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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...


10 August 2014

Canine Science Forum 2014 - we come full circle!

Aw - it's Us @ CSF2014! Thanks Tamás Faragó :)
Dear Julie,

while you've been off enjoying the fjords of Norway and I've been recovering from six legs of long haul flying with a three year old as hand luggage, I thought I'd put up a quick post to recap the wonderful week in Lincoln, UK that was the (Feline and) Canine Science Forum 2014.

Such a fun, stimulating, inspiring week comprising the Feline Science day (Monday), public lecture by James Serpell (rhymes with purple) on Monday evening, Canine Science Forum (Tue-Wed-Thu), including the wonderful gala dinner at Lincoln Castle on Wednesday night and finally, the Companion Animals: Human Health & Disease day (Friday).

If anyone out there happened to miss it, we live tweeted nearly all of the presentations so you can easily catch up on all the great thoughts via the magic of Storify here.

Feline Science Day:

Public lecture by James Serpell:

Canine Science Forum Day 1:

Canine Science Forum Day 2:

Which, of course, included us being real life #scientists (we don't make this stuff up!):

You talked about Project: Play with Your Dog and the role that citizen science can play in canine science.

Nancy Dreschel (now on Twitter at @ndreschel) presented the key findings from our collaborative meta-analysis looking at canine salivary cortisol.

And I explored if using group averages is really the best way to determine and analyse the stress and welfare experience of working dogs (and my points were relevant to all animals!).

Then we drank wine in at a castle. Which was a mighty fine way to end that day.

Canine Science Forum Day 3:

Companion  Animals: Human Health & Disease 2014

We heard the exciting news that the next Canine Science Forum is to be held in Padova, Italy in 2016.

We continued on in England after CSF, down to visit the Animal Welfare and Behaviour Group at Bristol University - it was lovely to share some of our experiences and ideas with this team and we look forward to keeping up with their great work in the future.

And while we took a nap to recover, Do You Believe in Dog? went and turned two years old on us! So here we are - at the end of the original two years that we agreed to do this for, back in that first email exchange not even week after we met

120 blog posts with over 170,000 views, 8,900 tweets and over 8,400 followers on Facebook

Julie - I don't know how I can ever thank you enough for agreeing to join me on this adventure. I am so proud of how Do You Believe in Dog? has helped bring canine science to everyone. I am equally humbled and thrilled by the community that has grown around our pen pal exchanges - along with the popular guest posts by Clare, Brad, HeatherChristy, Claudia and Lindsay - and feel excited for the future of canine science and its ongoing transfer to the general public. 

Above all Julie, I am so grateful for your beautiful friendship which was perhaps the most fun surprise of this two year journey we have shared. Behind the posts of DYBID? are many email exchanges, Skype calls and messages. Through this media we have developed an incredibly open and honest friendship that I will always cherish. I respect you, your scientific and science communication work enormously. I have learned much from you and look forward to what comes next - for both of us.

"What's that?" you ask?  You'll see!


Further reading:

Do You Believe in Dog? - all the posts from the last two years!

Hecht, J. and Cooper, C. B. (2014) Tribute to Tinbergen: Public Engagement in Ethology, Ethology, 120 (3) 207-214. DOI:

Hecht, J. (2014) Canine Science: a trend you can easily get behind. Dog Spies, Scientific American Blog Network.

Cobb, M. and Hecht, J. (2014) Do You Believe in Dog? An experiment in scientific communication. Canine Science 1 (1) 10-12 DOI:

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