Quadarella, M. A., Kundu, M. C., Alderfer, T. K. et al. 2016. Laboratory Animal Science Professional 4(4) (December), 47-49.

Our goal was to improve dog socialization by increasing novel human interactions, while also providing non-animal care staff opportunity to interact with the dogs. Our volunteer dog socialization program was developed to explore the possibility of allowing staff other than professional animal care staff to be trained to enter the dog facility and interact with the dogs as part of a structured socialization program. In consultation with animal care staff management, and members of our institution’s Occupational Health and Safety group, a formal training program was developed to prepare non-animal care staff to participate in this program. We have successfully developed a program for non-animal care staff volunteers from employees at our institution to interact with dogs in our canine colony. This has increased socialization opportunities and also provided novel enrichment. This program was well received by both the animal care staff and volunteers, and survey results indicate the program has been beneficial for both staff and dogs in the colony.

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