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University of Nebraska Opens Dog Behavior Lab

The University of Nebraska has announced a new research facility that will focus on the study of dog behavior.  The Canine Cognition and Human Interaction Lab is part of the Department of Psychology.  It will conduct a series of research studies involving dog behavior and psychology, and also investigate how human behavior and psychology is impacted by interaction with dogs.

The Canine Cognition and Human Interaction Lab is soliciting area dog owners to enroll their dogs to be a part of future research. Owners will be contacted when there is a study in which their pet is eligible to participate, beginning in Fall 2018. Over 150 potential canine participants have been enrolled to date.  Human participants are not currently being enrolled, but the UNL site mentions there could be future opportunities offered to the general public and those who have enrolled their dogs in the program.

The UNL program hosted a “Husker DogFest” event this past week to welcome the public to their new facility.  The pet friendly event included lab tours, dog activities, demonstrations (obedience, police dogs, and frisbee tricks), vendor areas, and food trucks.  The DogFest website says they hope to bring the event back for 2019, so stay tuned if you are local to the area.

If you are interested in attending a school with a dog behavior lab, or if you would like to enroll your dog in future research studies, there are a handful of other dog behavior labs in the United States.  The list includes Arizona State University, Auburn University, Barnard College, Duke University, Emory University, Texas Tech University, University of Arizona, University of Kentucky, and Yale University.  There are also international programs in Canada, the United Kingdom, Austria, and Hungary.

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