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  1. Influences on the avoidance and approach behaviour of dairy goats towards an unfamiliar human - an on-farm study

    Contributor(s):: Mersmann, D., Schmied-Wagner, C., Nordmann, E., Graml, C., Waiblinger, S.

    The human-animal relationship (HAR) is an important factor for successful animal husbandry and animal welfare. Thus, the HAR is included in on-farm assessments to evaluate overall welfare. For dairy goats, validated tests to assess the HAR are lacking. The aim of the present study was to evaluate...

  2. Exploring children's perspectives on the welfare needs of pet animals

    Contributor(s):: Muldoon, J. C., Williams, J. M., Lawrence, A.

    Children are increasingly viewed as important recipients of educational interventions to improve animal welfare, yet research examining their perspectives is lacking, particularly within the UK. Helping children to care appropriately for animals depends, not least, on an ability to understand the...

  3. Empathy towards animals and belief in animal-human-continuity in Italian veterinary students

    Contributor(s):: Colombo, E. S., Pelosi, A., Prato-Previde, E.

    Empathy towards animals and beliefs in animal-human continuity appear to play an important role in shaping the human-animal relationship and in determining the way animals are treated and cared for. Veterinary medicine plays a central role in animal welfare and has been recognised as a highly...

  4. On-farm qualitative behaviour assessment in sheep: repeated measurements across time, and association with physical indicators of flock health and welfare

    Contributor(s):: Phythian, C. J., Michalopoulou, E., Cripps, P. J., Duncan, J. S., Wemelsfelder, F.

    Qualitative Behavioural Assessment (QBA) is a 'whole-animal' methodology that assesses the expressive qualities of animal behaviour using terms such as 'tense', 'relaxed', 'anxious', and 'content'. The reliability and validity of QBA as an indicator for on-farm welfare assessment in pigs, cattle,...

  5. Reconsidering coprophagy as an indicator of negative welfare for captive chimpanzees

    Contributor(s):: Hopper, L. M., Freeman, H. D., Ross, S. R.

    For captive chimpanzees, 'abnormal' behaviours include behaviours observed only in captivity (i.e. species-atypical behaviours) and those that are performed at higher rates in captivity compared to in the wild. Both types are used as metrics for evaluating captive primates' welfare. However,...

  6. Are observer ratings influenced by prescription? A comparison of Free Choice Profiling and Fixed List methods of Qualitative Behavioural Assessment

    Contributor(s):: Clarke, T., Pluske, J. R., Fleming, P. A.

    Qualitative methods of behavioural assessment use observer rating scales to score the overall demeanour or body language of animals. Establishing the reliability of such holistic approaches requires test and validation of the methods used. Here, we compare two methodologies used in Qualitative...

  7. Can automated measures of lying time help assess lameness and leg lesions on tie-stall dairy farms?

    Contributor(s):: Charlton, G. L., Bouffard, V., Gibbons, J., Vasseur, E., Haley, D. B., Pellerin, D., Rushen, J., Passille, A. M. de

    The time that dairy cows spend lying down is an important measure of their comfort and lameness and injuries to hocks and knees are associated with alterations in lying time. We examined whether automated measures of lying time could identify cows and farms with problems of lameness or leg...

  8. Effects of stereotypic behaviour and chronic mild stress on judgement bias in laboratory mice

    Contributor(s):: Novak, J., Stojanovski, K., Melotti, L., Reichlin, T., Palme, R., Wurbel, H.

    Cognitive processes are influenced by underlying affective states, and tests of cognitive bias have recently been developed to assess the valence of affective states in animals. These tests are based on the fact that individuals in a negative affective state interpret ambiguous stimuli more...

  9. Use of Qualitative Behaviour Assessment as an indicator of welfare in donkeys

    Contributor(s):: Minero, M., Costa, E. dalla, Dai, F., Murray, L. A. M., Canali, E., Wemelsfelder, F.

    One of the objectives of the Animal Welfare Indicators project was to develop animal-based indicators to assess donkey welfare, including their emotional state. This study aimed to develop a fixed rating scale of Qualitative Behaviour Assessment (QBA) for donkeys, to evaluate the inter-observer...

  10. Association between personality and stereotypic behaviours in the African striped mouse Rhabdomys dilectus

    Contributor(s):: Joshi, S., Pillay, N.

    Stereotypic behaviours, which are abnormal, repetitive and invariant behaviours caused by frustration and/or central nervous system dysfunction, develop as a result of sub-optimal captive conditions that provide inadequate motor and sensory stimulation. However, not all individuals housed under...

  11. Behavioural response of pure Ankole and crossbred (Ankole * Holstein) cows to seasonal pasture variations in south-western Uganda

    Contributor(s):: Idibu, J., Kabi, F., Mpairwe, D.

    This study evaluated the effects of season and pasture species on variations in sward composition, pasture quantity (plant-height and biomass) and quality [crude protein (CP), neutral detergent fibre (NDF) and in vitro organic matter digestibility (IVOMD)]. Behavioural responses of a group of 10...

  12. Individual hunting behaviour and prey specialisation in the house cat Felis catus: implications for conservation and management

    Contributor(s):: Dickman, C. R., Newsome, T. M.

    Predators are often classed as prey specialists if they eat a narrow range of prey types, or as generalists if they hunt multiple prey types. Yet, individual predators often exhibit sex, size, age or personality-related differences in their diets that may alter the impacts of predation on...

  13. Neonatal piglets are able to differentiate more productive from less productive teats

    Contributor(s):: Devillers, N., Giraud, D., Farmer, C.

    A previously-validated method to induce variation in milk production between teats of the same udder that is not related to the ante-posterior location of the teat was used. In the first lactation, over half of the sows' teats (teats 1, 2, 5, 6, and 7 from 1 side of the udder, and teats 3, 4, and...

  14. Quantification of activity in domestic cats ( Felis catus) by accelerometry

    Contributor(s):: Andrews, C. J., Potter, M. A., Thomas, D. G.

    Accelerometers (Actical 'Mini Mitter' (MMA)) have been used to assess the activity of domestic cats ( Felis catus), and have been validated against measures of observed activity in this species; however, previous validation trials have had very small sample sizes and have not considered...

  15. Evidence for litter differences in play behaviour in pre-weaned pigs

    Contributor(s):: Brown, S. M., Klaffenbock, M., Nevison, I. M., Lawrence, A. B.

    The aim of this study was to analyse spontaneous play behaviour in litters of domestic pigs ( Sus scrofa) for sources of variation at individual and litter levels and to relate variation in play to measures of pre and postnatal development. Seven litters of commercially bred piglets ( n=70) were...

  16. Behaviour of pre-pubertal gilts and its relationship to farrowing behaviour in conventional farrowing crates and loose-housed pens

    Contributor(s):: Ison, S. H., Wood, C. M., Baxter, E. M.

    Individual variation in the reproductive performance of sows has the potential for greater negative impacts in loose-farrowing systems. Therefore, the ability to select gilts that will perform well would be a major advantage. This study investigated the behaviour of gilts during pre-pubertal...

  17. Calf mortality in semi-domestic reindeer ( Rangifer tarandus) in a Scottish herd: the impact of maternal age and individual differences between cow

    Contributor(s):: Jorgensen, M. W., Jarvis, S., Brewer, M. J., Goddard, P. J.

    High calf mortality rate is a significant problem facing semi-domestic reindeer ( Rangifer tarandus) production around the world. Mortality rates, commonly due to predation, can range from 5 to 70%, which constitutes a great welfare concern. This study examined the influence of quantifiable...

  18. Consistent individual differences in the behavioural responsiveness of adult male cuttlefish ( Sepia officinalis)

    Contributor(s):: Carere, C., Grignani, G., Bonanni, R., Gala, M. della, Carlini, A., Angeletti, D., Cimmaruta, R., Nascetti, G., Mather, J. A.

    Consistent individual differences in clusters of behaviour (animal personalities) are being increasingly recognized by researchers of different disciplines, but studies on invertebrates are still scanty. In order to test for the presence of personality-like individual profiles we assessed the...

  19. Dominance rank is associated with body condition in outdoor-living domestic horses ( Equus caballus)

    Contributor(s):: Giles, S. L., Nicol, C. J., Harris, P. A., Rands, S. A.

    The aim of our study was to explore the association between dominance rank and body condition in outdoor group-living domestic horses, Equus caballus. Social interactions were recorded using a video camera during a feeding test, applied to 203 horses in 42 herds. Dominance rank was assigned to...

  20. Identifying environmental and management factors that may be associated with the quality of life of kennelled dogs ( Canis familiaris)

    Contributor(s):: Kiddie, J., Collins, L.

    This paper describes the use of a validated quality of life assessment tool (described elsewhere) to identify environmental and management factors that may affect quality of life in dogs kennelled in rehoming centres. Dogs were allocated to one of the four treatment groups, all of which had a...