Most Idahoans would believe that the Gem State is one of the country's most pet-friendly states. It's not unusual to see dogs everywhere around our area. Some folks take their dogs to work, drive errands, and even bring their dogs to go grocery shopping. We love our pets in Idaho. 

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However, a new national ranking of pet-friendly states has Idaho ranked near the bottom of friendly pet states. The Gem State is ranked four spots from being the least friendly pet state in the country. Only Connecticut, Montana, and New Mexico ranked worse than Idaho. 

Safewise comprised the rankings, and you can read their entire report here. The group's criteria used to rank the state consisted of two issues. How easy it is for pet owners to find pet-friendly places to live. (How often do we see pet welcome signs at rental properties?)  

The other part of the rankings was which states have laws protecting pets, showing compassion, and protecting them from animal abuse. Animal activists have tried for years to lobby the legislature and the governor to strengthen animal cruelty laws in Idaho. The challenge to their passage has been a substantial segment of influence from the agricultural lobby that views pets as property.  

Here is a more in-depth breakdown of how the rankings were determined:

  • Percentage of pet-friendly apartments (30%)
  • Pet population (20%)
  • Pets-left-in-car laws (10%)3
  • Veterinary reporting requirement law (10%)4
  • Tether law (10%)5
  • Anti-cruelty and sexual assault laws (15%)6,7
  • Animal fighting paraphernalia law (5%)8

The top five pet-friendly states were Indiana, Tennessee, North Carolina, Nevada, and Vermont.

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