You may or may not have heard of black dog syndrome.
We spoke to Izzy Tutcher, Fundraising manager at Leicester Animal Aid to discuss the issue. She mentioned how important it is to be able to create an immediate connection with a dog, as that first impression is so important. Most dogs will have markings that are either appealing to us, or help us to create feelings about their character. I for one can agree with this - Winston has ginger eyebrows that I feel give him tons of expression, but in reality, they have no bearing on his behaviour or personality.
Black dogs are definitely harder to rehome, along with brindle dogs. If you have multiple dogs who are all identical, it is harder to create that instant connection with them - Izzy Tutcher, Fundraising Manager, LAA
Another suggestion is that superstitions may have a part to play (more so with black cats) and their portrayal in television and film. Usually, the black dog is a character to be feared, and to run from, like in the Hounds of the Baskerville or more recently Harry Potter. These stereotypes have helped to enforce the negative image of the black dog. During some recently conducted studies, it was found that we generally perceive black dogs to be less able of companionship and more likely to be aggressive than lighter coloured dogs. 
To make issues worse, the longer a dog has been at a shelter, the more likely people are to have preconceived and unfounded notions regarding the dog's behaviour meaning that they are even less likely to be adopted.
A lot of people struggle photographing black dogs, it needn't be difficult. The easiest thing to do is look at how the light is falling on their face. if the main light source (eg window) is behind your dog, turn them to face the window or have them side on. Try not to have your hound facing the sun on a bright day, but if you can place them in the shade of a building, facing the light, that's a great way to photograph your black dog on a sunny day.
Adopting dogs that are in need of homes is a great thing to do, and we want to help. Sadly (as much as we'd like to!) we are unable to adopt them all, so we have found an alternative solution where hopefully, we can make a difference. Studies show that by using brightly coloured collars and bandanas, dogs of all fur colours are more likely to attract the attention of any potential adopters. Black dogs can potentially benefit the most as the colourful contrast helps them to stand out and provide that point of reference amongst the crowd. In addition, at some shelters (including Leicester Animal Aid) bandanas can be used with natural calming agents to help soothe anxious dogs who may find kennels to be a stressful environment. This in itself can help dogs become more adoptable as it helps them to relax, reduce anxiety and potentially bark less, which Lizzie says can be off-putting for potential adopters.
If you are a rescue centre that is interested in being part of our Collar donation programme, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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2.Lepper, Merry; Kass, Philip H.; Hart, Lynette A. (2002). "Prediction of Adoption Versus Euthanasia Among Dogs and Cats in a California Animal Shelter" (PDF). Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science. 5 (1): 29–42
3.What is Black Dog Syndrome? BBC Website: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-england-nottinghamshire-41686518/what-is-black-dog-syndrome
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