Science Models
Science Fair Projects

Published on Sep 05, 2023


The objective:

The purpose of my project is to determine whether or not pets will run away before earthquakes. If this is true, we will be able to predict when an earthquake is about to occur.


I tested my hypothesis by randomly picking thirty different dates, twenty random, and ten days that 4.1 magnitude earthquakes occurred in the San Francisco area. I then looked in the classified section of the San Francisco Chronicle for lost pet advertisements on the selected dates. Then I counted the ads, recorded the data, and graphed it.


Over all, the larger percentage of lost pet ads were on earthquake dates. I started by testing only ten earthquake dates, but the results were so close, it was extremely difficult to reach a conclusion. I decided to expand my testing to see if I could get some more definite results.

I picked 10 more earthquake dates between 1980 and 1989 with a magnitude of 4.1 or higher. My further investigation on the predictions of earthquakes by lost pet advertisements indicated that pets do sense earthquakes and then run away.


After completing my project, I found that my hypothesis was correct. My hypothesis stated that there will be more lost pet advertisements on an earthquake date than on random control dates.

I expected that there would be more pet advertisements on earthquake dates because I thought that pets would be more likely to run away prior to an earthquake. What I found after increasing my testing was that on average, the number of lost pet ads were higher than on the control dates.

This project is to find whether pets sense earthquakes and run away before they happen.

Science Fair Project done By Emily C. Small