Assessment tools
These tools must not be used on their own to make final decisions, but need to be used in conjunction with other dataand observations. Assessment tools employed by the Ontario SPCA were originally developed by the ASPCA as part of the Meet Your Match (MYM) system.
MYM is performed to increase adoptions, decrease returns and increase your chances of making successful, compatible adoption matches


  • ASPCA SAFER® Aggression Assessment is a predictive, consistent method for evaluating the probability of future canine aggression in dogs, six months of age and older
  • The assessment uses 6 or 7 individual tests – look, sensitivity, tag, squeeze, toy behaviour, and dog-to-dog behaviour. The food behviour test is not currently advised although it was one of the original tests
  • Usually takes no more than 10 minutes per dog to complete
  • It establishes a baseline to determine what, if any, behaviour modifications (b-mod) need to be performed
  • Find more information at the ASPCA SAFER website
    • Canine-ality

      • Performed in dogs six months of age and older
      • Increase chances of a successful adoption match with greater likelihood of accepting the dog into the new home
      • It helps the adopter find the dog best suited to their needs and wants
      • The assessment evaluates each dog’s degree of playfulness, sociability with people, friendliness, ability to focus, motivators an “social manners” with people
      • All dogs are assigned one of three colours (green, orange, purple) and the evaluator then determines the dog’s main motivation – internal, external or social (attention from people)
      • Find more information at the ASPCA Canine -ality website


      • Performed on cats estimated or known to be nine months of age or older
      • Determines the cats enjoyment of being petted and held, playfulness, "talkativeness," activity level and interest in (and level of comfort with) new people and new things
      • Leads to increased adoptions, fewer returns (better matches), decreased length of stay, less euthanasia and happier adopters
      • All cats are assigned one of three colours (green, orange, purple) and the assessment determines the cats valiance level and sociability level
      • There is a new feline-ality assessment that can be performed on cats after 18 hours in the shelter. Find more information on this and the standard assessment at the ASPCA Feline-ality website