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  1. Rat Tickling in Pet Stores: Effects on Employees, Customers, and New Owners

    Contributor(s):: LaFollette, Megan R., Cloutier, Sylvie, Gaskill, Brianna N., O’Haire, Marguerite E.

    Rat tickling is a technique used by humans with rats to mimic rough-and-tumble play, improve welfare, and reduce fear. Anecdotal information suggests that rat tickling is also beneficial for humans, yet this assertion has not been empirically validated. We hypothesized that rat tickling would be...

  2. A review of behavioural methods to study emotion and mood in pigs, Sus scrofa

    Contributor(s):: Murphy, Eimear, Nordquist, Rebecca E., van der Staay, Franz Josef

    The study of emotions in animals is of increasing importance to a number of disciplines such as animal welfare science and affective neuroscience. Pigs are a common farm animal species, most often reared in intensive systems. Moreover, they are increasingly being used in laboratories. To...

  3. Rearing substrate and space allowance influences locomotor play behaviour of dairy calves in an arena test

    Contributor(s):: Sutherland, Mhairi A., Worth, Gemma M., Schütz, Karin E., Stewart, Mairi

    The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of rearing substrate and space allowance in the home environment on the motivation of dairy calves to perform locomotor play in an arena test. At 1wk of age, 72 calves were moved into one of 18 experimental pens (n=4 calves/pen) where they...

  4. Playful handling as social enrichment for individually- and group-housed laboratory rats

    Contributor(s):: Cloutier, Sylvie, Baker, Chelsea, Wahl, Kim, Panksepp, Jaak, Newberry, Ruth C.

    Social housing is recommended for laboratory rats because they are highly social mammals but research constraints or medical issues often demand individual housing and, when social housing is practiced, it typically involves housing with only one or two conspecifics. We hypothesized that playful...

  5. Play behavior as an indicator of animal welfare: Disbudding in dairy calves

    Contributor(s):: Mintline, Erin M., Stewart, Mairi, Rogers, Andrea R., Cox, Neil R., Verkerk, Gwyneth A., Stookey, Joseph M., Webster, James R., Tucker, Cassandra B.

    Play behavior may be reduced during negative experiences (e.g. pain) and serve as an indicator of animal welfare. To test this, the effects of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) and a local anesthetic (LA) on dairy calf play behavior and wound sensitivity of calves after hot-iron...

  6. Investigating the motivation to play in lambs

    Contributor(s):: Chapagain, Durga, Uvnäs-Moberg, Kerstin, Lidfors, Lena M.

    The aim of this study was to identify behaviours and ear postures linked to the appetitive, consummatory and post-consummatory motivational phases of play in male lambs, and to evaluate how cortisol was affected by play. Ten pairs of male lambs, Ovis aries were observed in a play arena three...

  7. Environmental enrichment and cognitive complexity in reptiles and amphibians: Concepts, review, and implications for captive populations

    Contributor(s):: Burghardt, Gordon M.

    Reptiles and amphibians have been neglected in research on cognition, emotions, sociality, need for enriched and stimulating environments, and other topics that have been greatly emphasized in work on mammals and birds. This is also evident in the historic lack of enriching captive environments...

  8. Two's company? Solitary vixens’ motivations for seeking social contact

    Contributor(s):: Hovland, Anne Lene, Akre, Anne Kathrine, Flø, Andreas, Bakken, Morten, Koistinen, Tarja, Mason, Georgia J.

    The flexible social organisation in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) suggests that social contact could enrich the housing of silver fox vixens (a selected line of red foxes) farmed for their fur. To investigate their social motivation, adult vixens housed in an operant apparatus were allowed to pull a...

  9. Factors affecting dog–dog interactions on walks with their owners

    Contributor(s):: Řezáč, Petr, Viziová, Petra, Dobešová, Michaela, Havlíček, Zdeněk, Pospíšilová, Dagmar

    Little is known about factors influencing dyadic interactions between dogs in public places. This paper reports on the effect of dog age, gender and size, human gender and the use of a leash on the occurrence of body sniffing, scent-marking, playing games, showing a threat and biting in canine...

  10. The early behaviour of cow and calf in an individual calving pen

    Contributor(s):: Jensen, Margit Bak

    The aim was to investigate the early behaviour in dairy cows and their calves. Thirty-eight multiparous Danish Holstein Frisian cows and their calves were housed in individual calving pens during the first twelve days post-partum and their behaviour was observed during 24h on days 3, 7 and 11....

  11. Automated measurement of acceleration can detect effects of age, dehorning and weaning on locomotor play of calves

    Contributor(s):: Rushen, Jeffrey, de Passillé, Anne Marie

    Play may be a behavioural indicator of positive emotions in young animals, but in calves spontaneous play is time consuming to record. We examined whether measures of acceleration of calves in a large enclosure could detect effects on play running of age, dehorning and weaning off milk. Holstein...

  12. Assessing calf play behavior in an arena test

    Contributor(s):: Mintline, Erin M., Wood, Sara L., de Passillé, Anne Marie, Rushen, Jeffrey, Tucker, Cassandra B.

    The use of play as an indicator of animal welfare shows promise, and an arena test is one method used to assess how different procedures or housing conditions affect calves’ motivation to perform locomotor play. However, it is unclear if this test reflects play in the home pen. In addition, the...

  13. Evaluating a supported nature play programme, parents’ perspectives

    Contributor(s):: Ward, Tanya, Goldingay, Sophie, Parson, Judi

  14. Pre-weaning environmental enrichment increases piglets’ object play behaviour on a large scale commercial pig farm

    Contributor(s):: Yang, Chung-Hsuan, Ko, Heng-Lun, Salazar, Laura C., Llonch, Lourdes, Manteca, Xavier, Camerlink, Irene, Llonch, Pol

    Environmental enrichment is a legal requirement for European pig farms. The suitability of enrichment materials for neonatal pigs is understudied and has not been tested in commercial settings. This study investigates the effect of hanging objects and substrate as two enrichment strategies...

  15. Why do dogs play? Function and welfare implications of play in the domestic dog

    Contributor(s):: Sommerville, Rebecca, O’Connor, Emily A., Asher, Lucy

    Play is an enigmatic behaviour, the function of which is still debated, despite more than a century of research. We discuss the evolutionary function of play behaviour, focusing on the domestic dog (Canis familiaris), a unique species due to its past domestication and current cohabitation with...

  16. Social behaviour of endangered European mink (Mustela lutreola) litters in captivity

    Contributor(s):: Kiik, Kairi, Maran, Tiit, Kneidinger, Nadja, Tammaru, Toomas

    In litter-bearing mammals, the environment and social interactions during early life often have a substantial effect on future behaviour of the animal. Most information though derives from lab rodents, pets or farm animals while comparable data are scarce for non-domesticated species, and...

  17. Adult-adult social play in captive chimpanzees: Is it indicative of positive animal welfare?

    Contributor(s):: Yamanashi, Yumi, Nogami, Etsuko, Teramoto, Migaku, Morimura, Naruki, Hirata, Satoshi

    Play is sometimes considered as an indicator of positive animal welfare. However, it is not yet sufficiently understood whether or not social play among adults can be considered as such an indicator because it is rare in adult animals. This study investigates the factors that influence social...

  18. Tail and ear movements as possible indicators of emotions in pigs

    Contributor(s):: Marcet Rius, Míriam, Pageat, Patrick, Bienboire-Frosini, Cécile, Teruel, Eva, Monneret, Philippe, Leclercq, Julien, Lafont-Lecuelle, Céline, Cozzi, Alessandro

    A better understanding of animal emotions is an important goal in disciplines ranging from neuroscience to animal welfare science, but few reliable tools exist for measuring these emotions. Play behaviour is generally recognized as a trigger of positive emotions in mammals, and previous studies...

  19. Selection of putative indicators of positive emotions triggered by object and social play in mini-pigs

    Contributor(s):: Marcet Rius, Míriam, Cozzi, Alessandro, Bienboire-Frosini, Cécile, Teruel, Eva, Chabaud, Camille, Monneret, Philippe, Leclercq, Julien, Lafont-Lecuelle, Céline, Pageat, Patrick

    Positive welfare is more than the absence of negative experiences. Nevertheless, there are few feasible animal-based measures for positive welfare. This study aimed to investigate whether object and social play behaviours in pigs, which is believed to trigger positive emotions, is linked to...

  20. A happier rat pack: The impacts of tickling pet store rats on human-animal interactions and rat welfare

    Contributor(s):: LaFollette, Megan R., O’Haire, Marguerite E., Cloutier, Sylvie, Gaskill, Brianna N.

    Rats find initial interactions with humans frightening, which can lead to negative affect, and poor welfare. A handling technique called "tickling", which mimics rat rough-and-tumble play, can be used to reduce these negative effects. When tickled, rats produce 50 kilohertz (kHz) ultrasonic...