Article

The influence of auditory stimulation on the behavior of dogs housed in a rescue shelter

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Abstract

This study explored the influence of five types of auditory stimulation (human conversation, classical music, heavy metal music, pop music, and a control) on the behaviour of 50 dogs housed in a rescue shelter. The dogs were exposed to each type of auditory stimulation for 4 h, with an intervening period of one day between conditions. The dogs' position in their kennels (front, back), their activity (moving, standing, sitting, resting, sleeping), and their vocalisation (barking, quiet, other) were recorded over 4 h at 10 min intervals during each condition of auditory stimulation. The dogs' activity and vocalisation were significantly related to auditory stimulation. Dogs spent more time resting and less time standing when classical music was played than when any of the other stimuli were played. Exposure to heavy metal music encouraged dogs to spend significantly more of their time barking than did other types of auditory stimulation. Classical music resulted in dogs spending significantly more of their time quiet than did other types of auditory stimulation. It is suggested that the welfare of sheltered dogs may be enhanced through exposure to appropriate forms of auditory stimulation. Classical music appears particularly beneficial, resulting in activities suggestive of relaxation and behaviours that are considered desirable by potential buyers. This form of music may also appeal to visitors, resulting in enhanced perceptions of the rescue shelter's environment and an increased desire to adopt a dog from such a source.

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... Auditory stimulation can be a useful environmental enrichment for reducing these activity levels in kennelled dogs (e.g. Wells et al., 2002;Kogan et al., 2012), although its value depends on the type of sound. Wells et al. (2002) found that dogs housed in a rescue shelter spent significantly more time being quiet when they were exposed to classical music than when they were exposed to human conversation, heavy metal music, pop music, or no music. ...
... Wells et al., 2002;Kogan et al., 2012), although its value depends on the type of sound. Wells et al. (2002) found that dogs housed in a rescue shelter spent significantly more time being quiet when they were exposed to classical music than when they were exposed to human conversation, heavy metal music, pop music, or no music. Kogan et al. (2012) also reported that classical music causes kennelled dogs to spend more time sleeping and less time vocalizing than when they are exposed to other types of music (i.e. ...
... Only the percentage of time spent in lateral recumbency during heartbeat exposure increased with repetition. The utility of classical music has also been reported in dogs (e.g., Wells et al., 2002;Kogan et al., 2012;Bowman et al., 2015), but the exposure periods used were longer (from 45 to 390 min) than our tests (10 min). It is obvious that classical music is a particularly efficient tool for enriching the environments of animals, although there are differences in efficacy among music types and exposure times. ...
Article
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Ten healthy pet dogs with an average maximum resting heart rate of 92 bpm that had never been used in studies of auditory stimulation were exposed randomly to one of three sound conditions on each of three occasions within a 5-day period. Posture and behaviour were recorded continuously by video for a total of 20 min over three phases: 5 min before sound exposure, 10 min during sound exposure, and 5 min after sound exposure. Each dog wore a Polar HR monitor throughout testing, and heart rate was recorded by using R–R interval data. Maximum heart rate was significantly greater during heartbeat sound exposure than afterwards, and average heart rate with both heartbeat sound and classical sound showed decrease tendencies.The time spent in dynamic (e.g. movement-related) postures was significantly higher before treatment than during or after under all three conditions. These data suggest that auditory stimuli in dogs may affect physiological responses without necessarily affecting behaviour, and specifically that heart rate may be elevated by auditory exposure to a faster heartbeat.
... Theoretically, this has the potential to facilitate the provision of larger, relatively free-range enclosures. In addition, music in animal shelters and veterinary hospitals may have flow-on benefits to staff and visitors [18], and may improve adoption rates [13,17]. Hence, in addition to improving the immediate and short-term physiological and mental health of dogs, music therapy may improve long-term welfare, potentially countering the effects of overcrowding and protracted stays in shelters. ...
... While the addition of classical music to kennel and veterinary hospital environments seems to yield positive benefits overall, several considerations arise when using auditory enrichment as a welfare measure. Four of the studies compared the effects of various broad categories of music including Heavy Metal [13,14], Pop [13,15,17] and Soft Rock, Motown and Reggae [17]. Rock and heavy metal music were found to induce undesirable behavioral and physiological changes in dogs, such as increased barking/vocalizing and standing [13,14,17]. ...
... While the addition of classical music to kennel and veterinary hospital environments seems to yield positive benefits overall, several considerations arise when using auditory enrichment as a welfare measure. Four of the studies compared the effects of various broad categories of music including Heavy Metal [13,14], Pop [13,15,17] and Soft Rock, Motown and Reggae [17]. Rock and heavy metal music were found to induce undesirable behavioral and physiological changes in dogs, such as increased barking/vocalizing and standing [13,14,17]. ...
Article
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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 alleviate stress in domestic environments. Here, we review studies of the effects of music exposure on dogs as a case study for the implementation of music therapy in veterinary medicine. Nine reports of experimental testing for the therapeutic effects of music on dogs were found, with most of these studies focusing on changes in behavior. Overall, exposure to classical music appears to have a calming influence on dogs in stressful environments, with no additional benefit observed from any music purposely designed for dogs (specifically "Through a dog's ear"). Given the cost effectiveness and ease of implementation, music therapy holds promise in veterinary medicine and animal welfare. However, to address precise research questions, further studies must use clearly defined characteristics of stimulus music in the experimental design, and consider the variability of each individual animal's physical characteristics and past experience in the selection of candidates.
... Nevertheless, so far only one study investigated the effects of aromatherapy in shelter dogs. Graham et al. (2005a) analyzed the behavior of 55 shelter dogs during exposure to 4 essential oils, namely chamomile, lavender, peppermint and rosemary. According to previous results with studies on humans (Motomura et al., 2001;Amsterdam, 2012) chamomile and, to a greater extent, lavender resulted in dogs spending more time performing behaviors suggestive of relaxation. ...
... Sensory stimulation has been used to encourage these types of behavior. A decrease in barking behavior has been reported in studies on all types of sensory stimuli (Bowman et al., 2015;Graham et al., 2005a;Graham et al., 2005b;Tod et al., 2005). Alertness in the form of increased sniffing behavior has been reported by Tod et al. (2005) in their study on the effects of pheromones. ...
... It is plausible that experiencing the shelter environment may induce behavioral changes that persist even after adoption in the form of undesirable behaviors. The efficacy of sensory stimulation at reducing the level of stress and preventing or limiting the development of stress-related behaviors, such as excessive vocalization, hypermotility and hypervigilance during kenneling (Bowman et al., 2015;Brayley & Montrose, 2016;Graham et al., 2005a;Graham et al., 2005b, Tod et al., 2005 may facilitate the integration process into the foster family. Furthermore, stress induced by passing from a shelter environment to a new home should not be overlooked (Osella et al., 2016). ...
Article
Millions of dogs enter public and private shelters every year. Shelters are often very stressful environments to dogs, which are kept in very limited space and are impeded to appease their social motivations. Furthermore, the environmental stimuli provided are generally quantitatively - hyper/hypo-stimulation - and qualitatively inadequate. In such conditions dogs are likely to develop abnormal behaviors as maladaptive coping strategies that are not only a symptom of low welfare, but they also drastically decrease their chances of being permanently adopted. Environmental enrichment, such as training sessions, additional cage furniture and food-filled toys have been shown to decrease levels of stress in confined dogs. However, many of these programs require a noticeable financial and time commitment. Unfortunately, many shelter running institutions lack necessary funds, personnel and time to provide their dogs with complex environmental enrichment programs. In this light, sensory stimulation may represent a scientifically valid, low-cost and no time-wasting instrument to enhance the average level of welfare of shelter dogs, limit the development of behavioral problems and increase dog adoptability.
... Alcohol disrupts the immune system, both physiologically and adaptively, and significantly deteriorates the body's defenses against infection, and such patients are more likely to develop a COVID-19 infection or any secondary infection. In addition, heavy alcohol use can put them at higher risk for developing other conditions such as obesity and chronic kidney diseases [18]. Severe alcoholic hepatitis patients may not receive average corticosteroid therapy, especially in areas where COVID-19 is more common. ...
... Such patients have significantly higher mortality rates. If a student has a bad liver due to alcoholism, CO-VID-19 infection can be a major decomposing factor [18]. ...
... It has been found that within two days of exposure rescue centre dogs appear more relaxed when exposed to classical music compared to silence [16]. Similarly, dogs exposed to classical music have been found to sleep more and vocalise less compared to those who are exposed to other acoustics such as heavy metal [17], with pop music and human conversation having no effect [18]. Laying hens, in contrast, have previously been found to shake their heads more and preen less when exposed to classical music compared to those who are not [19]. ...
Article
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COVID-19 (coronavirus diseases 2019) has caused a high rate of anxiety, depression, alcoholism and stress in veterinary and medical students. Prolonged closures have created a financial crisis for students. The poor quality of the online education system is not meeting the needs of these students. Many people suffer from psychological distress due to economic losses and loneliness. This review summarizes data from recent research papers that sheds light on the concerns of veterinary and medical students during the COVID-19 lockdown. Suggestions for future pandemics are also summarized. Medical and veterinary education system need new research on teaching methods, especially from a clinical point of view. In addition to improving the quality of online education in preparation for future crises, student well-being should also be considered to mitigate social crises. Because this COVID-19 pandemic has severely damaged the performance of students in academic and social life. More research is needed to improve the veterinary and medical education system during any pandemic.
... Current evidence shows sensory stimulation offers enrichment benefits to institutionalized 69 captive animals (Wells, 2009). Documented benefits with auditory stimulation in animals include 70 behavioral benefit in cows adapting to milking machines (Uetake et al., 1997), reduced 71 stereotypic behavior in Asian elephants (Wells et al., 2008), and improved HRV in kenneled 72 dogs exposed to classical music (Wells et al., 2002;Bowman et al., 2015). Heart rate variability 73 is reduced in shelter dogs after supplementation with human interaction as compared to control 74 dogs receiving minimal human contact (Bergamasco et al., 2010). ...
... In addition to mean heart rate (HR), the following time-domain variables were recorded: mean 129 resting heart rate (Wells et al., 2002). The loudness of the music in the laboratory room was 163 adjusted to 55±5 dB and the speakers were located within 1-to 6-meter distance from each 164 veterinary student pair and canine subject (Figures 1 & 2). ...
... 154The ratio between Low Frequency (LF) and High Frequency (HF) band powers (LF/HF) is a 155 useful clinical tool that represents a measure of the sympatho-vagal balance. stimulation, 'Through a Dog's Ear music series', is a psychoacoustic compilation 158 designed to promote calming effects in humans and was validated to promote the same effects in 159 dogs(Wells et al., 2002;Leeds et al., 2004). Psychoacoustic designed music allows the selection 160 of simple and slow [50-60 beats per minute (bpm)] piano sounds that result in greater calming 161 effects. ...
Article
Heart rate variability (HRV), the variability between subsequent heart beats, is a measure of autonomic tone, influenced by psychophysiological factors, neurohormonal mechanisms and cardiac disease. Auditory stimulation, specifically classical music, has been documented to benefit well-being in a number of animal species. The aim of this study was to determine whether exposure to classical music improved HRV in dogs used in training during veterinary education for practical laboratories teaching canine clinical examination skills. Sixteen dogs, institutional kenneled dogs and student-owned dogs, were recruited in a cross-over study with a seven-day washout period. Dogs were fitted with a Polar® wearlink strap and HRV data were collected using a Polar® RS800CX human heart rate monitor attached to the dog's collar during the procedure. There were significant differences (P value < 0.05) in HRV indices between dogs exposed to as compared with those not exposed to classical music, specifically the mean RR interval decreased by 6% from 588 to 551 (P value = 0.0072). The standard deviation of RR interval (STDRR) was significantly more variable, 89 versus 109, in the dogs exposed to music (P value = 0.01) and the RR triangulation index (RRTI) increased from 13 to 16 (P value = 0.008). One limitation of this study included small sample size. Different genres and type of music and their effect on HRV of dogs and other animals in veterinary training (and other) settings need to be explored in the future.
... There is some research on the perception of music and species-specific music in dogs (Leeds & Wagner, 2008), where it was found that soft rock, reggae, and classical music may have positive effects, whereas heavy metal had negative effects on dogs. Surprisingly, speciesspecific music appears to have no effect on dog behavior (Bowman, Dowell, & Evans, 2017;Bowman, Scottish, Dowell, & Evans, 2015;Kogan, Schoenfeld-Tacher, & Simon, 2012;Wells, Graham, & Hepper, 2002), unlike the preference shown by cats and monkeys (Snowdon & Teie, 2010;Snowdon et al., 2015). In contrast, it has been claimed that the calming effect of audiobooks exceeds that of music for dogs (Brayley & Montrose, 2016), although Wells et al. (2002) previously argued that classical music may outcompete speech. ...
... Surprisingly, speciesspecific music appears to have no effect on dog behavior (Bowman, Dowell, & Evans, 2017;Bowman, Scottish, Dowell, & Evans, 2015;Kogan, Schoenfeld-Tacher, & Simon, 2012;Wells, Graham, & Hepper, 2002), unlike the preference shown by cats and monkeys (Snowdon & Teie, 2010;Snowdon et al., 2015). In contrast, it has been claimed that the calming effect of audiobooks exceeds that of music for dogs (Brayley & Montrose, 2016), although Wells et al. (2002) previously argued that classical music may outcompete speech. These differences in the dog might reflect adaptation to the human environment or simply a familiarity effect. ...
... Shelters play a key role in saving animals from straying. However, living in shelter can contribute to the development of various welfare-related problems for animals by causing less adoptability and, consequently, complicating the management of shelters ( Wells et al., 2002 ;Lord et al., 2014 ;Kubesova et al., 2017 ). Since the animal welfare in shelters is both an ethical and an economical issue, it is important to better understand and evaluate it in order to improve the service provided by shelters ( Normando et al., 2006 ). ...
... It is generally accepted that many animal shelters can be potentially stressful places for animals, mainly due to space restrictions, lack of resources and high animal turnover ( Kessler and Turner, 1999 ;Wells et al., 2002 ). ...
Article
Shelters play a key role in saving animals from straying. However, the space restrictions, the lack of resources and the high animal turnover can increase stress levels and the rate of infectious diseases in cats and dogs. The aim of this study is to evaluate, through the buccal micronucleus assay, the level of genomic damage in shelter cats and dogs with respect to that observed in family cats and dogs. The hypothesis is that stressful environmental conditions, such as those potentially present in shelters, can affect the level of genomic damage. Study population included thirty healthy mixed breed cats and dogs with a minimum two-year presence in a shelter. The control group consisted of thirty healthy cats and dogs living in a home environment, using age/sex matching. The micronucleus assay was performed on one thousand exfoliated buccal cells per subject. Significant differences were found between shelter and family cats and dogs in terms of micronuclei frequency, indicating that a condition of stress found in sheltered animals may increase the levels of genomic damage. The ethotest confirms the increased levels of total aberrations in both stressed shelter cats and dogs. Conversely, no significant differences in the level of genomic damage were found between the sexes, as well as no correlation was found between age and the frequencies of micronuclei. In conclusion, we provided evidence of a possible correlation between physiological stress conditions and increased levels of genomic damage in a sample of sheltered cats and dogs. The results of our study also suggest that the buccal micronucleus assay, also considering the relatively low cost of laboratory procedure and its non-invasiveness, could be potential additional tool that, combined with the ethotest, may be able to provide a more comprehensive picture of the health status of animals living in communities.
... The students participated in a 60-min laboratory to practice physical examination skills while listening to music (Through a Dog's Ear, Volume 1) [22] or were in an adjacent room practicing without music. Volume 1 includes nine soundtracks with a total running time of 59:58 min, designed to induce calming effects for both canines and humans [22,30,31]. Music was played at a range of 55 ± 5 dB, 1-6 m from students. ...
... One of the major limitations of this study is that the music chosen may also have an effect on the behavior of the canine subjects and not only on the human subjects. Indeed, this music has been shown to have positive effects on human and canine subjects [30,31]. We do recognize the confounding variable of the music may have reduced canine anxiety and stress, making it easier to complete the exercise, thus reducing stress in students in the intervention group. ...
Article
Full-text available
Some veterinary students experience elevated stress, anxiety, and depression resulting in disease and psychological changes. Elevated arousal, negative moods, and lack of interest can negatively affect performance and learning. Psychoacoustic music promotes calming effects using simple and slow piano sounds and can positively impact well-being and functioning. This pilot study assessed the effects of music on blood pressure, pulse, arousal, and mood during a canine physical examination laboratory. In an AB/BA crossover study, 17 students were randomly allocated to practice physical examination skills while listening to Through a Dog's Ear, Volume 1. Psychological and physiologic data were collected. Nonparametric methods were used to test for significant differences in psychological and physiologic data and a linear mixed models approach was used to test for physiological differences. There were no significant baseline differences between the music and no music groups for DASS-21 depression, anxiety, or stress scores; however, there were significant time differences between pretest and posttest on arousal and mood as measured by the Profile of Mood Sates (POMS) Depression, Fatigue-Inertia, and Tension Anxiety subscales. Linear mixed models revealed no significant treatment effect on the pulse and diastolic blood pressure; however, there was a significant systolic blood pressure treatment effect. Future indications include repeating the study with a larger sample to examine longitudinal psychological and physiological benefits.
... Enhanced sleeping behaviour has been suggested to be indicative of relaxation and improved welfare in kennelled dogs (Kogan et al., 2012;Brayley and Montrose, 2016) and comparable to the increased resting behaviour found from use of enrichment in other kennelled dog studies (e.g. Wells et al., 2002a;Graham et al., 2005). It is important to note though that while enhanced resting and sleeping are often utilised as an indicator of increased welfare in dogs (e.g. ...
... It is important to note though that while enhanced resting and sleeping are often utilised as an indicator of increased welfare in dogs (e.g. Wells et al., 2002a;Graham et al., 2005;Kogan et al., 2012), inactivity is not a simple indicator of wellbeing. Increased inactivity may indicate apathy, boredom or learned helplessness (Wells et al., 2002b;Stephen and Ledger, 2005;Burn, 2017). ...
Article
Many domestic dogs are kept in rescue and rehoming shelters which are frequently stressful and under-stimulating environments. Dog welfare is often compromised within these environments and there is a need to determine new practical and effective methods of improving the welfare of these kennelled dogs. Olfactory stimulation has been demonstrated to have positive behavioural effects in a range of contexts, however this field remains relatively understudied in the domestic dog. This study aimed to investigate the effects of olfactory stimulation via vanilla, coconut, ginger and valerian upon the behaviour of 15 dogs at a rescue shelter. The dogs were simultaneously exposed to six olfactory conditions using scented cloths following a fixed order (cloth control, coconut, vanilla, valerian, ginger and odour control) for 2 h a day for 3 days with an intervening period of 2 days between conditions. The dogs' behaviour was recorded every 10 min throughout the 2 h olfactory conditions using instantaneous scan-sampling. Exposure to ginger, coconut, vanilla and valerian resulted in significantly lower levels of vocalisations and movement compared to the control conditions, while coconut and ginger additionally increased levels of sleeping behaviour. These odours may have application in rescue shelters due to the reduction of behaviours such as barking and activity which may be indicative of stress as well as being traits perceived as undesirable by adopters. This research provides support for the use of olfactory stimulation within the kennel environment.
... Other studies have focused on the effect music has on laboratory animals or livestock, concluding that some forms of music improve milk production and meat quality, while also decreasing potential indicators of stress, such as heart rate and blood pressure [27]. More commonly, research involving music and companion animals has focused on pet welfare in kenneled environments (working and shelter dog populations) [28][29][30][31][32][33]. Results from these studies have indicated that the type of auditory stimuli is important, with kenneled dogs showing more calm behaviors when exposed to classical music [33], and more active behaviors when exposed to heavy metal music [29]. ...
... More commonly, research involving music and companion animals has focused on pet welfare in kenneled environments (working and shelter dog populations) [28][29][30][31][32][33]. Results from these studies have indicated that the type of auditory stimuli is important, with kenneled dogs showing more calm behaviors when exposed to classical music [33], and more active behaviors when exposed to heavy metal music [29]. A separate study found that kenneled dogs displayed more relaxed behavior when exposed to audiobooks than when exposed to any other auditory stimuli [30]. ...
Article
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Veterinary visits can be stressful for dogs, but how their wellbeing changes during a visit is not well understood. Music therapy has been successfully used in clinical practice to alleviate stress and anxiety in people. The present study aimed to understand how canine stress changes during a veterinary visit, establish the effect of music, and highlight measures which may be of practical use. In a randomized crossover design, dogs were exposed to no music and a bespoke piece of classical music at a tempo designed to match their resting heart rate during a mock veterinary visit. Dogs were scored as more “afraid” during the physical examination compared to when they were in the hospital kennel (p < 0.001). Salivary cortisol, IgA, and infrared temperature all increased significantly (p < 0.05) from baseline to post-kennel and post-examination, with no effect of music treatment. Core body temperature (p = 0.010) and the odds of ‘relaxed’ lips (p = 0.020) were lower when dogs were exposed to music compared to control visits. Overall, dogs experienced changes in physiology and behavior, indicative of increased stress, over the course of the visit. Additional research is required to further understand the effect that bespoke music may have in alleviating canine stress during veterinary visits.
... There is some research on the perception of music and species-specific music in dogs (Leeds & Wagner, 2008), where it was found that soft rock, reggae, and classical music may have positive effects, whereas heavy metal had negative effects on dogs. Surprisingly, species-specific music appears to have no effect on dog behavior (Bowman, Dowell, & Evans, 2017;Bowman, Scottish, Dowell, & Evans, 2015;Kogan, Schoenfeld-Tacher, & Simon, 2012;Wells, Graham, & Hepper, 2002), unlike the preference shown by cats and monkeys (Snowdon & Teie, 2010;Snowdon et al., 2015). In contrast, it has been claimed that the calming effect of audiobooks exceeds that of music for dogs (Brayley & Montrose, 2016), although Wells et al. (2002) previously argued that classical music may outcompete speech. ...
... Surprisingly, species-specific music appears to have no effect on dog behavior (Bowman, Dowell, & Evans, 2017;Bowman, Scottish, Dowell, & Evans, 2015;Kogan, Schoenfeld-Tacher, & Simon, 2012;Wells, Graham, & Hepper, 2002), unlike the preference shown by cats and monkeys (Snowdon & Teie, 2010;Snowdon et al., 2015). In contrast, it has been claimed that the calming effect of audiobooks exceeds that of music for dogs (Brayley & Montrose, 2016), although Wells et al. (2002) previously argued that classical music may outcompete speech. These differences in the dog might reflect adaptation to the human environment or simply a familiarity effect. ...
... 9-14 When exposed to classical music, dogs spent more time resting, sleeping and lying down, and less time vocalising, standing and displaying postures involving motion. [9][10][11][12][13] Physiological data also showed that classical music significantly lowered heart rate and prompted changes in HRV which indicates parasympathetic nervous system dominance. [11][12][13][14] All six studies concluded that these behavioural and physiological changes represent a lowering of stress levels and inferred that exposure to classical music enhanced the welfare of the study participants. ...
Article
Clinical scenario: Classical music has been extensively studied and acknowledged for its ability to reduce stress and improve patient outcomes in human medicine. It has also been shown to influence the disposition of many captive species within the animal kingdom. Some studies have hypothesised that classical music can also benefit dogs, offering the potential to provide a simple and cost-effective method to improve patient outcomes and canine welfare when dogs are placed in unfamiliar and potentially stressful environments. This critical appraisal examines the current evidence available on the use of classical music for the purpose of stress reduction in hospitalised dogs. Clinical bottom line: Based on six experimental studies, there is only weak evidence which demonstrates that exposure to classical music reduces stress in hospitalised dogs undergoing veterinary intervention. However; it was shown that classical music has the ability to significantly influence specific behaviours and physiological parameters that have been associated with the canine stress response such as heart rate variability, level of vocalisation and time spent resting.
... Classical music, which was found to reduce signs of stress in shelter dogs [9], was played in each room from noon to closing time at 17:00. Animals were provided with food-toys twice a week; among these were cardboard egg cartons filled with treats, soft boxes filled with treats inside other boxes (forcing them to dig to find the reward), and a metal soup can filled with dog food and treats. ...
Article
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Dogs in shelters may be unattended at night. The purpose of this study is to describe the night-time behavior of dogs in a shelter and to determine if artificial light affected their sleeping patterns. Ten dogs were video-recorded under both light and dark conditions and their behavior recorded using focal animal sampling. The dogs were lying down 649 ± 40 min (mean ± SD) in the light condition and 629 ± 58 min in the dark condition each night. They awoke, stood up, turned around and then lay down again every 48 to 50 min. There was no significant difference in time spent lying between the two conditions (p > 0.05). Light did not seem to affect their behavior. The conclusion is that dogs in shelters may sleep in the absence of people and that light does not disrupt their sleep patterns.
... Beyond the limitations of companionship, space and excessive noise, life in the shelter often results in dogs having little control over their daily lives, particularly contingencies surrounding interactions with other dogs and people (Hennessy et al., 1997). This lack of control may be a source of apathetic behavior, wherein dogs display less interest towards shelter visitors over time (Wells & Hepper, 1992) and remain in the back of the kennel (Wells, Graham & Hepper, 2002). Similarly, the lack of predictability within the shelter environment can also have a psychological impact, such as the uncertainty related to routines, like leashed walks or opportunities to eliminate outside of the kennel (Hennessy et al., 1998). ...
Article
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One of the greatest stressors for dogs living in animal shelters is social isolation. Many studies have demonstrated that human interaction reduces cortisol in shelter dogs, with the possibility that longer periods of interaction may yield greater effects. These types of interventions are contingent upon removing the dog from the kennel and any such reductions in cortisol are often lost when the dog returns to the kennel. More recently, animal shelters are utilizing short-term fostering programs to provide relief from the perceived stresses of kennel life; however the effects of these programs are not well understood. This study assessed the impacts of one-and two-night fostering programs on the urinary cortisol levels, resting pulse rates, longest bout of uninterrupted rest, and proportion of time spent resting of dogs awaiting adoption. Five animal shelters, open and limited-admission facilities, from across the United States participated in the study. During the study, dogs' urine was collected in the morning before, during, and after fostering stays for cortisol: creatinine analysis. Non-invasive health monitors were worn by the dogs, which collected heart rates and activity levels, in the shelter and in foster homes. In total, 207 dogs participated in the study, and 1,076 cortisol values were used in our analysis. Across all shelters, we found that dogs' cortisol: creatinine ratios dropped significantly during their fostering stay, but returned to baseline levels after return to the shelter. However, the observed reduction in cortisol varied in magnitude across shelters. We found that dogs of greater weight, age, and average resting pulse rate had higher cortisol levels; and dogs with longer bouts of uninterrupted rest had lower cortisol levels. Dogs had their longest bouts of rest during sleepovers, followed by in the shelter after their sleepovers. Lastly, significant differences were found when comparing in-shelter cortisol values at our five shelters, differences that were in some cases greater than the impact of the fostering intervention itself. Considering the diversity of facilities that participated in this study, it is possible that as yet unstudied, shelter-specific, environmental factors could be contributing to the overall welfare of shelter dogs. Thus while a reprieve from the shelter is impactful for dogs awaiting adoption, mitigating the stressors present in kenneling conditions should also be addressed to improve the lives of shelter dogs.
... Spatial restrictions [13,14] and noise disturbance [15,16] can cause stress and negatively impact on the quality of life of dogs. Family composition and dynamic may influence the extent to which these and other factors are important in a given home, but this subject seems to be relatively unexplored. ...
Article
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There is growing scientific and societal recognition of the role that pet dogs can play in healthy development of children; both those who are neuro-typically developing and those who live with a neuro-developmental disorder, such as autism or attention deficit hyperactiv-ity disorder. However, little attention has been paid to how living with children positively and negatively affects quality of life of a pet dog. In this exploratory study we conducted semi-structured interviews with parents of neuro-typically developing children (n = 18) and those with a neuro-developmental disorder (n = 18) who owned a pet dog, until no new factors were identified. Living with children brought potentially positive benefits to the dog's life including: imposition of a routine, participation in recreational activities and the development of a strong bond between the child and the dog.
... Music has been previously used to mask background noise and reduce stress in dogs, particularly within kennels (Bowman et al., 2015;Kogan et al., 2012;Wells et al., 2002). However, a recent study reported that within a veterinary environment, classical music only influenced owner satisfaction during wait time and had no effect on canine anxiety levels during their veterinary visit (Engler and Bain, 2017). ...
Article
Veterinary visits result in behavioural and physiological signs of fear and stress for many companion dogs. There are a number of factors that likely contribute to this response, but little is known about possible effects of the acoustic environment. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of elevated levels of common veterinary background noises on fear-related responses in dogs during a routine physical examination in a veterinary setting. Testing took place in an examination room at a veterinary clinic and involved 33 owned companion dogs. All dogs received a standardized physical examination where each dog was either presented with no additional noise (n = 16, control), or a pre-recorded noise track that included the sounds of people talking, dogs barking, and metal doors clanging (n = 17). This noise track was played back with a peak sound level of 68.0 dB, which is comparable to levels previously recorded in clinic settings. The dogs’ behavioural responses (lip licking, yawning, reduced posture, avoidance, vocalizing, trembling) were scored from video by a blinded observer for each stage of the physical examination (i.e., head exam, lymph node palpation, body palpation, temperature assessment, heart rate assessment, and respiratory rate assessment). In addition, willingness to approach the examiner was assessed before and after the examination. For behavioural measures, generalized mixed models and Fisher's exact tests were used to assess the effects of noise, exam phase, sex, and age, with dog as a random effect. For temperature, a general linear model was used to assess the effects of noise, sex, and age, and the remaining physiological measures were assessed using t-tests. Only respiratory rate was increased with exposure to background noise (F 1,31 = 6.74, p = 0.0143); no other responses were affected. However, lip licking (F 5,65 = 4.04, p = 0.003), avoidance (F 5,158 = 6.36, p < 0.0001), and posture reductions (F 5,158 = 3.55, p = 0.0045) were increased during some exam phases. Background noise only affected a single, physiological measure during a routine exam, while exam phase seemed to have a larger influence, affecting various behavioural measures. These results suggest that ceiling effects did not prevent proper assessment of responses to noise. Thus, while noise should be minimized where possible, aspects of the examination itself should be a key focus of future research examining methods to reduce stress in dogs during veterinary examinations.
... In addition, while the majority of participants stated that use of music or television could reduce stress in animals during veterinary visits, a third of participants were unsure if these interventions were useful or not. While this is perhaps not overly problematic for the use of television which, though it has been suggested to have some benefits, does not seem of great interest to dogs and cats (Graham et al, 2005;Ellis and Wells, 2008), auditory enrichment has been suggested to reduce stress in dogs (Wells et al, 2002;Kogan et al, 2012;Bowman et al, 2015). Less support is evident for its use in cats (Stephens and Montrose, 2014), although cats do exhibit a preference for specially designed species-appropriate music (Snowdon et al, 2015). ...
Article
Background: The veterinary practice can be a stressful environment for pets. The stress animals experience when visiting the practice can impact on health, welfare and the likelihood of owners regularly visiting the practice. A number of different approaches have been suggested to be beneficial in reducing stress at the veterinary practice however the methods that practices use to try and reduce stress in animals during veterinary visits, and the reasons for the use of these approaches, has not been determined. Aim: The aim of this study was to determine what methods veterinary practices in the UK use to try to reduce stress in animals during veterinary visits, and gather the views of veterinary staff on the efficacy of these practices. Method: Veterinary practices in the UK (n=45) completed an online mixed methods questionnaire providing information on the practice's use of separate waiting rooms, treat feeding, rehearsal visits, correct handling of animals, appeasing pheromones and sensory enrichment. The reasons why these approaches were or were not used, and the participants' views on whether these practices reduced stress during veterinary visits were also determined. Results: The majority of practices surveyed fed treats to animals during veterinary visits, offered rehearsal visits to animals and their owners, used appeasing pheromones in the practice and stated that they used correct handling techniques for different species during consultations. In addition, the majority of practices surveyed did not have more than one waiting room or use a television or auditory device to try and reduce stress in animals during veterinary visits. The majority of participants believed that separate waiting rooms, rehearsal visits, treat feeding, appeasing pheromones, sensory enrichment and correct handling can reduce stress in animals during veterinary visits. Conclusion: A range of methods are used by veterinary practices within the UK to attempt to reduce stress in animals during veterinary visits. Greater consideration of methods to facilitate separation of species where distinct waiting rooms are not feasible, for example via implementing appointments for cats and dogs on different days and times, would be beneficial. In addition, veterinary staff should consider utilising classical or specially designed species-specific music in the veterinary practice as this may help mitigate the stress of cats and dogs visiting the practice.
... The three emotions were induced through both visual and auditory sound. Classical music has been shown to relax dogs (Wells et al., 2002), so it was used for the relaxing segment along with slow-moving scenery; excited barks and squeaks were used for the excited segment to stimulate the dog and confused dog howls and dogs were used for the confused segment. To stimulate the dogs' emotions visually, a video of dogs portraying the emotion that the video was trying to stimulate were also used, assuming the dog's ability to recognise and sometimes mirror emotions (Schwab & Huber, 2006;Albuquerque et al., 2016). ...
Thesis
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The ubiquity of technology has resulted in machinery occupying our homes, increasing the exposure and use of screen devices to dogs. Dogs have long viewed computer screens, yet the usability of, and the dog’s attention to, these screen devices remains under-researched. This research focuses on investigating a dog’s attention to screens and the human’s and researcher’s evaluation of this. The specific aim was to determine how to capture this attention through both technology devices and coded methods. The research contributes to the knowledge area of dogs’ screen interactions and dog-computer interaction (DCI) methods within animal-computer interaction (ACI). It adds literature in the novel field on dogs’ use of screens to watch media and explores method transference from human-computer interaction (HCI). This helps lay down the foundation for the DCI community and gives indications on the future directions of DCI research with screen interfaces. The research is explored through four research questions: Can methods be developed that can capture a dog’s attention to single, multiple and dog-activated screens in a dog-centric manner? When different media are presented to dogs, do they show preferences, and do they follow preferred media as they move from one screen to another? In what ways can a dog’s attention to screens be quantified in a useful way from an owner, computer and researcher standpoint? and What effect does taking a dog-centric philosophy have on the study of dog-computer interaction? This thesis is heavily embedded within the ethical philosophical stance of dog-centric research. This shapes the methods used and the technology created. It focuses on dog user requirements that allow for untrained interaction allowing the dog to explore the technology in a natural way. In this light, the role that dogs take within the method and evaluation process and the interaction between the modalities of human, dogs and computers are examined. This thesis shows that it is possible to capture a dog’s attention to screen interfaces from the researcher, the dog owner and the dog itself within the dog-centric philosophical approach. These findings are derived from three empirical studies and two research tools. The two research tools presented deliver DCI enhanced interpretive feedback for DCI research in tool 1 and provide a way of modelling the dog user in tool 2. Tool 1 enhances, from a human standpoint, the analysis of a dog’s attention by facilitating the owner to be an informed observer through providing a Dog Information Sheet (DISH) on dog behaviour. Tool 2 uses information from the owners of 196 dogs to craft six role-based personas across different breeds, ages and home situations to aid researchers during the initial stages of research and design in DCI. This also provided a data storehouse of dog information. The three empirical studies narrate a story across finding ways of automating the detection of a dog’s attention to TV like screens, to detecting a dog’s attention to media across multiple screens and then allowing the dog to trigger its own media on a screen. Study one used MATLAB to classify where a dog’s head is facing within three variables (left/centre and right) within a high accuracy of above 82%. The second study investigated a dog’s attention across multiple screens using video evidence, analysed by a researcher, to classify a dog’s attention. This indicated that dogs did not follow media content from one screen to another and showed that they preferred a favoured screen. In this study, it was found dogs prefer dog-based media and had short (under 3 seconds) attentive glances. The third study concluded the thesis using a specially designed screen device that was triggered by the dog’s proximity, to investigate a dog’s attention, over a two-week period, to a dog-activated screen system that plays media. This study demonstrated that dogs would attend to a screen device playing media and that proximity can be used as an activator of media content. The work concluded by listing contributions regarding the design, methods and principles of screen systems for dogs. Initial findings are provided for the DCI field of low attention times with dogs and screens (approximately 3 seconds) and that the videos attended to by dogs were mainly of dog context. In this regard, short media clips should be used with dogs. Dogs throughout this thesis did not seem to attend much to screens preferring to watch nothing and often maintaining or keeping the same level of attention towards dog imitated machines. One of the main contributions this thesis provides are empirical methods to provide some insight into how dog-centric methods can be used in DCI. These methods indicate the importance of the data gathered from the time spent on task with a device is as valuable as the time spent without the device. The tools provided form a contribution of ways to model the dog user and enhancing the feedback from the owner leading to the conclusion that the optimal dog-centric environment is with high dog autonomy and low human involvement during data collection. Within this, discussion is given on the tension within the dog-centric philosophy method approach between the dog and the data where the research philosophy reflected in the principles given were found to hindered data collection but do ensure the dogs welfare. For the ACI field in DCI this thesis suggests that the researcher determines the pool of dogs that the researcher is considering before choosing the method and system advocating for getting to know your end user. This narrative is followed by an exploration of potential growth areas of interactive media technology for dogs, identifying regions of DCI that could be further studied such as multiuser systems, further exploring how the human impacts DCI research, the ACI to HCI transference, investing further into what is interactivity in ACI and dog-driven devices and lastly the continue to develop dog-centric methods for DCI research.
... Dogs remained in the same kennel throughout the experiment. Observations were conducted 30 minutes after application of the product (as per Graham et al., 2005) with behavioral observations starting with the appearance of the stressor dog at approximately 1 m from the kennel and each observation lasting 10 seconds. Focal sampling was used to record the frequency of behaviors displayed by the dogs. ...
Article
Exposure to dog appeasing pheromones (DAP) has been suggested to reduce stress related behaviors in dogs; however, the effects of DAP administered using a portable, rapid use spray has not received as much attention as the plug-in format. The aim of the present study was to determine whether DAP spray reduced stress related behaviors in rescue shelter dogs (Canis familiaris). Barking intensity, frequency of barking and stress related behaviors in the presence of a stressor were recorded using a repeated measures design with and without the use of spray pheromones. The mean barking intensity was reduced in dogs exposed to DAP spray although no significant difference in the frequency of barking or occurrence of stress related behaviors was found. This change in barking behavior is difficult to interpret as being beneficial to dog welfare, due to the lack of support from a reduction in the other stress indicators. Further research is needed which utilizes both a longer time period of DAP exposure and behavioral observation to understand any effects of DAP on dogs’ behavior. A larger sample size, alongside use of different stressors and physiological stress indicators, should also be considered.
... One study (Kogan, Schoenfeld-Tacher, and Simon, 2012 [52]) found that playing "classical music" increased the amount of time kennelled dogs spent sleeping and decreased vocalising compared to other music or no music, and "heavy metal" music increased body shaking (or trembling). In another study of kennelled dogs, Wells, Graham, and Hepper (2002 [53]) also found increases in resting postures and decreased barking to classical music, while heavy metal music elicited increased barking. However, research on the effects of sound in dogs is unclear, and it may be that music is not the most effective method of acoustic enrichment, for dogs at least. ...
Article
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Minimising stress for patients should always be a priority in the veterinary hospital. However, this is often overlooked. While a “no stress” environment is not possible, understanding how to create a “low stress” (sometimes called “fear-free”) environment and how to handle animals in a less stressful manner benefits patients, staff and the hospital alike. Many veterinary practitioners believe creating a low stress environment is too hard and too time consuming, but this need not be the case. With some simple approaches, minimising patient, and hence staff, stress is achievable in all veterinary practices. This article provides a background on why minimising stress is important and outlines some practical steps that can be taken by staff to minimise stress for presenting and hospitalised patients. Useful resources on recognising signs of stress in dogs and cats, handling, restraint, behaviour modification, medications, and hospital design are provided.
... Sound can also be played when an animal must enter an unfamiliar enclosure or area. Music is also increasingly used in dog shelters to calm and sooth new arrivals (Wells et al. 2002). As with television, these sounds must not be played continuously but only for several minutes a day or week. ...
Chapter
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Animal welfare can be defined on the principle that an captive animal must not present prolonged negative emotional states thanks to physical and social environments that allow it to express its full behavioural repertoire and maintain its homeostasis. For several years, livestock breeders and zoos have been working to increase the welfare of their animals by applying ergonomic principles otherwise called environmental "enrichments". These enrichments must allow the animal to conduct a daily activity that satisfies it physical, physiological and cognitive needs, which in concrete terms is shown by (1) an increase in behavioural diversity, (2) a reduction in the frequency of abnormal behaviours (stereotypies for example), and finally (3) an increase in the positive and full use of the captive environment. This of course requires specific knowledge of the animal's behavioural repertoire in its natural environment, but also of its ecology and biology in general. Five enrichment categories can be defined: physical, social, feed, sensory and cognitive. Much progress has been made in terms of physical enrichment: size of pen or presence of structures and accessories are now seen as a priority, particularly at zoos. But there is room for other improvements, particularly for social enrichment: the important presence of animals of the same species is often overlooked. In terms of food, key problems are often noted for social carnivores but in general there is very little diversity in feed composition or its spatial or temporal distribution. Once again, improvements can only be made through understanding of the biology and ethology of the species held in captivity but also by examining the principle of animal welfare at all levels of society.
... Par exemple, l'écoute de musique déclenche une augmentation de la synthèse de calcium et de dopamine chez les rats, suggérant que cela pourrait diminuer les symptômes des maladies impliquant des dysfonctionnements dopaminergiques (Sutoo et Akiyama, 2004). Chez les chiens (Canus lupus familiaris), la musique diminue les aboiements, augmente le temps passé à se reposer (Wells et al., 2002) et engendre plusieurs changements physiologiques bénéfiques impliquant une diminution du niveau de stress (Bowman et al., 2017) : c'est spécialement le cas pour la musique classique (Kogan et al., 2012). Parmi les animaux captifs, les éléphants d'Asie montrent également une diminution des comportements stéréotypés à l'écoute de musique (Wells et Irwin, 2008) et les chimpanzés davantage de comportements sociaux tels que le toilettage, le jeu et l'exploration (Howell et al., 2003). ...
... Bowman et al. [47] used a variety of music genres (Soft Rock, Motown, Pop, Reggae and Classical) and found that when any type of music was played, dogs spent less time standing and more time lying (with the exception of Reggae). Wells et al. [48] played different types of music (Classical, Heavy Metal and Pop), as well as human conversation, and found that dogs exposed to classical music spent more time resting and less time standing than dogs exposed to the other treatments. In Bowman et al. [9], the initial effects of classical music compared to a silent control, were a reduction in vocalisation and increase in time lying down, but dogs habituated to the stimuli by the second day of exposure. ...
Article
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Animal shelters can be stressful environments and time in care may affect individual dogs in negative ways, so it is important to try to reduce stress and arousal levels to improve welfare and chance of adoption. A key element of the stress response is the activation of the autonomic nervous system (ANS), and a non-invasive tool to measure this activity is heart rate variability (HRV). Physiologically, stress and arousal result in the production of corticosteroids, increased heart rate and decreased HRV. Environmental enrichment can help to reduce arousal related behaviours in dogs and this study focused on sensory environmental enrichment using olfactory and auditory stimuli with shelter dogs. The aim was to determine if these stimuli have a physiological effect on dogs and if this could be detected through HRV. Sixty dogs were allocated to one of three stimuli groups: lavender, dog appeasing pheromone and music or a control group, and usable heart rate variability data were obtained from 34 dogs. Stimuli were applied for 3 h a day on five consecutive days, with HRV recorded for 4 h (treatment period + 1 h post-treatment) on the 5th and last day of exposure to the stimuli by a Polar® heart rate monitor attached to the dog’s chest. HRV results suggest that music activates both branches of the ANS, which may be useful to relieve both the stress and boredom in shelter environments.
... Gentle stroking combined with human vocalisation ("high pitched gentle tone") were shown to reduce stress and promote mucosal immunity [19], to reduce the incidence of upper respiratory tract disease [19], and to decrease fear of humans in cats [5]. However, playbacks of human conversation did not change shelter dogs' behaviour [20]. Another way to implement the human voice as sensory stimulation is the use of audiobooks, i.e., audio recordings of someone reading a book, and to play them to shelter animals. ...
Article
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Reading books to shelter animals combining auditory enrichment with human presence is increasingly used although its effects on animal welfare have not yet been investigated. This study compared the behaviour of single-housed shelter dogs and cats during a prerecorded reading condition in the absence or presence of an unfamiliar human (without direct physical contact). Fourteen dogs and twenty-one cats were observed in their enclosure in the two conditions in a counterbalanced order. Behaviours such as scratching the door, gaze direction and location in relation to the audio source/human were analysed from video recording for 10 min per condition. Dogs spent more time in their bed (p < 0.047) and looking at the auditory source (p < 0.004) when a human was present. Cats showed door scratching and rubbing when a human was present (p < 0.043), whereas they tended to spend more time in the vertical dimension (p = 0.051), where the hiding boxes were located, during auditory stimulation without a human present. These results show that the presence of a human induces greater interest compared to just audio stimulation in shelter dogs and cats but may induce frustration likely due to not being able to physically interact in some animals.
... Stress factors include the sounds of other dogs; limited ability to exercise and restricted movement; fewer opportunities for social interactions, particularly if dogs were formally in a home; and does not allow for independent decision making which can lead to apathy [25][26][27][28]. The inability to interact with other dogs can add to the social isolation [20,25,29,30]. ...
Article
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There has been discussion in traditional and social media about increases in the numbers of people willing to foster animals in their homes during the pandemic. However, there is a lack of empirical data on whether that increase was a temporary response to the stress of COVID-19 or the ability to work from home, if it might have lasting effects, or indeed, whether an increase occurred at all. Using a national survey of over 600 animal shelter/rescue foster volunteers it appears that fostering did increase during the pandemic (x2 = 45.20, p = 0.00), particularly among volunteers working from home, those with higher education, those that were younger and male, and those that did not have their own dog. The study concludes that there was an increase in fostering but that the impact is likely to be ephemeral predicated on the ability to work from home. Organizations may be able to retain foster volunteers through support, particularly emotional support, directed at the human as opposed to focusing solely on the dog.
... Because of such effects in humans, it has been hypothesised that passive exposure to music might have similar effects on non-human animals (hereafter animals). There is growing attention being paid to the utility of passive music exposure for improving animal welfare or productivity in a broad range of captive environments Hoy et al., 2010;Krohn et al., 2011;Wells et al., 2002) because it is cost-effective, instantaneous, and easy to implement. Consequently, the number of studies that examine the impact of passive music exposure on animals is increasing by the year, leading to a common view that music is likely good for animal welfare. ...
Article
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Music can have powerful effects on human health and wellbeing. These findings have inspired an emerging field of research that focuses on the potential of music for animal welfare, with most studies investigating whether music can enhance overall wellbeing. However, this sole focus on discovering what effects music have on animals is insufficient for advancing scientific and practical understanding of how music can be used as an enrichment tool and can also lead to problems in experimental design and interpretation. This paper argues for a different approach to the study of music for welfare, where music is used to address specific welfare goals, taking account what animals hear in music and selecting or creating ‘musical’ compositions that test current hypotheses about how music is able to influence animal behaviour and physiology. Within this conceptual framework, we outline the process through which perceptual abilities influence welfare outcomes and suggest reframing music for welfare research as Auditory Enrichment Research which adopts a targeted approach that does not purpose music as an all-round welfare enhancer but rather investigates whether auditory enrichment can ameliorate specific welfare problems based on species-specific perceptual abilities, needs, and welfare goals. Ultimately, we hope that these discussions will help to bring greater unification, vision, and directionality in the field.
... Many factors can be stressful for dogs in a veterinary practice (Edwards et al., 2019), such as transportation between home and the practice (Beerda et al., 1997), the novel location (Beerda et al., 1997), the 'white coat effect' (Kallet et al., 1997;Belew et al., 1999), the presence of new people and animals (Scotney, 2010), and unusual sounds and activities (Beerda et al., 1997;Wells et al., 2002). Even smells such as those released by stressed people and animals can be stressful for dogs (Graham et al., 2005;Siniscalchi et al., 2011Siniscalchi et al., , 2016. ...
Article
Veterinary practices can be stressful places for dogs. Decreasing stress during veterinary consultations is therefore a major concern, since animal welfare matters both for owners and veterinarians. Stress can be expressed through behaviour modifications; monitoring canine behaviour is thus one way to assess stress levels. We also know that the owner can affect dog behaviour in different ways. The aim of this study was therefore to assess the effect of the presence of owners on the behaviour of their dogs in veterinary consultations. We studied 25 dog-owner dyads at two standardised veterinary consultations, conducted at intervals of 5-7 weeks; the owner was present for the first consultation and absent for the second (O/NoO group, n = 12), or vice versa (NoO/O group, n = 13). A consultation consisted in three phases: exploration, examination, greeting. Dog behaviours were compared between the two conditions using a video recording. Despite some limitations (e.g. no male owners, the exclusion of aggressive dogs, a limited sample size, minimally invasive veterinary examinations, restricted owner-dog interactions), our results showed that the presence or absence of the owner had no significant effect on the stress-related behaviour of the dog or the veterinarian’s ability to handle the animal during the examination phase (P > 0.05). Nevertheless, the behaviour of the dogs towards people was affected before, during, and after the veterinary examination. In the presence of their owner, dogs were more willing to enter the consultation room (P < 0.05), and they appeared more relaxed during the exploration phase (P < 0.01). During the examination, dogs looked in direction of their owner in both situations (owner present and behind the door, respectively; P < 0.001). These results suggest that allowing the owner to stay in the room during veterinary consultations is a better option for canine welfare.
... Many factors can be stressful for dogs in a veterinary practice (Edwards et al., 2019), such as transportation between home and the practice (Beerda et al., 1997), the novel location (Beerda et al., 1997), the 'white coat effect' (Kallet et al., 1997;Belew et al., 1999), the presence of new people and animals (Scotney, 2010), and unusual sounds and activities (Beerda et al., 1997;Wells et al., 2002). Even smells such as those released by stressed people and animals can be stressful for dogs (Graham et al., 2005;Siniscalchi et al., 2011Siniscalchi et al., , 2016. ...
Article
Dogs synchronise their behaviour with those of their owners when confronted with an unfamiliar situation and interactions with their owners have been shown to decrease the dog’s stress levels in some instances. However, whether owners may help manage dog anxiety during veterinary consultations remains unclear. In Part I, we compared the behaviour of dogs in the presence or absence of their owners during consultations, which consisted in three phases: exploration, examination, and greeting. Our findings suggest that allowing owners to attend consultations may be beneficial for dogs. In Part II, we investigated the direct relationship between owners’ actions and their dog’s behaviour. Using the videos from Part I, we examined whether: (1) dogs interact more when their owner is more interactive; (2) owners’ stress scores are related to canine stress-related behaviour and emotional state; (3) owners’ actions influence canine stress-related behaviours, emotional state and tolerance to manipulations; (4) canine stress-related behaviours and emotional state are associated with increased eye contact with their owners. We analysed the recordings of 29 dog-owner dyads submitted to a veterinary consultation in Part I. The behaviours of the dogs and their owners were analysed, and their emotional states were scored. The ease of manipulations was also scored. Despite limitations (e.g. no physical contact during examinations, no invasive procedures, aggressive dogs excluded, no male owners, limited sample size), our study showed a link between dog and owner behaviours: when owners attended an examination, their negative behaviours intensified the signs of anxiety in their dogs. Additionally, visual and verbal attempts to comfort their dog had no significant effect. However, we observed that the more dogs displayed stress-related behaviours, the more they established eye contact with their owners, suggesting that dogs seek information (through social referencing) or reassurance from their owners.
... Music can be played to help block out other sounds, but should be played at a quiet level. Studies show a potential for classical music to have a calming effect on animals (33,(43)(44)(45). Cats prefer a much warmer environment than what we prefer, between 35 and 38 • C. Offer cats large towels so that they can burrow underneath, if desired, to help them maintain their preferred ambient temperature. ...
Article
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Veterinarians perform surgery for a number of reasons, from treating a problem to preventing future problems. There is an inextricable link between the physical and psychological aspects of an animal's health, and surgery is often a conduit to bridge that gap. Some surgical procedures can affect an animal's behavior, such as castration, and some pose an ethical dilemma, such as ear cropping and declawing. Ameliorating pain, decreasing stressful experiences for the animal, and identifying and treating concurrent problem behaviors are hallmarks of improving animal welfare. The purpose of this article is to outline some of these interrelationships and ethical dilemmas, providing evidence-based verification as applicable.
... 10 Music's beneficial effects have been reported in other animals, including: reduction in stereotyped behaviors in elephants; 11 reduction in chimpanzee aggressiveness and an increase in their rest time; 12 increase in the milk production of dairy cows and an easier approach to the milking parlor when music was playing; 13,14 and reduction in the barking frequency of sheltered dogs and, when classical music was playing, more time resting and less time standing. 15 Bowman et al also studied dogs, and they found no significant reduction in barking; however, barking increased after ceasing the sound stimulus. 16 Several environmental aspects can affect the wellbeing of cats when confined in a hospital environment. ...
Article
Objectives This study aimed to evaluate the use of two different types of music – cat-specific music and classical music – compared with no music, to reduce stress in cats during hospitalization. Methods Thirty-five hospitalized cats were randomly divided into three groups and each group received a different stimulus – cat-specific music, classical music or no music (control) – throughout their hospitalization. Respiratory rate, salivary cortisol and social interaction were documented. A blinded researcher performed the Cat Stress Score (CSS) during the video analysis of recordings at five specific times over 31 h of hospitalization. Results There was no difference in the mean CSS between cats listening to cat-specific music, classical music and control throughout the five evaluations. Cat-specific music had a higher percentage of positive social interactions than the other groups on the first evaluation ( P <0.05). The average respiratory rate was significantly lower in the classical music group vs control on the fourth evaluation ( P <0.05). Although statistically insignificant, the average respiratory rate decreased only in the classical music group during the five evaluations. Cortisol quantification did not seem to follow the CSS results. However, owing to the low and unrepresentative number of samples, it was not possible to perform statistical analysis on these results or a group sample comparison. Conclusions and relevance Both cat-specific music and classical music seem to have some benefit to hospitalized cats. The salivary cortisol analysis was not adequate nor useful to measure stress in hospitalized cats in our study.
... In dogs, classical music increased sleep and rest behavior in three studies, whereas rock music led to increased activity and barking in three studies [26][27][28]. However, two other studies reported no effects of music on behavior [29,30]. ...
Article
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Playing music or natural sounds to animals in human care is thought to have beneficial effects. An analysis of published papers on the use of human-based music with animals demonstrates a variety of different results even within the same species. These mixed results suggest the value of tailoring music to the sensory systems of the species involved and in selecting musical structures that are likely to produce the desired effects. I provide a conceptual framework based on the combined knowledge of the natural communication system of a species coupled with musical structures known to differentially influence emotional states, e.g., calming an agitated animal versus stimulating a lethargic animal. This new concept of animal-based music, which is based on understanding animal communication, will lead to more consistent and specific effects of music. Knowledge and appropriate use of animal-based music are important in future research and applications if we are to improve the well-being of animals that are dependent upon human care for their survival.
... 10 Music's beneficial effects have been reported in other animals, including: reduction in stereotyped behaviors in elephants; 11 reduction in chimpanzee aggressiveness and an increase in their rest time; 12 increase in the milk production of dairy cows and an easier approach to the milking parlor when music was playing; 13,14 and reduction in the barking frequency of sheltered dogs and, when classical music was playing, more time resting and less time standing. 15 Bowman et al also studied dogs, and they found no significant reduction in barking; however, barking increased after ceasing the sound stimulus. 16 Several environmental aspects can affect the wellbeing of cats when confined in a hospital environment. ...
Article
Objectives This study aimed to evaluate the use of two different types of music – cat-specific music and classical music – compared with no music, to reduce stress in cats during hospitalization. Methods Thirty-five hospitalized cats were randomly divided into three groups and each group received a different stimulus – cat-specific music, classical music or no music (control) – throughout their hospitalization. Respiratory rate, salivary cortisol and social interaction were documented. A blinded researcher performed the Cat Stress Score (CSS) during the video analysis of recordings at five specific times over 31 h of hospitalization. Results There was no difference in the mean CSS between cats listening to cat-specific music, classical music and control throughout the five evaluations. Cat-specific music had a higher percentage of positive social interactions than the other groups on the first evaluation (P <0.05). The average respiratory rate was significantly lower in the classical music group vs control on the fourth evaluation (P <0.05). Although statistically insignificant, the average respiratory rate decreased only in the classical music group during the five evaluations. Cortisol quantification did not seem to follow the CSS results. However, owing to the low and unrepresentative number of samples, it was not possible to perform statistical analysis on these results or a group sample comparison. Conclusions and relevance Both cat-specific music and classical music seem to have some benefit to hospitalized cats. The salivary cortisol analysis was not adequate nor useful to measure stress in hospitalized cats in our study.
... It could have been expected that further treatment differences in behaviour would be found, especially between slow tempo tracks, and the control. Many studies have shown that classical music exposure promotes behaviours suggestive of increased relaxation in shelter dogs (e.g., increased resting and reduced vocalisation) [9][10][11]. Bowman et al. [38] found that, when music was played, dogs spent less time standing and more time lying down (largely regardless of genre). ...
Article
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Confinement can be stressful for some dogs and this can lead to behavioural issues and poor welfare. A key component of the stress response is behavioural arousal, characterised by increased alertness and sensory sensitivity. This makes behavioural observations a useful tool to assess stress, as they provide insight into an animal’s internal state. Auditory enrichment has been shown to reduce arousal-related behaviour in dogs, but it is not clear if specific characteristics of a music track, such as tempo and/or pitch, produce these effects. The aim of this study was to compare behavioural responses of dogs to music tracks played with different characteristics (high pitch, low pitch, fast tempo, and slow tempo), as well as white noise and a control. Pitch and tempo modifications were applied to ten piano music songs and the six treatments (four different treatment-song combinations, white noise, and control) were presented daily, for ten minutes each, to ten dogs over ten days. Behavioural changes seemed to be driven by low-pitch tracks, which increased the level of alertness of the dogs. These findings could be related to the Morton’s motivations-structural rules: harsh, low frequency vocalisations signal aggressive motivations in mammals. Dogs may have perceived low-pitch tracks as more unsettling and were therefore more active and alert when listening to them.
... Podendo ser maior em casos onde há o uso de delineamentos com repetição no tempo, como o quadrado latino, por exemplo. Esses cães, na maioria das vezes, ficam alojados em ambientes restritos e estressantes, podendo comprometer seu bem-estar (Wells, 2003) e ocasionar comportamentos anormais, como as estereotipias (Broom e Fraser, 2010) ou indesejáveis, como a coprofagia (Boze, 2010;Meyer et al., 2014;Hart et al., 2018). ...
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Dogs experience a variety of stressors within the shelter that could negatively impact their welfare. The use of enrichment interventions that provide social interaction, either with a human or canine; object enrichment; and sensory stimulation (auditory, olfactory, or visual) is necessary for dogs living in animal shelters, along with the assessment of engagement and determination of benefits. There are a wide range of sampling and measurement techniques for monitoring enrichment usage and its behavioral effects, and such efforts are only worthwhile if the data being collected are used. Data‐informed decisions about which enrichment types are provided, on both the shelter‐wide and individual dog levels, must be consistently re‐evaluated based on the current population of dogs and can allow shelters to most usefully employ their resources and best serve the dogs in their care.
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Combined effects of music, environmental enrichment, and filial imprinting were tested on meat strain chicks (broilers) from 1 to 7 days old (Study I) or from one to 8 wk old (Study II). In six experiments conducted in two separate studies, chicks were exposed to a blue plastic box (30 × 30 × 38 cm) containing speakers from which red gloves were hung at the chicks’ eye level. Classical music was provided intermittently (1 h on/1 h off) from speakers located in the boxes. Approach response, feeding behavior, fear behavior, body weight, feed:gain ratio, and mortality were evaluated. Approach response tests (Study I) demonstrated that attachment to the imprinting enrichment and music (IEM) object was greater among treated chicks, whereas fear response tests indicated that IEM-treated chicks were also less fearful. Evaluation of feeding behavior (Study II) indicated that IEM chickens fed significantly more often than controls, particularly when the music was activated. Feed:gain ratios of the IEM-treated chicks in Study I were significantly improved (1.48 vs. 1.58) compared with those of controls for three of the four experiments. The exception occurred in Experiment 3, when chicks were exposed to heat stress, and nonsignificant differences for feed:gain ratios were observed. Body weight and mortality differences were not observed. Results of Study II, however, demonstrated significant influences of imprinting, enrichment, and music on body weight at 8 wk of age (2.63 vs. 2.57 kg), whereas differences in feed conversion and mortality were not significant.
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Environmental enrichment is a vague concept referring to improvements to captive animal environments. Some authors have applied the term to an environmental treatment itself, without any concrete evidence that the treatment represented an improvement for the animals. Others have used the term when the main beneficiaries may have been people rather than their captive animals. The criteria used to assess enrichment have also varied according to animal use (e.g. laboratory, farm or zoo animals). In this paper, environmental enrichment is defined as an improvement in the biological functioning of captive animals resulting from modifications to their environment. Evidence of improved biological functioning could include increased lifetime reproductive success, increased inclusive fitness or a correlate of these such as improved health. However, specifying an appropriate endpoint is problematic, especially for domestic animals. Potential methods of achieving enrichment that require further investigation include presenting food in ways that stimulate foraging behaviour and dividing enclosures into different functional areas. The quality of the external environment within the animals' sensory range also deserves greater attention. A common shortcoming of attempts at environmental enrichment is the provision of toys, music or other stimuli having little functional relevance to the animals. Failure to consider the effects of developmental factors and previous experience can also produce poor results. Environmental enrichment is constrained by financial costs and time demands on caretakers, and providing live prey to enrich the environment of predators raises ethical concerns. Future research on environmental enrichment would benefit from improved knowledge of the functions of behaviour performed in captivity and more rigorous experimental design.
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This field study investigated the extent to which stereotypically French and German music could influence supermarket customers' selections of French and German wines. Music with strong national associations should activate related knowledge and be linked with customers buying wine from the respective country. Over a 2-week period, French and German music was played on alternate days from an in-store display of French and German wines. French music led to French wines outselling German ones, whereas German music led to the opposite effect on sales of French wine. Responses to a questionnaire suggested that customers were unaware of these effects of music on their product choices. The results are discussed in terms of their theoretical implications for research on music and consumer behavior and their ethical implications for the use of in-store music. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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This study evaluated the effect of music on the mood of women during exercise. 16 middle-aged women, aged 49.9 +/- 7.53 yr., performed 60-min. bench stepping exercise while listening to Japanese traditional folk song, aerobic dance music, or nonmusic. The subjects reported significantly less fatigue with aerobic dance music and Japanese traditional folk song than with nonmusic. Aerobic dance music was associated with significantly more vigor and less confusion than nonmusic.
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This exploratory study evaluated the effects of ecologically relevant sounds on captive lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla), housed in the night quarters adjacent to their new exhibit at the San Diego Zoo. The behaviour of four western lowland gorillas was sampled using remote videotaping under each of four noise conditions associated with captive housing (quiet, ventilation on, bonobo vocalization playbacks and caretaker sounds) and each of two sound conditions (rain forest sounds ‘off’, rain forest sounds ‘on’). Significant differences in behaviour across noise conditions were found; these differences were ameliorated for infants, but only partially for adults by the rain forest sounds. The two adults responded to the rain forest sounds with increased agitation. The preliminary nature of these results is discussed.
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Because of very real practical constraints, conditions in animal shelters are often reminiscent of those in early primate deprivation studies. Dogs are frequently surrendered to shelters because of behavior problems, and aspects of the shelter environment may induce anomalous behavior, increasing the chances that adopted dogs will be returned to the shelters. Comparative psychologists, psychobiologists, and other behavioral scientists possess the knowledge and techniques to help shelters intervene in this cycle. Experience suggests human interaction and the application of basic conditioning procedures can reduce the impact of the shelter environment, and ease the transition into the adoptive home. A program developed to meet these goals is described. Shelters can provide opportunities both for the training of students in animal-related exercises and for limited applied research. Behavioral scientists stand in a unique position to help transform conditions in animal shelters to the benefit of all involved.
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This study examines the use of music as a strategy to decrease agitated behavior in cognitively impaired nursing home residents. Twenty agitated subjects, 68 to 84 years of age, were exposed to 15 minutes of calming music on two occasions. Agitated behavior scores were recorded before, during and after the musical intervention using the Agitated Behavior Scale. Results indicate that a statistically significant reduction in agitated behavior occurs both during (p. <0]) and after the musical intervention (p. <05). Calming music was shown to be an effective, nonpharmacologic strategy which nurses and other caregivers may use to reduce agitated behavior in the nursing home.
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The effect of environmental enrichment and exposure to humans during rearing on fear levels and trauma in adult caged hens was studied, Enriched birds were found to exhibit lower levels of potentially injurious fear reactions and incurred fewer knocks against the cage during depopulation than non-enriched birds. Environmental enrichment during rearing was identified as an important factor affecting fear levels and risk of injury in adult birds.
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Four experiments were performed to examine the influence of early environmental enrichment and regular gentle handling on the behaviour and fear responses of transported broilers. Experiment 1 showed that enriched/handled birds had longer tonic immobility durations after transportation than non-enriched/non-handled birds. Experiment 2 showed that enriched/handled birds were more active in their home pens both before and after transportation. In Experiment 3, handling and enrichment treatments were separated. Tonic immobility durations after transportation were least in enriched/non-handled birds and greatest in enriched/handled birds. Experiment 4 examined the influence of four different handling treatments on behaviour and tonic immobility response.
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The main objective of this experiment was to assess the effect of music on the voluntary approach of cows to an automatic milking system (AMS). A group of 19 mid- and late-lactating Holstein cows with 2 months prior experience of twice-daily milking in the AMS was used in this study. The cows were housed in a free stall barn with slatted floors and fed a complete mixed ration using an indoor feed bunk. They were also offered 1.5 kg per cow of grain pellets in the AMS during milking. Music was played during the milking period for 69 days prior to observation with amplifiers located within the milking compartments, approximately 1.2 m above the head of the milking cows and also on the long side of the barn. The sounds were activated at the start of each milking period and terminated after the last milking cow left the AMS. Behavioural observations were carried out during the afternoon milking for 20 days randomly fluctuating between days with music and days without music. The number of cows in the holding area was instantaneously recorded at 5 min before and 5 min after the onset of the milking period. On days with music, the number of cows in the holding area increased from 22.3 ± 15.1% to 45.0 ± 18.0% (P < 0.01). On control days without music, this difference was less pronounced, increasing from 27.1 ± 13.7% to 35.1 ± 15.4% (P = 0.150). Changes in the composition of behavioural states from 5 min before to 5 min after the onset of the milking period were significant on days with music (P < 0.001) but not on control days (P = 0.412). The results show a stimulatory effect of music, influencing behavioural readiness of cows to access the milking compartments of the AMS.
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The behavior of visitors towards dogs housed in rescue shelters has been subject to little research. This study explored the behavior of 76 visitors to a rescue shelter in Northern Ireland as they toured the dogs' kennels. The number of dogs that visitors stopped to look at, the nature of all interactions that visitors initiated with the dogs and the outcome of the visitors' tour of the shelter, were examined. The influence of the visitors' sex and the size of the group touring the kennels, on the visitors' behavior was also explored. On average, the visitors stopped to look at 29% of the total number of dogs available for purchase. Dogs housed in cages closest to the shelter entrance were more likely to attract attention from the visitors than those housed further away. When they stopped to look at a dog, visitors spent an average of 70 seconds in front of the animal's cage. Thirty-one of the visitors initiated an interaction with a dog, which lasted for an average of 20 seconds. Three visitors purchased a dog at the end of their tour of the shelter. Individuals who purchased a dog spent significantly more time standing in front of their future pet's cage, and engaged in more interactions with this animal, than dogs that they did not purchase. The size of the group touring the shelter was significantly related to the visitors' behavior. Individuals touring the shelter alone stopped in front of more dogs' cages, spent more time in front of the dogs' enclosures, initiated more interactions, and purchased more dogs, than those visiting in pairs or groups. The visitors' sex was unrelated to their behavior. The findings suggest that visitors to rescue shelters only show an interest in a small proportion of dogs available for purchase. Elucidating exactly what factors influence visitors' perceptions of, and behavior towards, sheltered dogs may further our understanding as to why so many animals are overlooked for purchase every year.
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This article extends research linking shopping behavior to environmental factors through changes in emotional states. With time fixed or variable during a simulated shopping experiment, shoppers were exposed to music varying by degree of familiarity. Afterward, subjects reported their perceptions of shopping duration, their emotional states, and their merchandise evaluations. Analyses revealed that individuals reported themselves as shopping longer when exposed to familiar music but actually shopped longer when exposed to unfamiliar music. Shorter actual shopping times in the familiar music condition were related to increased arousal. Longer perceived shopping times in the familiar music condition appear related to unmeasured cognitive factors. Although emotional states affected product evaluations, these effects were not directly related to the music manipulations.
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The effects of control over exposure to high intensity noise on plasma cortisol levels and social behaviors were examined in rhesus monkeys. There were four conditions: control over noise, loss of control over noise, no control over noise, and no noise. Plasma cortisol data indicated that animals with control over high intensity noise stimulation did not differ from animals exposed to no noise at all. Plasma cortisol levels were significantly elevated in animals with no control over high intensity noise and in animals experiencing a loss of control over noise. Animals which experienced loss of control over noise showed increased aggressive behavior while animals with no control over noise showed significantly less social contact than other animals.
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The response of four singly caged baboons to radio music was measured using behavioral and physiological indices. Heart rate and blood pressure, measured through a tether system, as well as behavior, were recorded during a two-week period in which radio music was available in half of the samples. The behavior of the subjects, as well as their blood pressure, did not vary in relation to radio music. Heart rate was significantly lower when the radio was on.
Article
The majority of sheltered dogs are overlooked for purchase because they are considered undesirable by potential buyers. Many factors may determine a dog's appeal, although of interest here are the dog's behaviour and cage environment which can influence its desirability. People prefer dogs which are at the front rather than the back of the cage, quiet as opposed to barking, and alert rather than non-alert. Potential buyers also prefer dogs which are held in complex as opposed to barren environments. This study examined the behaviour of sheltered dogs in response to environmental change, to determine whether it influenced dog behaviour in ways that could be perceived as desirable to potential dog buyers, and/or had any effect upon the incidence of dogs purchased from the shelter. One hundred and twenty dogs sheltered by the Ulster Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals were studied over a 4-h period. The dogs' position in the cage, vocalisation, and activity were investigated in response to increased human social stimulation, moving the dog's bed to the front of the cage, or suspending a toy from the front of the dog's cage. Social stimulation resulted in dogs spending more time at the front of the enclosure, more time standing, and slightly more time barking. Moving the bed to the front of the cage encouraged dogs to this position, but did not influence activity or vocalisation. Suspending a toy at the front of the pen exerted no effect on dog behaviour, although its presence in the pen may help to promote more positive perceptions of dog desirability. The incidence of dogs purchased from the rescue shelter increased whenever the dogs' cages were fitted with a bed at the front of the pen, whenever the dogs were subjected to increased regular human contact, and whenever a toy was placed at the front of the enclosure. Findings highlight the important role that cage environment can play in shaping the behaviour of sheltered dogs and influencing whether or not an animal will become purchased.