Big Problem … No Data!

The problem of stray dogs in Jordan is getting out of control. Calls to confront the problem are getting louder by the day.  News reports and social media posts increasingly call for an end to the problem often with inhumane and violent means, including poisoning and shooting.

However, despite heightened attention, you will be challenged to find any data on stray dogs in Jordan! At the Al-Yarmouk, our goal is to fill a hole in the scientific literature to guide and help evaluate future efforts aimed at solving the problem.

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Population Surveillance

In this ongoing study, we are using direct observation of dog density through street counts to measure variation in stray dog populations over time in Irbid, Jordan. We designed a “representative route” to take into account representative proportion of residential, business and rural areas in and around the city. We rely on the methodology published by Hiby and Hiby (Reference).

Starting in November 2021, data points have been collected biweekly. The average number of dogs per kilometer in Irbid is:


Stray Dogs Density in Irbid over Time 

The average number of dogs per kilometer directly observed along the representative route over time.

Measuring Public Attitude Toward Dogs

Ultimately, the goal is to switch public attitude toward dogs from net negative to net positive. Let’s remember that dogs are an essential part of our ecosystem and we must learn how to coexist peacefully. Those familiar with the situation in Jordan know that negativity toward dogs is so strong, it is very challenging to initiate (let alone sustain) any related program. 

Al-Yarmouk will be conducting periodic surveys to measure public attitude toward stray dogs. We hope this survey will serve as the standard for measuring the effectiveness of future public awareness campaigns. Results could also be useful to determine where and how to deploy resources in order to generate maximum impact.

Toward a Resource-Efficient Strategy for Controlling Stray Dog Population in Jordan

The problem of stray dogs in Jordan is getting out of control. With limited resources and lack of any serious governmental solutions, a small number of civil society organizations and interested individuals are taking matters into their own hands. Under these circumstances, there is a clear benefit for a resource-efficient strategy that guides efforts and focuses resources in order to generate maximum impact.

Al-Yarmouk is collecting data and conducting a number of assessment surveys in order to develop an evidence-based strategy that will help address the problem of stray dogs in Jordan.

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