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Effect of cooperative care training on physiological parameters and compliance in dogs undergoing a veterinary examination – A pilot study

By Lukas Wess, Astrid Böhm, Miriam Schützinger, Stefanie Riemer, Jason R. Yee, Nadja Affenzeller, Christine Arhant

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Abstract

One way to reduce fear and lack of compliance during veterinary procedures is ‘cooperative care training’, training animals to voluntarily participate in husbandry and medical care. Here we assessed the effects of cooperative care training on heart rate (HR), heart rate variability (HRV), tympanic membrane temperature (TMT) and compliance (i.e., all steps of the examination completed) of dogs during a veterinary examination. A blinded controlled trial with 47 dogs (training group (TG): 26; control group (CG): 21) was carried out. Forty dogs completed the study (TG: 22, CG:18). Dogs and their owners took part in a standardized veterinary visit twice (visit interval: 140 ± 23 days). In between, the TG took part in cooperative care training (10 ± 2 group training sessions, additional training at home). Linear mixed models were calculated (fixed effects HR/HRV: group* visit* period, TMT: group* visit; random effect: dogID). Compliance (completed steps of exam) was analyzed using McNemar tests. HR/HRV was higher/lower during the veterinary examination compared to the waiting room (period: p 

Publication Title Applied Animal Behaviour Science
Volume 250
Pages 105615
ISBN/ISSN 0168-1591
DOI 10.1016/j.applanim.2022.105615
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Tags
  1. Animal welfare
  2. Dogs
  3. Handling
  4. Heart rate
  5. Husbandry
  6. temperatures