Animal-assisted therapy can reduce symptoms of anxiety and loneliness among college students, according to researchers who provided animal-assisted therapy to 55 students in a group setting at a small arts college. They found a 60 percent decrease in self-reported anxiety and loneliness symptoms following animal-assisted therapy, in which a registered therapy dog was under the supervision of a lic
Scientists studying birth defects in humans and purebred dogs have identified an association between cleft lip and cleft palate -- conditions that occur when the lip and mouth fail to form properly during pregnancy -- and a mutation in the ADAMTS20 gene.
Global declines in carnivore populations could embolden plant eaters to increasingly dine on succulent vegetation, driving losses in plant and tree biodiversity, according to new research published in Science.
A fly's sense of smell could be used in new technology to detect drugs and bombs, new research has found. Brain scientists were surprised to find that the ‘nose’ of fruit flies can identify odors from illicit drugs and explosive substances almost as accurately as wine odor, which the insects are naturally attracted to because it smells like their favorite food, fermenting fruit.
How closely does the relationship between people and their non-human companions mirror the parent-child relationship? Researchers makes a contribution to answering this complex question by investigating differences in how important brain structures are activated when women view images of their children and of their own dogs.
Zoonosis -- transmission of infections from other vertebrates to humans -- causes regular and sometimes serious disease outbreaks. Bats are a well-known vertebrate reservoir of viruses like rabies and Ebola. Recent discovery of sequences in bats that are resemble influenza virus genes raised the question of whether bat flu viruses exist and could pose a threat to humans.
The bond between humans and dogs is strong and ancient. Dogs and people share many aspects of life. The relationship between the two species has been studied by psychologists, anthropologists, ethnologists and also by genetic and molecular biologists. In this sense, dogs are a great model for understanding the causes of human diseases, especially cancer. Unlike other mammals used in research, dogs
Americans love their dogs, but they don't always love to pick up after them. And that's a problem. Dog feces left on the ground wash into waterways, sometimes carrying bacteria -- including antibiotic-resistant strains -- that can make people sick. Now scientists have developed a new genetic test to figure out how much dogs are contributing to this health concern.
Pet food mislabeling: the issue is a significant one when it comes to commercial pet foods marketed for dogs and cats. New research set out to identify meat species present as well as any instances of mislabeling. Of the 52 products tested, 31 were labeled correctly, 20 were potentially mislabeled, and one contained a non-specific meat ingredient that could not be verified.
Truffles, along with caviar, are among the most expensive foods in the world. Because they grow underground, people use trained dogs or pigs to find them. But the distinctive smell of truffles is not only of interest to gourmets. A group of scientists has discovered that the smell of white truffles is largely produced by soil bacteria which are trapped inside truffle fruiting bodies.
Ridding the world of rabies in humans is cost-effective and achievable through mass dog vaccination programs, an international team of researchers says. A rabies vaccine has long existed. Even so, the disease kills an estimated 69,000 people worldwide -- that's 189 each day. Forty percent of them are children, mostly in Africa and Asia. The disease is spread primarily through the saliva of infecte
In a first-of-its kind study that combined molecular and environmental data, researchers performed a search for genes under environmental selection from domesticated sheep breeds. They identified 17 genes that are involved in energy metabolism, endocrine and autoimmune regulation.
Nearly one out of four dogs will develop cancer in their lifetime and 20 per cent of those will be lymphoma cases. Now, a new user-friendly electronic system for diagnosing lymphoma in dogs in the early stages, and for remission monitoring, has been developed by scientists.
Dogs generally seem to be cheerful, happy-go-lucky characters, so you might expect that most would have an optimistic outlook on life. In fact some dogs are distinctly more pessimistic than others, new research shows.
Dogs look at a person interacting with a new object longer than a person interacting with a familiar object moved to a different location, suggesting perception of goal-directed behavior, according to a new study.
A team of Spanish researchers have obtained the first partial genome sequence of an ancient pig. Extracted from a sixteenth century pig found at the site of the Montsoriu Castle in Girona, the data obtained indicates that this ancient pig is closely related to today's Iberian pig. Researchers also discard the hypothesis that Asian pigs were crossed with modern Iberian pigs.
In India’s human dominated agricultural landscapes, where leopards prowl at night, it’s not livestock that’s primarily on the menu -- it is man’s best friend.
The effect of movies featuring dogs on the popularity of dog breeds can last up to 10 years and is correlated with the general success of the movies, according to new research.
Recent research asserts that shelter workers operating in areas restricted by breed-specific legislation (BSL) are more likely to consciously mislabel a dog's breed if they felt it were to increase the dog's chances of being adopted and/or avoid being euthanized.
A new cancer drug for ‘man’s best friend’ is helping advance cancer therapies for humans, too. The drug, Verdinexor, works by preventing powerful tumor suppressing proteins from leaving the nucleus of cells, an exodus which allows cancer to grow unchecked. It's the first new therapeutic option for dog lymphoma in more than two decades, potentially offering vets another alternative for treating the
The results of a recent study have revealed that the immediate effects of training pet dogs with an electronic collar cause behavioural signs of distress, particularly when used at high settings.
While countries with dog control policies have curbed an infectious and gruesome canine cancer, the disease is continuing to lurk in the majority of dog populations around the world, particularly in areas with many free-roaming dogs, researchers report.
The genetic changes that transformed wild animals into domesticated forms have long been a mystery. An international team of scientists has now made a breakthrough by showing that many genes controlling the development of the brain and the nervous system were particularly important for rabbit domestication. The study gives answers to many genetic questions.
Wolves may be susceptible to yawn contagion, according to a new study. Researchers suggest that contagious yawning may be linked to human capacity for empathy, but little evidence apart from studies on primates, exists that links contagious yawning to empathy in other animals. Recently, researchers have documented domestic dogs demonstrating contagious yawning when exposed to human yawns in a scie
Sheepdogs use just two simple rules to round up large herds of sheep, scientists have discovered. The findings could lead to the development of robots that can gather and herd livestock, crowd control techniques, or new methods to clean up the environment.
Investing in dog owner education and facilities as a strategy to target physical inactivity and problems such as obesity in both people and their pets. It is estimated that 40% of dog owners don't take their dogs for a walk. In the UK, almost a quarter of households own a dog, but less than half of adults meet the recommended level of 150 minutes a week of physical activity.
Androstenone can stop dogs from barking, jumping, researchers report. Androstenone is produced by pigs in their saliva or fat, but Boar Mate androstenone is synthesized in a laboratory. One spray of Boar Mate on Toto was all it took to set the wheels of experimentation in motion.
Specially-trained victim recovery dogs can perform phenomenal feats in sniffing out the whereabouts of bodies and body parts, even beneath mounds of rubble or deep below water. But now a researcher is investigating ways in which they can carry out their grim but vital tasks even more efficiently.
A modified version of the Clostridium novyi (C. novyi-NT) bacterium can produce a strong and precisely targeted anti-tumor response in rats, dogs and now humans, according to a new report. In its natural form, C. novyi is found in the soil and, in certain cases, can cause tissue-damaging infection in cattle, sheep and humans. The microbe thrives only in oxygen-poor environments, which makes it a t
Two significant risk factors associated with painful neurological diseases in the skull shape of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel have been identified by researchers. The findings could help in tackling these conditions in toy dog breeds and could be used in breeding guidelines.