Special Issue "Pet Behavioral Medicine"

A special issue of Animals (ISSN 2076-2615). This special issue belongs to the section "Companion Animals".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 October 2022 | Viewed by 1370

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Valarie V. Tynes
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Veterinary Services Specialist, Ceva Animal Health, Lenexa, KS, USA
Interests: feline house soiling; abnormal repetitive behaviors; behavior and welfare of swine; exotic pets and captive wildlife (including zoo animals)

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Unwanted or unacceptable behavior continues to be an important cause for the relinquishment of pets to animal shelters. It has even been suggested that the number of dogs exhibiting pathological behavior patterns is on the rise. Whether this represents a true increase in the numbers of dogs with problems or simply an increased awareness of the availability of help is unknown. It may also be due to the growing intolerance for euthanasia for behavior problems. Increasingly, organizations that accept unwanted animals, seek to rehabilitate and rehome every animal regardless of its behavior.

The etiology of most pet behavior problems is poorly understood and a subject of some debate.  Are some of them analogous or homologous to certain mental health conditions in humans or are they simply maladaptive behaviors that occur as a result of an animal attempting to adapt to an environment to which complete adaptation is not possible? In many other cases, pet behavior problems represent normal adaptive behaviors for the pet that the owner finds unacceptable or inconvenient. Owners are often blamed for "causing" their pet's behavior problems but what role do their actions really play? Minimal data exists to help us answer these questions.

We know even less about the role preventive approaches may play in the development of behavior problems. Poor socialization is often discussed as a predisposing factor for behavior problems, especially in dogs, but little data exists as to what actually constitutes "good socialization" and whether or not it can prevent any behavior problem. Could more behavior problems be prevented if pet owners were properly educated about appropriate pet choices, training and socialization of their pets? Without a thorough understanding of etiology, successful preventive strategies and what constitutes appropriate early intervention, these questions will remain unanswered.  Only sound research can provide us with the knowledge necessary to evaluate preventive strategies and treatment methodologies, ultimately helping us improve outcomes.

This special issue welcomes submissions including reviews and original research studies on all aspects of pet behavior medicine. We welcome research aimed at a better understanding of prevention, causes and mechanisms as well as management and treatment of these conditions in all pet species.

Dr. Valarie V. Tynes
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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  • canine behavior
  • feline behavior
  • anxiety
  • aggression
  • house soiling

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Case Distribution, Sources, and Breeds of Dogs Presenting to a Veterinary Behavior Clinic in the United States from 1997 to 2017
Animals 2022, 12(5), 576; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12050576 - 25 Feb 2022
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The purpose of this retrospective case study was to evaluate trends over time in case distribution, sources, and breeds of dogs presenting to the behavioral medicine service at a veterinary college referral hospital in the United States. For case distribution and sources, the [...] Read more.
The purpose of this retrospective case study was to evaluate trends over time in case distribution, sources, and breeds of dogs presenting to the behavioral medicine service at a veterinary college referral hospital in the United States. For case distribution and sources, the available records from the behavior service (n = 1923) from 1997 to 2017 were evaluated. Breeds of dogs presenting to all services (n = 51,052) were compared to behavior cases (n = 822) from 2007 to 2016. Over twenty years, 72.2% of dogs presented for aggression, 20.1% for anxieties/fears/phobias, and 7.4% for miscellaneous behavioral problems. Dogs acquired from breeders decreased and dogs from shelters, rescues, or adopted as a stray increased over twenty years (p < 0.0001). The Herding (p = 0.0124) and Terrier (p < 0.0001) groups were overrepresented for behavior problems as compared to all other services over ten years. Variations in terminology and diagnostic approach made comparisons with earlier studies difficult, which underscores a need for a more consistent methodology in veterinary behavioral medicine. Understanding trends in sources of dogs could direct resources aimed at guiding owners when acquiring a pet dog and preventing behavioral problems. Findings related to breeds could help guide research focused on the genetic contributions to behavior. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pet Behavioral Medicine)
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