My project has evolved the original idea to create an easy-to-use device for novice dog trainers to help in odor work. Though I still believe in my idea, my passion for animal welfare led me on a slightly different path, one that is still very much centered around dogs. I find myself as a conservationist working with the Kenya Society for the Protection and Care of Animals (KSPCA), with a clear goal of optimizing animal welfare using data-driven insights.
My research began with a deep dive into the world of animal sterilization and how it can help with improving animal welfare. To begin, I tapped into the data-filled shelter manager system that KSPCA uses in recording and managing data in the shelter. I specialized in using data only from Nairobi County and within the past 4 months, encompassing all sterilized dogs, both inside and outside the shelter. My hypothesis was that sterilization can enhance the health and happiness of animals. We measured this through changes in their body condition, weight, health, and overall well-being.
Screenshot of the Shelter Manager System
The result of this project will paint a clearer picture of the role of technology in animal welfare and serve as solid evidence of sterilization as a compassionate solution for street dogs. By sharing this report, I plan to inspire more data-driven initiatives within conservation and shelters.