Dogs (Canis familiaris) were the first animal species to become domesticated, believed to have originated from human-friendly populations of grey wolves (Canis lupus) living on the outskirts of hunter-gather camps over 10,000 years ago. But how did these wild animals evolve into man’s best friend?Continue reading
Researchers from the Canine Behaviour & Research Department, Dogs Trust, UK, just published a study that reviews how we measure the human–dog bond. Questionnaires and interviews were conducted with dog guardians to investigate their views on how their dogs demonstrated a shared a bond. The findings provide a useful foundation upon which to build research tools that better reflect the reciprocal nature of the dog-human relationship.
Samet et al., 2022. Exploring and Developing the Questions Used to Measure the Human–Dog Bond: New and Existing Themes, Animals, 12(7), 805; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12070805
A team of researchers, led by Dr. Colleen Dell from the University of Saskatchewan, Canada, recently published their research demonstrating how therapy dogs can reduce pain and anxiety in patients.
‘Clinically significant changes in pain as well as significant changes in anxiety, depression and well-being were observed in the therapy dog intervention compared to control. The findings of this novel study contribute important knowledge towards the potential value of emergency department (ED) therapy dogs to affect patients’ experience of pain, and related measures of anxiety, depression and well-being’.
CALL FOR APPLICATIONS – HAI RESEARCH
The WALTHAM® Human–Animal Interaction (HAI) Research Programme is pleased to announce the availability of £340,000 (approximately 524,000 USD) in 2015 to fund high quality research into the impact of companion animals on human cognition or academic outcomes.
Although animals are often included in educational settings for a variety of purposes, there is little empirical research documenting the efficacy of such practices. In the absence of an assessment system for these activities there are significant gaps in our understanding of the potential impact of animals on measures of academic success. Fundamental research is required to provide an evidence base to inform practice and guide educators and administrators on when, and under what circumstances, animal presence or animal ownership may be pedagogically valuable.
Specific areas of research eligible for funding under this call include but are not limited to the following categories:
- Academic learning outcomes
- Aspects of cognition (executive function, memory, learning, categorization, language etc.)
- Stress/anxiety reduction
- Classroom behaviours impacting academic success
- Physical activity and cognition/learning
- Typical and/or special populations (e.g. ADHD, autism spectrum, etc.)
Letter of Intent: Prior to submitting a formal application, investigators are required to submit a Letter of Intent to Dr. Nancy Gee (nancy. email@example.com) by June 1, 2015.
Application: The application deadline is June 31, 2015.
Further details and the application can be downloaded from the WALTHAM
The Veteran’s Service Dog is an alert dog that is specially trained for veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This is a mental disorder that veterans may suffer as they are deployed to war zones.
The specially trained dogs help veterans to cope with stress caused by traumatic experiences in war zones. The dogs recognize the first symptoms of a nightmare and give a warning and also help to avoid stressful situations and are able to calm their “boss” and feel safe. This allows veterans with PTSD recover faster from their trauma and resume their normal lives.
For the pilot, the project team are looking for Veterans with PTSD who wish to qualify for a Veteran’s Service Dog to improve their general life welfare.
The following tasks can be a service dog to perform:
- Wake and / or create light during a reliving of a nightmare
- Accompany on the street
- View a room occupants
- Find the way home when disorientated
- Provide distraction from worrying and depression
- Help relax by his presence
- Anger and anxiety indicated by contact with nose, head on your lap or jump
- Move away from a situation where you feel unsafe
- Keep personal zone free by standing between you and other people
Other specific tasks can also be negotiated as part of the project.
Selection of participants will be undertaken by a psychologist and instructors collaborating on the pilot. Successful applicants will then be put on a waiting list.
The pilot will study fourteen veterans with PTSD – seven of which will work with a dog and seven will take part in the research without a dog for comparison.
The Veterans Dog project is a collaboration of Service Dogs Netherlands, The Veterans House, Royal PIT Pro Rege and Dr. A. Wiersema-Ouwehand. The partners are committed to promote the advantages of having a veteran dog with war veterans and raise awareness of the Veterans Dogs among a larger group of people in the Netherlands to raise funds for the training of the dogs.
For more information please visit the website http://www.hulphond.nl/pagina/
The Animals and Society Institute (ASI) and Wesleyan Animal Studies (WAS) invite applications for the second annual undergraduate prize competition for undergraduate students pursuing research in Human-Animal Studies.
ASI and WAS will award a prize to an outstanding, original theoretical or empirical scholarly work that advances the field of human-animal studies. Papers can come from any undergraduate discipline in the humanities, social sciences or natural sciences, and must be between 4,000-7,000 words long, including abstract and references. The winning paper will be published in Society & Animals, aninterdisciplinary journal that publishes articles describing and analyzing experiences of and with non-human animals. Topics can include human-animal interactions in various settings (animal cruelty, the therapeutic uses of animals), the applied uses of animals (research, education, medicine and agriculture), the use of animals in popular culture (e.g. dog-fighting, circus, animal companion, animal research), attitudes toward animals as affected by different socializing agencies and strategies, representations of animals in literature, the history of the domestication of animals, the politics of animal welfare, and the constitution of the animal rights movement.
Applicants must be currently enrolled on a full or part-time basis in an academic program at a college or university, or have graduated from a college or university within the 12 months of the application. Prior first place winners are ineligible, as are papers that have won prizes in other competitions. Students may submit only one paper per year for consideration. Submissions are encouraged from the social sciences, humanities, and natural sciences, and must deal explicitly with non-human animals and/or the human-animal relationship. Students are responsible for keeping prize coordinator updated with current contact information. If student cannot be contacted, the prize is forfeited.
- Cover sheet with the applicant’s name, mailing address to be used for future correspondence, telephone and fax numbers, e-mail address, present rank and institution name.
- Paper must be 4,000-7,000 words long, including a one paragraph abstract and references.
- The first page should include the title of the paper and the author’s name. The next manuscript page should include the title and a 200-word abstract.
- Papers should be submitted electronically along with a letter by the student’s faculty sponsor, on school letterhead, verifying their enrollment status as a full-time or part-time student, or a student enrolled the previous year (all in electronic format).
The selection committee includes members from a range of disciplines connected to Human-Animal Studies, including editors from Society & Animals. Entries will be rated according to criteria associated with the quality of conceptualization, significance of topic, clarity and aptness of the methods (when applicable), quality of writing, command of relevant work in the field, originality, and contribution to Human-Animal Studies.
- Winning paper will be published in an issue of Society & Animals
- Next two papers will get honorable mentions and have their abstracts published in Society & Animals
- All three winners will receive a book of their choice from ASI’s Human-Animal Studies book series published by Brill
- Winning papers will be announced on the ASI and WAS websites, and in e-newsletters and other publications. The Committee may decide that no entry meets qualifications as prize winner.
Submission Deadline: August 1, 2013
Applicants should email electronic copies of the paper and cover sheet to firstname.lastname@example.org by the deadline.
Great presentation at ISAZ 2012 by Diahann Gallard, who we welcomed as a student on our AAI residential course in 2012.