There’s no doubt that pet owners in Houston love their four-legged friends, and a new ranking of the most pet-friendly cities in America says just as much.
WalletHub compared the 100 largest U.S. cities in terms of pet budget, pet health and wellness, and outdoor pet-friendliness to determine the best and worst places for our furry friends. Houston ranks 35th best in the nation.
H-Town impresses as the 29th best city in pet budget, which takes into account the city's low costs for pet-care provider visits (No. 10), as well as the higher costs of dog insurance premiums (No. 37) and veterinary care (No. 50).
Houston slips a bit, to No. 44, in pet health and wellness, which the study determines by tallying up the number of veterinarians, animal trainers, caretakers, dog-friendly restaurants, and more per capita. The study also scores health and wellness in terms of home sizes, pet-friendliness in the rental market, and welcoming hotels.
Interestingly, while the city boasts a large share of parklands (No. 17), good walk score (No. 34), and high number of dog parks and dog shows per capita, Houston ranks low in the number of dog-friendly trails per capita (No. 78) and weather (No. 86), contributing to its No. 59 ranking in outdoor pet-friendliness.
Texas has no shortage of pet hot spots, according to WalletHub, with Austin ranking No. 4 overall, followed by San Antonio at No. 22, and Fort Worth at No. 25. At the top of the list is Scottsdale, Arizona. The least pet-friendly city, though, is Fresno, California.