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A study was designed to develop a need index for pet dogs in order to assess their welfare using a score chart prepared by surveying the dog owners of Kerala state, India. The scores obtained are given in three categories as low (less than 10), optimum (11 to 15) and high (16 to 20) scores. About 8.2, 76.2 and 15.6 per cent of the dog owners obtained low, optimum and high scores respectively in fulfilling the needs of their dogs. In general, majority of the dog owners fulfilled most of the needs of their dogs.