About us

The Society for Companion Animal Studies (SCAS) was established in 1979 to promote the study of human-companion animal interactions and raise awareness of the importance of pets in society.

Over the past forty years SCAS has established itself as a source of evidence on best practices in human-animal interactions.

Our Mission

We consistently strive to enhance the well-being of people and animals by promoting and supporting their interactions to our members, practitioners in the field, healthcare professionals, the animal welfare sector and anyone interested in companion animals and the many ways they enhance health and well-being.

Mission Statement: To promote One Health One Welfare, recognising the connections between animal welfare, human wellbeing and the shared environment.


  • Promote the health and wellbeing benefits of human-animal interactions.
  • To be the definitive source of evidence-based knowledge of human-animal interactions.
  • Encourage best practice protocols in animal-assisted interventions.
  • Contribute to the development of policies and practices that protect and support the human-companion animal bond.
  • Provide resources and training to help ensure interactions between people and companion animals are mutually beneficial.

A bit of History

It was in Dundee in 1979 that a small group of psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers and veterinary surgeons founded SCAS, by setting up the Society to promote awareness and understanding of human-companion animal relationships.

SCAS has always recognised the importance of working with other organisations that share similar aims, and in 1990 was a founder member of the International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organisations (IAHAIO).

SCAS is a member of the Animal Behaviour and Training Council (ABTC), the Animal Welfare Education Alliance (AWEA), the  International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organisations (IAHAIO) and the Green Care Coalition. It has also been a member of Pet PartnersInternational Society for Anthrozoology (ISAZ), Latham Foundation, the Pet Health Council and the World Animal Protection (WSPA). Over the past three decades, we have regularly been represented on the Pet Advisory Committee, Pathway, and the British Small Animal Veterinary Association (BSAVA).

For a number of years SCAS worked in partnership with The Blue Cross animal welfare charity.That relationship was advantageous to the Charity in so far as it enabled SCAS to use have access to resources which might otherwise not have been available to it as a Charity; the relationship which existed with The Blue Cross was effectively brought to a close as at the 31 December 2012.

As from 1st January 2013 SCAS has been restructuring in order to carry on the great work that it has pioneered and supported.  Most recently, SCAS has appointed a number of new Board members and is reviewing its portfolio of activities to ensure that it can continue to build on its many achievements.

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