Investigating the Effects of Sleepover & Field Trip Programs on the Welfare of Shelter Dogs

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Recorded On: 07/09/2020

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It is likely that social isolation contributes to reduced welfare for dogs living in animal shelters. One type of intervention that addresses this concern, human interaction provided at the shelter, has been demonstrated to improve behavior and reduce physiological measures of stress for dogs awaiting adoption. In this webinar, researcher Lisa Gunter discuss research conducted at nine animal shelters across the United States in which she investigated the impacts of temporary fostering (sleepovers) and more recently, outings (field trips) away from the shelter, on shelter dog stress and activity levels. We’ll examine the particular effects of these programs and how they can be implemented in the shelter to positively impact the lives of dogs.


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This webinar recording is part of the new Innovation Bank. The Innovation Bank is a collection of bright ideas, innovative programs, and research that your organization can use for inspiration. Recorded sessions will be added to the series throughout Fall 2020.

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Lisa Gunter, PhD, CBCC-KA

Maddie’s Fund Research Fellow

Canine Science Collaboratory, Arizona State University

Lisa Gunter, PhD, MA, CBCC-KA is the Maddie's Fund Research Fellow at Arizona State University in the Department of Psychology and conducts her research in the Canine Science Collaboratory. Before beginning her graduate studies, she worked for nearly a decade with dogs in animal shelters and with dogs and their owners. During her research career, Lisa has investigated the breed labeling of shelter dogs, their breed heritage, housing and dog-to-dog interactions, temporary fostering, short-term outings, behavioral indicators of welfare, post-adoption interventions focused on owner retention - and more recently, fostering during the pandemic and safety net programs designed to keep people and their pets together.

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