Shelter Health

Body Condition Scores at Intake

Body condition scoring helps ensure that everyone who examines animals uses the same criteria to determine physical condition, and assigns scores consistently. There are several different scales available for scoring body conditions that shelters may choose to use.

How to Assign a Body Condition Score

You determine an animal's body condition score by visually comparing the animal to pictures on a body condition chart. Each picture has a numerical score. For each animal, you choose the picture that matches the animal's condition most closely. The body condition score (BCS) associated with the picture is then the animal's current BCS. You should record this score in the animal's health record.

Feline and Canine Body Condition Scales

Tufts Animal Care and Condition Scales (TACC) (.pdf)
The Tufts scales were developed specifically for documenting animal neglect and cruelty. The body condition score in this scale uses a 1-5 scale where 1 is an ideal condition and 5 is an emaciated condition.

Purina Feline Body Condition Scale  |  Purina Canine Body Condition Scale 
The Purina scales were developed for owned dogs and cats. These scales use a 1-9 scale, where 1 is emaciated and 9 is grossly obese.

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