Hello and welcome to Dogs and Society! My name is Rachel and I am really interested in how dogs fit into the human world.
For a long time I have wanted to do something to break down the barriers between canine behavioural science and dogs in real life. As a PhD student studying human directed aggressive behaviour, I have often wondered how many dog problems could be solved if scientists shared a bit more. Of course, that’s easier said than done when many science journals have hefty subscription fees, way out of the price range of the average owner/dog worker.
There are, of course, already a few really brilliant blogs that already talk about dog behaviour and dog/human relationships, and I highly recommend you have a look for these if that’s what you’re interested in. A few of my favourites are ‘Do You Believe in Dog?’ ‘Companion Animal Psychology’ and ‘Eileen and Dogs’. However, I haven’t yet found a place on the internet where people can learn about some of the more meaty dog/human issues, whether they be behavioural, legal, medical, ethical etc. ‘Dogs and Society’ will deal specifically with topics concerning the interaction between dogs and humans. Breed specific legislation, the ‘One Health’ principle, puppy farming and aggressive behaviour are all examples of the sorts of things you can read about here.
Some of these topics might sound a little serious, but I strongly believe that in order to protect the relationship between dogs and humans, we must tackle these issues head on, armed with as much evidence as we can muster. I can also say from experience that some of the most ‘serious’ topics in canine science are also the most fascinating.
I’d like to round up by encouraging you to get in touch with feedback (good or bad), questions, ideas, suggestions, or just to say “Hi”. I would love to think that what we create here starts discussions that result in great things for us and our four legged pals – let’s make it happen!