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Department of Animal Sciences


Dogs Needed for Research Study

Help with a research project and get an Amazon gift card? Sign me up!

Every year, thousands of dogs are relinquished to shelters because of behavioral problems; often these dogs end up being euthanized because the behaviors they display make them unadoptable. By knowing if the dog is at risk for problematic behavior, researchers can better direct selection, breeding, and clinical management of dogs which will alleviate the burden of shelters and improve dog’s welfare. Therefore, the goal for this study is to evaluate the efficiency of these genetic markers for the prediction of problematic dog behavior with the idea of developing them into simpler diagnostic tools that can be used in a clinical setting.

Participation in this study is very simple. You will need to sign a consent form, send a DNA sample (taken with a non-invasive, cheek swab), and respond to two questionnaires about the behavior of the dog. All this will be done by you at your home. One of the questionnaires must be completed online (it can be even done on a smartphone). Dogs can be purebreds or mixed breeds. They will provide a kit to collect the sample and include a prepaid envelope for you to send the sample. Once the sample and the consent are recieved, you will recieve a $5 Amazon gift card. 

To participate in this study or for more information please, e-mail Dr. Isain Zapata and mention “Genetics of dog behavior study” in the subject of the message.

Be sure to let them know how many dogs you have, what type of dogs they are, and if they related to each other. If you have several dogs but only one has the behavioral problems, still, let them know.