Stress Reduction: Happy and Healthy Shelter Dogs

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June 2016 by Dr. Sara L. Bennett

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

Video Length: 60 minutes

Everyone wants to make sheltered life better for dogs while they wait to get adopted. What works? What doesn't? And how do we know? 

In this free Maddie's Fund® webcast, Sara L. Bennett, DVM, MS, DACVB, a certified veterinary behaviorist, will share an overview of the importance of enrichment to help maximize the emotional well being of sheltered dogs.

She'll also cover how to determine whether a particular form of enrichment applications is actually beneficial, as well as examples of effective forms of enrichment. An opportunity for audience Q&A will follow the webcast.

Attendees will learn:  

  • How to stimulate the various senses and social and physical needs of dogs in a shelter setting
  • What the scientific literature tells us about enrichment for dogs
  • How to measure the effect of enrichment efforts
  • How to know if a change has created a positive change in emotional well being and welfare

Stress Reduction: Happy and Healthy Shelter Dogs is the follow-up presentation in a series of four webcasts. These include:

  • How Stress is Sabotaging Your Cat Adoption Efforts
  • How Stress is Sabotaging Your Dog Adoption Efforts
  • Stress Reduction: Happy and Healthy Shelter Cats on a Fast Track to Adoption
  • These presentations are 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 course has been pre-approved for Certified Animal Welfare Administrator continuing education credits.

    About Sara L. Bennett, DVM, MS, DACVB

    Dr. Sara Bennett has been a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists since 2012 after completing a residency in Animal Behavior and Masters of Science at Purdue University.

    Dr. Bennett is currently a courtesy lecturer for the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine Maddie's® Shelter Medicine Program and co-instructor for University's online learning course "Shelter Animal Behavior and Welfare," which is one of three core courses in the online Maddie's® Graduate Certificate in Shelter Medicine Program.

    In her behavior consultations, Dr. Bennett addresses a variety of behavior problems and behavioral disorders including aggression, inappropriate elimination, compulsive disorder, fears, and phobias, as well as behavior problems associated with aging across a wide range of species. She particularly enjoys addressing problem behavior in shelter and rescue animals, helping to protect animal welfare, make these pets more adoptable, strengthen the budding human-animal bond, and keep these animals in their new homes.

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