Quelle est la ville la plus accueillante pour nos chiens ?

What is the friendliest city for our dogs?

The magazine 30 Millions d'Amis has just revealed a list of winners in a survey published in its May issue, available on newsstands since April 21.
41 towns with more than 100,000 inhabitants were combed through. The victory is indisputable. The city of Toulon, with a score of 17.92/20, is at the top of the list of cities where it is good to live with your dog ahead of Perpignan (17.88/20) and Montpellier (17.51), Bordeaux and Nice are well placed, Lille and Marseille are at the bottom of the classification. Hip hip hip for Grenoble which is in 5th place!

What are the criteria that enter into the evaluation grid of the magazine 30 Millions d'amis:

Accessibility: public spaces, gardens and green spaces, but also public transport. The number of spaces provided to allow dogs to be free and rub shoulders with their congeners (caniparcs) is also taken into account.
The cleanliness : in particular the provision of waste bag distributors, tools dedicated to cleaning roads and sidewalks… With, this year, the budget dedicated to the supply of this equipment.
Raising awareness and communicating with dog owners to inform them of the tools available to them. But also repression, which is often associated with awareness.
Infrastructure (commercial) . Their number and diversity, relative to the number of inhabitants, are an indicator of the welcome reserved by the city for dog owners.
The dog population (I-cad figures): the number of dogs, relative to the total population, is an indicator of the facilities provided to their owners.
Municipal policy: an elected delegate for the animal cause, days dedicated to dogs or pets, budgets allocated to animal protection associations… are all indicators of the commitment of elected officials to open the city to dogs.

Toulon, Capital of dogs!!

A first place deserved by the Cité du Port Levant which leads a policy of welcoming dogs in the broad sense by opening up its public spaces and a reasoned approach to the sharing of green spaces since a quarter of them have a caniparc where dogs can be let loose. All public transport in the city is accessible to dogs on a leash, even the boats and the cable car that leads to Mont Faron, the favorite place for walks in Toulon. With a dense network of canisites, more than 1.3 million waste bags distributed for a budget of 14,000 euros, the city has made cleanliness a priority (even if this remains to be improved).

Finally, Hubert Falco, the senator-mayor of the city, makes the animal, and in particular the dog, a full citizen since an elected official is specifically in charge of the animal in the city . Among other things, the municipality distributes significant aid to animals left behind. In this, it even makes the difference with all the others.

Finally, a canine brigade ensures compliance with the rules and prevents animal abuse.

The 30 Million Friends Foundation's Ribbon of Honor was presented to Hubert Falco by Reha Hutin, the Foundation's president. This distinction rewards the port city for its actions towards animals, its reception of dogs, but also the help it provides to shelters on its territory and its commitment to preserving biodiversity, in particular by imposing ecological expertise before any rehabilitation of buildings to preserve swift nests, and by creating an LPO (League for the Protection of Birds) refuge in the heart of the Pré Sandin park.

Paris still a bad student:

Paris, for example, allows access to dogs in the metro, but not yet in the buses. In addition, the capital has no green space, or very little, open to dogs, except for two or three caniparks. Not to mention the absence of plastic bag dispensers to allow owners to pick up their animal's droppings. But several municipalities are in this case and fully assume this choice, arguing that it is not up to the city to pay, but to the dog owners themselves.

Despite everything, Paris is less poorly rated than last year, because the city has opened part of the transport to dogs, but unfortunately has not communicated on this initiative. It's a shame... Toulouse also (2nd last year) lacked communication. The city has created dog training courses, but without putting this project forward, deplores Katia Renard.

Conversely, we find Boulogne-Billancourt, yet bordering Paris, very well ranked, in 8th place in the list. Boulogne-Billancourt already has Bois, which is a strong point. Owners can release their dog there without worry. In addition to that, there are more than 167 plastic bag distributors. The municipality allocates a budget of €23,000 for the bags, the maintenance of the caniparcs, and the communication campaigns on this subject.

Cleanliness, a crucial issue

In the lead, Toulon dedicates a large budget to cleanliness and the replenishment of all its equipment, ”says Katia Renard, but we especially welcomed the access to cleanliness in Perpignan. The city allocates a budget of €700,000 to cleanliness for dogs, out of an overall envelope of €8 million, justifies the editor-in-chief of the magazine 30 Millions d'amis.

A repression component is also taken into account, to compel owners to use the equipment made available to them. Finally, an elected official has been a delegate for the animal cause since the start of Hubert Falco's mandate. The stray cat shelter is housed on municipal land, for example, at the expense of the municipality. An envelope of more than €40,000 is even dedicated to animal associations.

Toulon: the reward of a long upstream work

Christine Pagani Bezy, delegate for animal welfare and sustainable development at the town hall of Toulon (Var) responded to leparisen.fr.

How do you perceive this award from the 30 Million Friends Foundation?
Christine Pagani Bezy. Coming to the top of the list and receiving this Ribbon of Honor is a real source of pride for the entire municipality, but also a real encouragement. It comes to crown many years of work. Because these are not initiatives taken since 2016, but a long upstream work that began with the election of Hubert Falco as mayor of Toulon in 2001. He then appointed me deputy delegation of animal welfare and sustainable development. Upon his arrival, Hubert Falco had a clear speech: the animal, and in particular the dog, is important for all the qualities it represents. So, himself a dog owner, he was very sensitive to this cause. Its primary goal was to create a balance between animal owners and the rest of the Toulon people.

What are your main missions?

I endeavored to take the problem in the direction of the integration of the animal in the city. There are more than 27,000 declared dogs in Toulon ( for more than 165,000 inhabitants, editor's note ). We have therefore set up, over the years, structures for welcoming dogs without harming the daily lives of other Toulonnais. About twenty dog ​​parks are present in the city, a specific access to the sea has been set up for them on Tabarly cove. Regarding cleanliness, the distribution of bags works really well. Many caniparcs have also been set up. More broadly, we also collaborate a lot with the League for the Protection of Birds (LPO), because Toulon has the advantage of being between the mountains and the sea, which promotes the diversity of fauna. Thanks to this work on biodiversity, we allow the reintroduction of black swifts and their preservation, for example.

What are your future plans?
We are now working on the condition of dogs in Toulon but also much more. At beehive sites, for example, especially in towns. To come back to the canine cause, we started to work on ideas for events, a day devoted to pets perhaps... Or even offering cats in retirement homes, a kind of "purr therapy which has already proven itself elsewhere. We are also thinking about intervening in schools to raise children's awareness of dogs. We are also thinking with dog handlers to have dog training courses. Projects will also continue on the establishment of wildlife, terrestrial and underwater.

We can all move or ensure that the animal cause evolves each in our territories. The positive image that we convey will make it possible to obtain municipal aid and allow dog owners to live better in the city with canipars, facilities set up to help cohabitation with our animals. Cleanliness and respect for public spaces are therefore essential so that we can all live well together.

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