Project properties

Title Missing the big picture: how cognitive processes influence emotions in dogs
Group Behavioural Ecology
Project type thesis
Credits 24-36
Supervisor(s) Else Verbeek, Bonne Beerda
Examiner(s) Bonne Beerda
Contact info elseverbeek@slu.se, bonne.beerda@wur.nl
Begin date 2020/01/01
End date 2022/01/01
Description Animals suffer when they are in a negative emotional state. However, measuring emotions in animals is difficult because they cannot tell us how they feel. Developing better ways to assess animal emotions could help us to improve management practices and interventions and so improve the welfare of dogs. In this study, we are interested in finding better ways to measure emotions in dogs, as well as understanding the cognitive processes underpinning different emotions.
We are looking for an independent and motivated student who likes to work with dogs. The thesis work will require hands-on work with the dogs. For example, the student may train the dogs to respond to different visual cues and so �ask� the dog how it feels, assess the personality of the dog, or apply other behavioural tests in a standardized setting.
The main experiment will take place in June/July 2020 in Uppsala, Sweden. Uppsala is a very nice town with many (international) students, it�s close to many lakes and forests and Stockholm is only 45 min away. The duration/size of the thesis can be discussed. If you are interested in this project and want more information, don�t hesitate to contact me! Dr. Else Verbeek
Used skills Ethology, dog behavior, observational skills
Requirements affinity with dog and dog owners, accuracy, independent working style