Evaluating changes in salivary oxytocin and cortisol following positive reinforcement training in two adult male western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla)

Positive reinforcement training (PRT) is associated with increases in species-typical behavior and decreases in stereotypic and abnormal behavior in participating animals. Physiological changes following PRT, for example, increases in oxytocin (OXT) and/or decreases in cortisol (CORT), may facilitate these behavioral changes. This study evaluated salivary OXT and salivary CORT concentrations in two adult male western […]

Assessing and Enhancing the Welfare of Animals with Equivocal and Reliable Cues

The actions of human caretakers strongly influence animals living under human care. Here, we consider how intentional and unintentional signals provided by caretakers can inform our assessment of animals’ well-being as well as help to support it. Our aim is to assist in further developing techniques to learn animals’ affective state from their behavior and […]

Welfare of feral cats and potential influencing factors

The aim of the study was to investigate the habitat, characteristics, and the health status of cat colonies under supervision of a trap-neuter-return program, the distance of the cats maintained with respect to their caregivers as a measure of the animals’ fear of or confidence in humans, and relationships between these factors with regard to […]

Can we measure human-animal interactions in on-farm animal welfare assessment?: Some unresolved issues

Research has documented the effect that stockmanship has on animal welfare and shown that rough handling of animals can make them fearful of people. Interest has arisen in using measures of animals’ responses to people in on-farm welfare assessment. In this article, we discuss some of the unresolved issues that lead us to doubt whether […]

Attitudes to animals: Views in animal welfare

Attitudes to Animals provides a foundation that the reader can use to make ethical choices about animals. It will challenge readers to question their current views, attitudes and perspectives on animals and the nature of the human–animal relationship. Human perspectives on the human–animal relationships reflect what we have learned, together with spoken and unspoken attitudes […]

Positive interactions lead to lasting positive memories in horses, Equus caballus

Social relationships are important in social species. These relationships, based on repeated interactions, define each partner’s expectations during the following encounters. The creation of a relationship implies high social cognitive abilities which require that each partner is able to associate the positive or negative content of an interaction with a specific partner and to recall […]

Separation distress in artificially-reared lambs depends on human presence and the number of conspecifics

The way animals perceive partners, including humans, is yet relatively unknown. Research has shown that humans can provide social support or act as social substitute for domestic animals. Nonetheless, studies investigating the perception of humans by domestic animals in their social environment, i.e. alongside conspecifics, have been scarce. We investigated if humans could modulate lambs’ […]

A note on: On-farm testing of the behavioural response of group-housed calves towards humans; test–retest and inter-observer reliability and effect of familiarity of test person

In this study, a test of the behavioural response of group-housed calves towards humans has been evaluated regarding inter-observer and test–retest reliability as well as effect of familiarity of test person. On seven commercial farms, 186 group-housed calves at the age of 30–183 days were tested when fed concentrate in their manger. A test person […]

Validation of tests for on-farm assessment of the hen–human relationship in non-cage systems

The relationship of laying hens towards humans is an important aspect of animal welfare. Tests for assessing the hen–human relationship on farm should be validated prior to their use. In this paper, we investigated the validity of three recently developed tests assumed to measure the hen–human relationship in non-caged hens. The study was conducted in […]

A note on the relationship between the behavioural response of lactating sows to humans and the survival of their piglets

The objective of this study was to examine the relationships, based on unit averages, between the behavioural responses of lactating sows to humans and the performance of sows in 25 farrowing units at a large commercial farm. The behavioural responses of 25 sows in each farrowing unit were observed at 2–4 and 16–18 days of […]