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  1. The Relationship Between Pet Attachment, Life Satisfaction, and Perceived Stress: Results from a South African Online Survey

    Contributor(s):: Roux, Marieanna C. le, Wright, Simonne

    Pets are an important part of many pet owners’ lives, yet very little is known about this complex relationship within a South African context. Most of the research on pet attachment and pet ownership stems from developed countries such as the USA. The present study used an online survey to...

  2. Effects of Human–Dog Interactions on Salivary Oxytocin Concentrations and Heart Rate Variability: A Four-Condition Cross-Over Trial

    Contributor(s):: Powell, Lauren, Edwards, Kate M., Michael, Scott, McGreevy, Paul, Bauman, Adrian, Guastella, Adam J., Drayton, Bradley, Stamatakis, Emmanuel

    Dog ownership is often advocated for its potential benefits to human health, with changes to oxytocin and autonomic nervous system (ANS) activity proposed as possible underlying mechanisms. The aims of the current study were to a) examine the effect of two common types of human–dog interactions...

  3. Pet Attachment in the Context of Family Conflict

    Contributor(s):: Applebaum, Jennifer W., Zsembik, Barbara A.

    Previous research shows that companion animals can have a positive effect on their owner’s health and may also serve as a buffer to stress. Despite this, few studies have investigated the role of the pet in adverse or tumultuous family circumstances. In this study, we explored whether reported...

  4. The State of Research on Human–Animal Relations: Implications for Human Health

    Contributor(s):: Wells, Deborah L.

    Since the late 1970s, scientific evidence has accumulated showing that pet ownership can have positive effects on people’s physical and mental wellbeing. This paper reviews the current state of affairs regarding the relationship between companion animals and human health, focusing on both the...

  5. Psychological Mechanisms Predicting Wellbeing in Pet Owners: Rogers’ Core Conditions versus Bowlby’s Attachment

    Contributor(s):: Teo, Jillian Terese, Thomas, Susan J.

    While pet ownership may confer physical and psychological health benefits, existing research presents inconsistent findings, and the psychological mechanisms through which health benefits might be conferred are unknown. Exploring human–pet relationships from the perspectives of Bowlby’s...

  6. Do Men Underreport and Mask Their Emotional Attachment to Animal Companions? The Influence of Precarious Masculinity on Men’s Bonds with Their Dogs

    Contributor(s):: Blazina, Chris, Kogan, Lori

    Males’ underreporting of psychological issues, physical symptoms, and personal information is commonplace both in medical and psychological settings in North America. One explanation for this occurrence is men that endorse traditional forms of masculine gender roles underreport or mask their...

  7. “You Can’t Really Hug a Tiger”: Zookeepers and Their Bonds with Animals

    Contributor(s):: Birke, Lynda, Hosey, Geoff, Melfi, Vicky

    Zookeepers often report strong attachment (bonds) with animals in their care. This paper reports a qualitative study of how keepers perceived these animals; the aim was to explore keepers’ experiences of bonding and how these related to the work done in zoos. Respondents were drawn from a large...

  8. The Association of Pet Ownership and Attachment with Perceived Stress among Chinese Adults

    Contributor(s):: Wu, Cynthia Sau Ting, Wong, Rosa Sze Man, Chu, Wing Hin

    Pet ownership is associated with both positive and negative emotions. Given that not everyone responds to pet care in a stressful way, perceptions of companion animals may play a role in how owners respond to them. In this study, we explored the relationship between pet ownership and perceived...

  9. Children Love Their Pets: Do Relationships between Children and Pets Co-vary with Taxonomic Order, Gender, and Age?

    Contributor(s):: Hirschenhauser, Katharina, Meichel, Yasmine, Schmalzer, Sabrina, Beetz, Andrea M.

    Generally, children love their pets. However, a deeper insight into the beneficial effects of pets on the physical, psychological, and social wellbeing and development of children is needed. This study investigated whether children have more intense relationships with animals which are...

  10. A Survey of Companion-Animal Owners Affected by the East Japan Great Earthquake in Iwate and Fukushima Prefectures, Japan

    Contributor(s):: Yamazaki, Sakiko

    The unprecedented East Japan Great Earthquake in March 2011 impacted many humans as well as animals. To date, only national surveys that do not necessarily focus on the heavily impacted areas have been administered, and there is a lack of data on the situation for companion animals and their...

  11. Children with Avoidant or Disorganized Attachment Relate Differently to a Dog and to Humans During a Socially Stressful Situation

    Contributor(s):: Wedl, Manuela, Kotrschal, Kurt, Julius, Henri, Beetz, Andrea

    Human attachment representations are shaped in interaction with the primary caregiver and are generally transferred to further bonding/ social partners later in life. According to previous evidence, primary attachment representations acquired with humans do not seem to be transferred to companion...

  12. Intraspecific attachment in adult domestic dogs (Canis familiaris): Preliminary results

    Contributor(s):: Mariti, Chiara, Carlone, Beatrice, Ricci, Eva, Sighieri, Claudio, Gazzano, Angelo

    Canis familiaris is a highly social species. Among the social relationships between two individuals, a particular case is represented by attachment bonds. The aim of the current study was to assess whether the bond between adult cohabitant dogs may be regarded as attachment. Twenty-two couples of...

  13. Teenage dogs? Evidence for adolescent-phase conflict behaviour and an association between attachment to humans and pubertal timing in the domestic dog

    Contributor(s):: Asher, L., England, G. C. W., Sommerville, R., Harvey, N. D.

    The relationship between parent and child changes around adolescence, with children believed to have: (i) an earlier puberty if they have less secure attachments to their carer; (ii) a phase of increased conflict behaviour toward their carer; and (iii) heightened conflict behaviour when carer...

  14. Attachment security in companion dogs: adaptation of Ainsworth's strange situation and classification procedures to dogs and their human caregivers

    Contributor(s):: Solomon, J., Beetz, A., Schoberl, I., Gee, N., Kotrschal, K.

    This exploratory study describes the development of a classification system for dogs' attachment security to caregivers that adheres closely to Ainsworth's seminal methodology. Fifty-nine adult dogs and caregivers participated in a mildly threatening laboratory encounter with a stranger (TS) and...

  15. Adult separation anxiety disorder: The human-animal bond

    Contributor(s):: Dowsett, E., Delfabbro, P., Chur-Hansen, A.

    BACKGROUND: The introduction of an adult onset Separation Anxiety Disorder in the DSM-V recognises that separation anxiety can occur at any stage across the lifespan. In this paper, we examine whether adult separation anxiety, which is known to occur when people are apart from other people close...

  16. Drawing parallels in human-other interactions: a trans-disciplinary approach to developing human-robot interaction methodologies

    Contributor(s):: Collins, E. C.

  17. Does attachment security to a human handler influence the behavior of dogs who engage in animal assisted activities?

    Contributor(s):: Wanser, Shelby H., Udell, Monique A. R.

    Pet and working dogs raised with humans are known to form attachments to their caregivers and other humans with whom they have a stable relationship. Attachment style varies across dog-human dyads, with securely attached dogs exhibiting the secure base effect, an ability to find comfort in the...

  18. Re-direction of maternal behaviour in dairy cows

    Contributor(s):: Mandel, Roi, Nicol, Christine J.

    In the milk producing industry, most aspects of maternal behaviour are discouraged, but milk production is actively maintained in the absence of the calf. The process of milk let down, is mediated, at least partly, by oxytocin, which has been shown to play a central role in facilitating maternal...

  19. Intraspecific relationships in adult domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) living in the same household: A comparison of the relationship with the mother and an unrelated older female dog

    Contributor(s):: Mariti, Chiara, Carlone, Beatrice, Votta, Emilia, Ricci, Eva, Sighieri, Claudio, Gazzano, Angelo

    There is scientific evidence that adult dogs establish attachment bonds towards human beings. Attachment as behavioural system exists in the puppy-mother relationship, but adult dogs tested with the Ainsworth Strange Situation Test (ASST) have been found to show a preference for the stranger over...

  20. Preference for the mother does not last long after weaning at 3 months of age in sheep

    Contributor(s):: Ungerfeld, Rodolfo, Freitas-de-Melo, Aline, Nowak, Raymond, Lévy, Frederic

    Ewes develop a strong selective bond with their offspring, which is set immediately after lambing and maintained until weaning, which in domestic sheep occurs when lambs are 4-5 months old. However, in productive systems lambs are weaned earlier, when they are 2-5 months old. The aim of this...