BARC – Behavior Assessment Reactivity Checklist

B.A.R.C. is an assessment tool designed to fairly evaluate a dog’s behaviors through a series of interactions.

Countless shelter dogs are killed each year because of faulty temperament tests.  These tests often falsely label dogs as aggressive or dangerous and destroy them because of the outcome of these “tests.”  These tests employ poking and prodding dogs with plastic hands, stressing dogs to failure and placing dogs into situations that cause them to fail.  

B.A.R.C. uses a simple checklist which allows a person to fairly interact with a dog in a normal manner and document the results.  These results clearly show a dogs strong and weak points and are easy to understand by anyone reviewing the checklist.  This checklist can become part of the dog’s file and may be shown to prospective adopters or rescues. 

Giving clear snapshots of a dog’s behaviors and reactions will increase the likelihood that the dog will end up in a suitable home.

B.A.R.C. contains tools to guide the evaluator to a clear interaction with the dog and gives him or her a better understanding of the dog’s core issues.  Unlike traditional temperament tests, B.A.R.C.  does not pass or fail a dog depending on their issue(s).  The scenarios contained in B.A.R.C. are real life and fair to the dog.

Please listen to Robert Cabral’s interview about his thoughts on shelter behavior and the current temperament tests and how they compare to BARC.

Every dog deserves a fair chance at a happy home and every home deserves a fair chance at a stable dog.  B.A.R.C. changes the scenario for shelter dogs and levels the playing field for everyone.  The B.A.R.C. Guide (click below to download) is made available free of charge to shelters and rescues through Bound Angels.  This guide clearly explains the process and its components in an easy to understand format.  The B.A.R.C. Checklist (click below to download) is a simple checklist that anyone can complete.  It is important that the person performing the checklist and evaluation has an opportunity to read and understand the guide before performing the assessment.

The two videos above give an overview to the BARC procedure. The video on the left is the complete walk through, the one on the right is an overview. Since each dog is unique, so each BARC will be unique. These videos are merely a demonstration of the procedure.

B.A.R.C. Testimonials:

Just had to share the success we are having with your BARC method over traditional evals. Staff are quickly becoming converts! I do have one dog in house that has my heart but we can’t get a rescue to help him. If you have time to do it, I would be able to send you some video of him for any tips you could offer. He appears to be a Dutch Shepherd and had been on the run for a while. Know you are busy, just thought I would ask…everyone is growing afraid of him and I can’t get a solid “read”. Thanks for ALL you do!

Mary Kirlin

Executive Director

Humane Society of Marathon County, Wausau, WI

I’m using the app for the iPhone and I really love it. It makes it all so easy.
We love your behavior assessment test. We always refused to use the “Safer Test” because we didn’t feel it was fair to the dogs. I’m certain that dogs know the difference between a plastic doll and a human being.
I’m so glad I found your app and the dogs are happy as well 🙂

Peter Masloch

K9 Kennel Enrichment Specialist
Allegany County Animal Shelter