Around 45 percent of Turks do not consider stray animals to be “dangerous”, while 34 percent disagree, according to a study by a department of the Ministry of the Interior.
The study, titled “Perceptions of Stray Animals and Public Safety,” was conducted in January by the Department of Internal Security Strategies in 12 provinces, including Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir, among 1,100 people.
More than 82 percent of survey participants said they love street animals, 9.2 percent said they dislike them, while 8.5 percent were undecided.
About 40 percent of respondents said they liked stray animals more than pets, while 27.5 percent disagreed.
According to the survey, more than 67 percent of people encounter stray animals on an almost daily basis, but only 13.6 percent said they had been attacked by these animals, while nearly 62 percent said they had never experienced such an incident.
Around 28 percent of the participants said they had witnessed an attack by stray animals.
Just 39 percent of people think stray animals should be placed in shelters, but more than 45 percent disagree, saying they should continue to live in their natural environment.
The poll also found that 41.5 percent of people don’t believe stray animals pose a safety threat, but 44.5 percent expressed concern about the presence of these animals when children are playing on the street.