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A One Health Research Framework for Animal-Assisted Interventions

By Karin Hediger, Andrea Meisser, Jakob Zinsstag

Category Journal Articles

Background: The integration of animals into healthcare, referred to as animal-assisted intervention, is a rapidly growing research field and was previously related to One Health. However, the assessment of synergistic effects of animal-assisted interventions (AAI) has been poorly addressed to date. Method: We discuss experiences in integrated human and animal assessments in AAI and provide a methodical framework for One Health approaches in AAI research. We propose theoretical consideration of an integrated human and animal health assessment, as well as the use of such an integrated approach in research. Based on the existing research, we argue that, for a deeper understanding of AAI mechanisms, parallel research designs are needed. Results and Conclusion: Our paper shows that a One Health study design is necessary to ensure that a tradeoff in health of animals is prevented and that an added value, or synergistic benefit, can be achieved on both sides during animal-assisted interventions.


Marcy Wilhelm-South

Purdue University

Date 2019
Publication Title International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume 16
Pages 6
Publisher MDPI
DOI 10.3390/ijerph16040640
Language English
Additional Language English
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Animal-assisted interventions
  2. Animal-assisted therapies
  3. Animal welfare
  4. Human-animal relationships
  5. One Health
  6. open access
  1. open access