being fed food covered in feces, animals housed in small spaces, and a lack of clean water.

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Written by Camille Moore

Camille has a master's degree from Saint Joseph University's Writing Studies program. Her writing has been published on several websites, and she enjoys writing articles and short stories in her spare time. You can follow Camille on Twitter @CamealAshley.