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Do you Believe in Dog? (2018). Powered by Blogger.

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It started when two canine scientists decide to become pen pals in an era of digital media...


13 September 2012

Zoos and an enlarged dachshund wrapped up in welfare

I can wait for you to talk about humping in working dogs later. I’m assuming humping didn’t come up at the AAWSome conference -- maybe something for the conference suggestion box?

I haven’t seen any humping recently, although LOADS of people are getting a taste of humping at Marc Bekoff’s Psychology Today post, Why Dogs Hump (324 Facebook “likes” as of today). Clearly this pales in comparison to the attention Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson are getting, but hey, it's a start.

This seems to be a welfare time of year. The Association of Zoos and Aquariums are finishing up their 2012 conference in Phoeniz. Jason Goldman, who attended the conference, just told us, via Twitter, about the many welfare conversations and assessments on the table. Topics from the conference:

Humans and their job as welfare providers 
Keepers 2016: Building Zoo Staff's Capacity to Recognize and Solve Welfare Concerns Before They Become Welfare Problems 
Deborah Fripp, Animal Welfare Specialist

Ethologically relevant questions for kept species
To Fly or Not to Fly, Is that Really the Question? Sara Hallager, Biologist, Smithsonian National Zoological Park

How can zoos better monitor animal welfare?

WelfareTrak: A Welfare Monitoring Tool that Combines the Art and Science of Animal Caretaking -- Jessica Whitham, Animal Welfare Biologist, Chicago Zoological Society - Brookfield Zoo (This seems like one of those tools where if I knew more about it, I'd be raving about it like EthoSearch)

And considering relationships and emotions of both zoo animals and keepers
The Potential for Improved Animal Welfare Through the Human-animal Relationship and Emotional Enrichment in the Zoological Context -- Diana Reiss, Professor, Dept of Psychology, Hunter College CUNY, Hunter College

So, welfare talks are on the ground at Zoos and Aquariums, but what about the companion dogs?

Dogs often seem to slip through the welfare cracks. Do you see that in working dogs? Does their status of “working” almost make it assumed that they have “good welfare.” They can handle "it" (whatever it may be); After all, they’re workers!

Companion dogs can be perceived similarly. They live in homes, have families, are loved, how might their welfare be challenged?

Here's the tail end of a challenge to a dog's welfare. I guess we could also ask, how is it adaptive for a dog to just keep -- on -- eating... but that's a post for another day!

Your turn about the conference!!!



© Julie Hecht 2012
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1 comment:

  1. I've had a few pet dogs in my cognitive bias study that have tested quite pessimistic. They live in homes with their family, get walked, fed twice a day on good food, and have been trained with positive reinforcement, yet they are pessimistic. Why? I have my suspicions, but still collecting data.


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