Stress is Sabotaging Your Dog Adoption Efforts

January 2016 by Dr. Sheila D'Arpino

Audience: Executive Leadership, Shelter/Rescue Staff & Volunteers, Veterinary Team

Video Length: 1:19

Are dogs in shelters developing health and behavior problems because of stress? And does that make adoption more difficult and less likely for those pets?

Certified veterinary behavior specialist Dr. Sheila D'Arpino has worked with shelter dogs since the 1990s, and seen the harmful effects of stress on sheltered dogs. Through her work at UC Davis, the Center for Shelter Dogs/Animal Rescue League of Boston, Maddie's Fund® and others, she's developed strategies to recognize those effects both in individual dogs and in the whole shelter population - yes, it happens!

Please join Dr. D'Arpino and Maddie's Institute® for How Stress is Sabotaging Your Dog Adoption Efforts.

Viewers of this webcast will learn:

  • The difference between adaptive and maladaptive stress
  • To differentiate acute, episodic and chronic stress
  • The definition and meaning of stress
  • How a pet's personality influences intensity of reaction to stressors, recovery from stress, and behavioral response to stress
  • Factors that cause stress in a shelter
  • The role of stress and welfare on health, disease and well-being in shelter and rescue dogs
  • How to clearly identify and characterize stress and poor welfare in dogs
  • The impact of stress on a dog's likelihood of adoption.

How Stress is Sabotaging Your Dog Adoption Efforts is part of an ongoing series of educational programs from Maddie's Institute, the academic division of Maddie's Fund®, providing the most innovative animal welfare information to shelter staff, veterinarians, rescue groups and community members to increase the lifesaving of homeless dogs and cats community-wide.

This program was reviewed and approved by the AAVSB RACE program for 1 hour of continuing education in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB RACE approval. Please contact the AAVSB RACE program if you have any comments/concerns regarding this program's validity or relevancy to the veterinary profession.

This course has been pre-approved for Certified Animal Welfare Administrator continuing education credits.

About Sheila D'Arpino, DVM, DACVB

Dr. Sheila Segurson D'Arpino completed veterinary school and then a specialty training program in animal behavior with a focus on sheltered pets at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine in 1996 and 2005, respectively.

Dr. D'Arpino has worked as an emergency veterinarian, private practice veterinarian, shelter veterinarian, dog trainer, veterinary behaviorist and foster-based adoption program director.

Currently, Dr. D'Arpino uses the knowledge she gained and skills that she learned in her role as Director of Research for Maddie's Fund®.  In her current role, Dr. Darpino's goal is to develop and support research that increases pet adoptions from rescue groups and shelters and improves pet well-being. She relies upon her background working in and with animal shelters, pet foster care programs, and veterinary medicine to lead Maddie's Fund research efforts.

Dr. D'Arpino is also a courtesy lecturer for the Maddie's® Shelter Medicine Program at the University of Florida and is the lead instructor for the Shelter Animal Behavior and Welfare online course.

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