Secondary analysis of pre-existing data from two Colorado animal shelters was conducted to assess the impact
of shelter cats’ coat color on time required for adoption. One shelter included adult cats and kittens, the second shelter
included kittens only. Results indicated that black cats, regardless of age or sex, require the longest time to adopt. They
are followed by primarily black cats with other colors. Other color cats take less time to adopt than either black cats or
primary black cats with other colors. This additional time in shelters negatively impacts the health and therefore, the
welfare, of black shelter cats. Factual, rather than anecdotal knowledge about black cat adoption rates may allow shelters
to direct additional resources into strategies designed to increase black cat adoption rates and decrease time black cats
spend in shelters.
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