Dog behavior «Dog behavior» is a four-monthly peer-reviewed international journal that focuses on all aspects of the behavior of dog and related canids, with a particular emphasis on clinical applications and research. en-US Dog behavior 2421-0684 A preliminary study on behavioral aspects in dogs with idiopathic epilepsy <p>Idiopathic epilepsy is considered the most common chronic neurological disease in dogs, and there is an increasing awareness regarding the behavioral impact of this disease on canine patients. This work aims at showing the potential differences in the behavioral profile and affective state of epileptic and not epileptic dogs, through the Canine Behavioral Assessment and Research Questionnaire (CBARQ) and the judgement bias test (JBT). Thirty dogs were involved: 15 with Idiopathic epilepsy (IE), 10 under treatment with phenobarbital, five not treated; 15 controls. For each dog, the owner completed the CBARQ. Twenty-seven dogs underwent training for the JBT. All data were statistically analyzed. Dogs with IE got a strong tendency for higher scores for excitability (U=70.0; median: 2.3 versus 1.8; p=0.077) and attention-seeking behaviors (U=66.0; median: 2.7 versus 2.2; p=0.053). Moreover, epileptic dogs were less likely to pass the training phase (58.3% versus 86.7%; X2=2.8; p=0.093), but those who passed it completed the JBT similarly to non-epileptic dogs (U=33.0; p=0.618). Although further studies are needed, epileptic dogs in this study showed differences in excitability, anxiety, and trainability compared to control dogs, suggesting a trend for behavioral aspects to be better explored. Being able to recognize and manage them could have a positive impact on the welfare of these animals.</p> Eleonora AMADEI Giovanna Marliani Pier Attilio Accorsi Chiara Mariti Antonio Di Loria Ludovica Pierantoni Copyright (c) 2023 2023-07-20 2023-07-20 8 3 10.4454/db.v8i3.160 Can environmental temperature influence shelter dogs’ behaviour? A pilot study <p>Many dogs world-wide spend a large part of their lives in rescue shelters, and many studies have investigated their behaviour, with the primary aim of improving their quality of life. There are many factors which can affect or influence, the results of these studies. Some of these may be controlled by human intervention such as: environmental enrichment, feeding procedures, and shelter management. Others are independent from human influence such as environmental temperature, humidity, or meteorological phenomena. Therefore, in the present pilot study, we investigated whether ambient temperature and relative humidity could affect the behaviour of shelter dogs. Twenty-one dogs housed in a North Italian rescue shelter were observed using an instantaneous focal animal rule every 15 seconds for 15 minutes, repeated on four days at intervals of at least 5 days. Official data regarding temperature and humidity were obtained from the Veneto Regional Agency for Environmental Prevention and Protection. Generalised Estimated Equations were run for inactivity, locomotion, vocalisation, exploration, maintenance behaviours, and resting. The dogs’ gender, (estimated) age, duration at the shelter, temperature, and relative humidity were included in the model as possible predictive factors. Male dogs were recorded as vocalising more often than female dogs (p=0.011). Dogs who had been longer than 5 years in the shelter were recorded exploring more often than dogs who had been in the shelter less than 5 years (p=0.004), and dogs were recorded exploring less often in higher environmental temperatures (p=0.004). No other significant effects were found. Given the importance of exploratory behaviour in monitoring the effects of environmental enrichment programs, the results of the present study suggest the importance of controlling for environmental temperature when studying environmental exploration in shelter dogs.</p> Simona Normando Elizabeth Ann Walsh Lieve Lucia Meers Laura Contalbrigo Copyright (c) 2023 2023-07-20 2023-07-20 8 3 10.4454/db.v8i3.159 The benefits of dog ownership on people as an undervalued resource in urban environments <p>In countries with a developed economy, life confined in built environment has generated a new need for contact with nature and non-human beings. Nowadays, there are many studies that investigate the possible outcomes of the human-animal bond on people’s health. Nevertheless, few studies have been carried out to assess the benefits of human-animal bond as an innovative resource to enhance people’s health and wellbeing. In this regard, the In-Habit (INclusive Health And wellBeing In small and medium size ciTies) project is a good example of a framework that proposes an innovative approach to the topic of human-animal interactions in the urban environment. The aim of this scoping review was to summarize and discuss the literature dealing with beneficial effects of dog ownership while introducing the INHABIT project as a mean to promote the integration of pets into society through the implementation of adequate pet policies based on multidisciplinary approaches like “One health”. A literature search was conducted in June-September 2021, and articles were selected using a 4-step screening process that allowed us to include 51 articles in the review. According to some of these studies, dog ownership seemed to have a positive effect on the owner’s cardiovascular activity, blood pressure and overall levels of physical activity. Other benefits are related to mental health, like the reduction of depression and loneliness in various categories of people.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Carmen Borrelli Giulia Granai Francesco Paolo Di Iacovo Giacomo Riggio Masimo Rovai Roberta Moruzzo Francesco Riccioli Carlo Bibbiani Angelo Gazzano Chiara Mariti Copyright (c) 2023 2023-07-20 2023-07-20 8 3 10.4454/db.v8i3.163