Paul McGreevy

Paul McGreevy
University of New England (Australia) | UNE · School of Environmental and Rural Science

BVSc, PhD FRCVS FRSN

About

488
Publications
244,914
Reads
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11,449
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 1996 - March 2021
The University of Sydney
Position
  • Professor
January 1992 - December 1995
School of Veterinary Science
Position
  • University of Bristol

Publications

Publications (488)
Technical Report
Full-text available
When the British Horseracing Authority released its recent whip consultation report, it claimed to have consulted the science. But it insists whipping doesn’t hurt horses and fails to recommend that the racing industry changes its approach.
Article
Horse sale advertisements are expected to present horses at their best to entice buyers. In such adverts, the prevalence of severe bits, restrictive nosebands, spurs and whips merits scrutiny because such devices reflect need for strong physical cues and their prevalence may serve as an indicator of training approaches. To examine the occurrence of...
Article
Effective communication between driver and horse through the reins is essential in harness racing to promote safety and optimise performance. Yet, the magnitudes of rein tension applied to driven horses, particularly Standardbred trotters (ST) are currently poorly understood. This is surprising given the number of reports that speak of mouth lesion...
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Across the globe, the welfare of sport horses is of growing concern, prompting the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) to state that at all times the welfare of the horse must be paramount. Expressions of discomfort or pain are nevertheless frequently overlooked or misunderstood, and warrant the development of objective welfare assessment met...
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Background Older companion dogs naturally develop a dementia-like syndrome with biological, clinical and therapeutic similarities to Alzheimer disease (AD). Given there has been no new safe, clinically effective and widely accessible treatment for AD for almost 20 years, an all-new cell therapeutic approach was trialled in canine veterinary patient...
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A public forum can reveal a wide range of perspectives on the ethical treatment of animals. This article describes how a panel of experts navigated through a discussion on the many and varied challenges of attempting to manage invasive and native fauna in Australia. The panel acknowledged the variety of these fauna, their effects on others and the...
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Livestock production systems are associated with climate change, land degradation, and animal welfare concerns, while overconsumption of animal-sourced foods is a major driver of human disease. Thus, shifting towards plant-rich diets is expected to deliver benefits for human health, the environment, and animal welfare. Nevertheless, diets high in a...
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Livestock herding dogs contribute greatly to the rural economy of Australia. However, their selection currently lacks a cohesive or methodical approach. For example, there is no accessible tool for assessing Australian livestock herding dogs’ suitability for work. The purpose of the current study was to devise a herding dog assessment form, the Her...
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Undesirable behaviours (UBs) in dogs are common and important issues with serious potential welfare consequences for both the dogs and their owners. This study aimed to investigate the usage of drug therapy for UBs in dogs and assess demographic risk factors for drug-prescribed UBs within the dog population under primary-care veterinary care in the...
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Assumptions about dogs’ personality are influenced by their appearance, which may lead to differences in ownership styles and subsequent canine welfare. The influence of canine appearance on observers’ emotion attributions to dogs remains largely unexplored. This study investigated whether canine head shape is related to how both dog owners and non...
Article
Equestrian equipment is often used to maintain control of horses while riding, training or handling them and therefore to optimize human and horse safety. However, equipment that has been incorrectly selected or inappropriately used may result in horses exhibiting conflict-related behavior. Characterising associations between apparatus use and unwe...
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Ethically challenging situations (ECS) are common in veterinary settings and can lead to moral stress. However, there is no published information about how a global pandemic affects the frequency and types of ECS encountered by veterinary team members. An online mixed methods survey was developed to determine the frequency, stressfulness and types...
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The annual Melbourne Cup Thoroughbred horse race has iconic status among many Australians but sits in the context of increasing criticism of the welfare of Thoroughbred racing horses and the ethics of gambling. Despite heated debates and protests playing out in the public domain, there is scant empirical research to document Australian attitudes to...
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This article reports on the results of a survey of racehorse trainers (n = 112) outlining the reasons for tongue-tie (TT) and noseband (NB) use by Thoroughbred trainers (TBTs) (n = 72) and Standardbred trainers (SBTs) (n = 40). The study also investigated the reported effectiveness of TTs and possible complications arising from their use. Tongue-ti...
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There is increasing evidence that undesirable behaviours (UBs) in dogs can compromise the welfare of both canine companions and their carers. Veterinarians are regularly consulted about affected animals and may be asked to euthanase the more severely affected individuals. A recent study of veterinary records showed that UBs were the predominant cau...
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The study investigated equine responses to novelty and handling, aiming to reveal whether horse–human relationships reflect criteria of an attachment bond. Twelve adult Standardbreds were subjected to a fear-eliciting test (novel objects presented close to two humans) and a handling test (being led passing novel objects) to study attachment-related...
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Infra-red thermography (IRT) is increasingly being used to estimate physiological stress responses in animals via changes in eye surface temperature. The aim of this study was to determine whether eye temperature of harbour seals ( Phoca vitulina ) changes in response to routine handling and the potentially painful procedure of flipper-tagging, and...
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Abattoirs are faced with the challenge of moving livestock efficiently through the plant, while also engaging in handling practices that assure good animal welfare. Achieving optimal outcomes for both of these goals can bring them into conflict. An additional source of conflict can arise from the design of the abattoir. These problems are compounde...
Article
The depletion in genetic diversity of closed-pedigree dog breeds can be a contentious topic and can lead to calls for open-registry. However, strong evidence in support of proposed open-registry solutions is lacking, with the reproductive isolation of these breeds unlikely to be the sole cause of elevated inbreeding levels. Human-induced limitation...
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Current evidence of how human sex-related differences in riders and handlers may influence horse behaviour is limited. The Equine Behaviour Assessment and Research Questionnaire (E-BARQ) was used to collect demographic data on riders and handlers (n = 1420) and behavioural data on their horses. It includes demographic items about the sex of the res...
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Infrared thermography (IRT) can be used to identify stressors associated with greyhound racing procedures. However, factors unrelated to stress may influence measurements. Validation of an eye side (right or left) and a reference point on the eye is required if IRT is to be standardised for industry use. Infrared images of greyhound heads (n = 465)...
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It is logical to assume that horses with multiple riders encounter variation in application of training cues. When training cues are inconsistent, we expect to see a decrease in trained responses or an increase in conflict behaviours. This study investigated the relationship between the number of people that regularly ride or handle a horse and the...
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An evidence-based understanding of dangerous or unwelcome behaviour in horses would greatly benefit both horses and humans who interact with them. Using owner-reported data from the Equine Behaviour Assessment and Research Questionnaire (E-BARQ), the current study investigated in-hand behaviours associated with dangerous or unwelcome ridden behavio...
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The broad traits of boldness and independence in domestic horses can affect their usefulness and, indirectly, their welfare. The objective of the current study was to explore associations between attributes that reflect equine boldness and independence with both the age of horses and the age at which they were started under saddle, as well as other...
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It is estimated that around 40% of Australian households currently own dogs that have been acquired from a variety of sources, including purpose-bred litters. However, little is known about how litters are being planned, whelped, and raised and less still on what motivates breeders to adopt their current practices. The current study used on online...
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The willingness of racing greyhounds in Australia to chase a mechanical lure on racetracks will affect the longevity of its racing career. Racing greyhounds that fail to chase may be retired from racing at an early age and their fate becomes uncertain and may in some cases be euthanasia. At the end of races, greyhounds are diverted into a catching...
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"Social license to operate" (SLO) refers to the implicit process by which a community gives an industry approval to conduct its current business activities. It has become an important focus for many natural resource management fields (especially mining), but there is less awareness of its role in animal use industries. This article describes how an...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Pressure is increasing on the global horse-racing industry to reconsider the use of whips in the sport. Our research shows horses' skin is very similar to humans' in both thickness and the arrangement of nerve endings. This adds to existing evidence that whipping is ineffective and unethical. Here we outline ten reasons why it's time to drop the cr...
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The current project aims to build on knowledge of the nociceptive capability of equine skin to detect superficial acute pain, particularly in comparison to human skin. Post-mortem samples of gluteal skin were taken from men (n = 5) and women (n = 5), thoroughbreds and thoroughbred types (mares, n = 11; geldings, n = 9). Only sections that contained...
Technical Report
Full-text available
We found whips make no difference to horse steering, jockey safety, or even a horse’s speed. Our study offers scientific findings that support Racing Victoria’s recently announced plan to gradually phase out whip use until whips are only being used when absolutely necessary.
Article
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The Equine Behaviour Assessment and Research Questionnaire (E-BARQ) was developed to obtain quantitative data on the domestic equine triad: training, management and behaviour. It can be taken repeatedly, thus collecting longitudinal data to enable evaluation of how changes in a horse's training and management are reflected in that horse's behaviour...
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The idea that whip use is critical to thoroughbred racing integrity is culturally entrenched but lacks empirical support. To test the longstanding beliefs that whip use aids steering, reduces interference, increases safety and improves finishing times, we conducted a mixed-method analysis of 126 race reports produced by official stewards of the Bri...
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The Equine Behaviour Assessment and Research Questionnaire (E-BARQ) is a questionnaire instrument developed to obtain quantitative data on the domestic equine triad of training, management, and behaviour of horses. The E-BARQ was developed to identify how changes in training and management impact behaviour over time, to define normal behaviour in h...
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Throughout its 25-year history, the Five Domains Model for animal welfare assessment has been regularly updated to include at each stage the latest authenticated developments in animal welfare science thinking. The domains of the most up-to-date Model described here are: 1 Nutrition, 2 Physical Environment, 3 Health, 4 Behavioural Interactions and...
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Owner-reported behavioural observations form an essential part of the veterinarians' diagnosis and treatment plan. The way we train and manage horses affects their behaviour and, in turn, their health and welfare. Current horse training and management practices are largely driven by traditional techniques and longstanding methodologies. These appro...
Article
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Restrictive nosebands are used in equestrian sports to hold the bit in place and reduce mouth-opening, a response that can attract penalties in some sports and is thought to reduce the rider's control of the horse. Sustained pressure from such tightly fitted (restrictive) nosebands denies normal behaviour and thus, causes frustration and distress t...
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Over the last decade, equitation scientists have increasingly relied on online survey tools to gather information on horse training, management, behaviour and other equine-related subjects. With a detailed knowledge of their animals, horse owners and riders are ideally placed to contribute to research but are sometimes reluctant to engage with and...
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All of the veterinary schools in Australia and New Zealand worked together to develop the online One Welfare learning and teaching portal (OWP) for sharing teaching resources to assist veterinary graduates to become leaders in animal welfare and ethics (AWE). The materials in the portal are organised around eight key themes including two overarchin...
Technical Report
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This short report summarises the culture clash between horses and humans.
Article
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Australia has no national roadkill monitoring scheme. To address this gap in knowledge, a roadkill reporting application (app) was developed to allow members of the public to join professional researchers in gathering Australian data. The app is used to photograph roadkill and simultaneously records the GPS location, time and date. These data are u...
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Overweight and obesity (O&O) is a risk factor for several health conditions and can result in a shorter lifespan for cats. The objectives of this study were to investigate (a) cat owners’ attitudes towards feline O&O and their associations with O&O in their cats; and (b) the risk factors for feline O&O and underweight, particularly those involving...
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Simple Summary: Horses and donkeys are often lumped together but as separate species; they differ from each other in many ways. We examined the head characteristics of deceased horses and donkeys and measured various structures of both the skull and the brain. We calculated various ratios of skull measurements from horses and donkeys to be able to...
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The racing greyhound industry in Australia has come under scrutiny in recent years due to animal welfare concerns, including wastage where physically sound greyhounds fail to enter or are removed from the racing industry because of poor performance. The reasons why some greyhounds perform poorly in racing are not well understood, but may include in...
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Horses and donkeys belong to the genus Equus, but important differences exist between the species, many of which affect their management and welfare. This study compared skull morphology between horses and donkeys. Horse (n = 14) and donkey (n = 16) heads were obtained post-mortem, sectioned sagittally close to the midline, and photographed for sub...
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The welfare of aquatic animals is receiving increasing attention around the world, and this should be reflected in the veterinary curricular. Veterinary students in Australia and New Zealand ranked the importance of five pre-selected topics on aquatic animal welfare and ethical issues for newly qualified veterinarians in an online survey. They rank...
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This article reports on the results of a survey designed to explore the types of nosebands that owners, riders and trainers use in training and competition, their reasons for using nosebands, the design preferences in different disciplines and approaches to noseband tightness and monitoring, as well as the incidence of negative impacts related to n...
Technical Report
Full-text available
A recent survey of more than 1,500 Australians found 95% were concerned about the welfare of farm animals and 91% wanted to see some reform to animal welfare regulations. But this concern doesn't always mean consumers will make the right choices for animal welfare. Unfortunately the level of concern for animal welfare has not translated into a simi...
Technical Report
Full-text available
As coronavirus forces us to isolate, some news outlets are suggesting now is the ideal time to bring a dog into your life. But the current changes have some far-reaching implications for dogs of all ages, and especially for puppies. Staying home and not socialising your dogs, most notably puppies, risks them becoming afraid of unfamiliar people and...
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Objectives Dog ownership has been associated with improved cardiometabolic risk factors, including physical activity. Most of the evidence originates from cross-sectional studies or populations with established disease. This study investigated changes in physical activity and other cardiometabolic risk factors following dog acquisition in a sample...
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Temperature is used as an indicator of animals' response to external stimuli and thus it could potentially be used as an indicator or poor animal welfare and meat quality. Remote monitoring of temperature can be achieved using infrared thermography (IRT) at the farm of origin before animals are sent to slaughter. Relationships between temperatures...
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Horse trainers and riders may have preconceived ideas of horse temperament based solely on the sex of the horse. A study (n = 1233) of horse enthusiasts (75% of whom had more than 8 years of riding experience) revealed that riders prefer geldings over mares and stallions. While these data may reflect different sex preferences in horses used for spo...
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Livestock herding dogs are crucial contributors to Australian agriculture. However, there is a dearth of empirical studies of the behavioural interactions between dog and livestock during herding. A statistical approach that may reveal cause and effect in such interactions is lag sequential analysis. Using 48 video recordings of livestock herding d...
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Background The objectives of this study were to establish the prevalence, risk factors and comorbidities/sequelae for diabetes mellitus (DM) in Australian dogs presented to first-opinion veterinary practices. Methods Electronic patient records of dogs (n=134,329) attending 152 veterinary clinics during 2017 were sourced through VetCompass Australi...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Duke the dog's plane death shows how climate change complicates pet ownership
Technical Report
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A simple summary of the many puzzles domestic living creates for puppies
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To increase the public's awareness of and exposure to animals needing homes, PetRescue, Australia's largest online directory of animals in need of adoption, lists all currently available animals from rescue and welfare shelters nationwide. The current study examined the photographs in the PetRescue online profiles of the three most common breeds wi...
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Music therapy yields many positive health outcomes in humans, but the effects of music on the health and welfare of nonhuman animals vary greatly with the type of music played, the ethology of the species, and the personality and learning history of individual animals. One context in which music therapy may be used to enhance animal welfare is to a...
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There are longstanding disagreements between the rodeo industry stakeholders and animal welfare advocates about the wellbeing of the animals used in events. The current study aims to determine whether qualitative behavioural assessment (QBA) is effective in identifying the emotional state of calves in so-called calf-roping events. Still images of c...
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Public concern for farm animal welfare is growing. However, high welfare purchases require consumers to make sense of often confusing labels. This study aims to investigate consumers' preferences for higher welfare products with on-package animal welfare labels and to explore whether providing consumers with detailed information about the welfare c...