Applied Animal Behavior
This course will focus on applied behavior topics of common companion, farm, and zoo animals. We will discuss animal body language and typical behavior and compare that to people?s perceptions of that behavior. Assessment of behavior and common problem behaviors will be reviewed along with effective management and modification techniques of those problems. Force-free handling and positive reinforcement training will be emphasized. We will examine abnormal behavior particularly as it relates to stress and poor welfare and design remediation, management, and modification programs to mitigate that behavior, with the goal of improving welfare. This course builds on topics covered in APP 1011 Principles of Animal Behavior and APP 1007 Wildlife in Captivity, and relates to APP 1008 Introduction to Animal Welfare but it is not necessary to have taken any of those courses nor is this a repeat of those courses. This course will be a mix of lecture, discussion, and hands-on work with animals. Students will design their own assessment and training programs, implement them, and record their progress and outcome. There will be several smaller research and writing assignments as well. Students will gain an understanding of the typical behavior of select animals, assessment techniques and indicators of poor welfare, and effective strategies for working with those animals in a variety of settings as well as appreciate the role of human companions and caretakers in the expression and perception of animal behavior.
- School of Veterinary Medicine