Monday, September 22, 2014

Do dogs like to be hugged, and separation distress in dogs

No separation distress here? A golden retriever chillaxes.
Why are relationships with animals different? According to one paper I read on the weekend, “the fact that pets are not human confers certain advantages; the relationships are less subject to provider burnout or to fluctuations, and they do not impose a strain or cause concern about continuing stability” (McNicholas et al 2005).

But that doesn’t mean that your pet will appreciate being cuddled all day. SAT reader Mick sent this link about why (some) dogs don’t like to be hugged and how we can tell. Click here to read on.

Speaking of hugging and attachment, Diane Van Rooy is recruiting golden retrievers and Labradors in her study on separation distress.

Do you think your dog might be eligible? Here is Dr Rooy’s blurb:
I am a veterinarian and, together with Professor Claire Wade from the Veterinary Medical and Behavioural Genetics group at the University of Sydney, I am conducting a PhD research project on the genetics of separation-related distress in dogs. I need the help of owners throughout Australia to recruit suitable candidates for my project. Although this disorder can occur in any breed, I am initially focussing on Labradors and golden retrievers.
If you have a lab or a goldie or know someone who does, click here. You can also read out interview with Diane here.

SAT reader Kerry sent this link featuring some incredible “Big Face” animal tee shirts by Mountain. If you’d like to wear a giant Rottweiler/guinea pig/pomerarian kitten face down the street, look no further than here.

McNicholas J, Gilbey A, Rennie A, Ahmedzai S, Dono J & Ormerod E (2005) Pet ownership and human health: a brief review of evidence and issues. British Medical Journal 331:1252-1254.