Ben, Max most common dog names in Prague

The city has some 83,000 registered dogs,with 20,000 born before 1999

Prague residents have almost 83,000 dogs in their homes, according to registration numbers for the first half of 2018 released by City Hall. This is an increase of 3,000 compared to the same time in the previous year. Prague has a population of 1.26 million people, so there is one dog for every 15.2 people.

The actual number of dogs may be higher, as the figures only reflect properly registered dogs.

People usually have only one dog. The most popular names include Ben and Max, but Rocky and Rex are also common.

The city has about 2,000 dogs named Ben. Generally, people prefer foreign names like Jessie, Bella or Maggie. Among popular Czech names are Bára, Sára and Míša. There are several hundred dogs named Rozárek.

About a quarter of the 83,000 dogs in Prague are mixed breeds or mutts. Yorkshire terriers, dachshunds and Labradors are also popular, with together account for about 17,000 pets.

The largest number of dogs, some 8,000, are owned by long-term inhabitants of Prague 4, where there are many parks and forests. This is followed by Prague 6 and Prague 10.

At the opposite end of the table is Prague's Nedvězí neighborhood at the city's southeastern edge, where about 40 dogs live. There are only roughly 300 people in this wooded area, and one out of seven has a dog. So the few people here actually own more dogs per capita than average.

Some dogs are leading longer lives. According to records, some 20,000 Prague dogs that were still registered in 2017 were born before 1999.

The number of registered dogs has varied a lot. It was as high as 100,544 in 2016, having risen steadily since 2008. It fell in 2017, though, to 81,440. The reason for the drop is not clear.

Dog owners are required to register their furry companion at the local administrative office and also to notify City Hall. Dogs must also have identification chips or tattoos.

Last year, dog owners in Prague paid Kč 42,830,730 in registration fees. Seventy-five percent of this amount goes to the budget of the districts that collect these fees. Districts use this money, for example, to clean dog waste and provide bags for waste. Paper of plactic bags can be found on dispensers in parks and other places where people walk dogs. Not cleaning up after dogs can result in a fine.

The registration fee for one dog in a flat is Kč 1,500 for the first and Kč 2,250 for additional ones. The annual fee for dogs in a family home in Prague 1 to Prague 15 and Prague 17 is Kč 600 for one dog and Kč 900 for each additional dog. In other parts of the city, the fee for a dog at a family house is set at Kč 300 for the first dog and Kč 600 for each additional dog.

Prague has been trying to unify the rules for dogs across the city, regarding where they can go without a leash and other details, but little headway has been made. Each district currently sets its own rules.

The situation in Prague's shelters is getting better as more than two-thirds of lost dogs have been returned to owners because of ID chips.

Number of dogs in Prague:

2008: 82,230
2009: 83,270
2010: 88,303
2011: 91,029
2012: 93,133
2013: 94,651
2014: 96,512
2015: 98,654
2016: 100,544
2017: 81,440

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