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“Type” as central to perceptions of breed differences in behavior of domestic dog

Clarke, Tracey and Mills, Daniel and Cooper, Jonathan (2016) “Type” as central to perceptions of breed differences in behavior of domestic dog. Society and Animals, 24 (5). pp. 467-485. ISSN 1063-1119

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Item Type:Article
Item Status:Live Archive


A survey was designed to explore the effect of type classification on perception and
expectation of a dog’s behavior. The survey focused on two forms of presentation: the
effect of visual image versus breed name in the identification of a breed as a dangerous
dog type, and the effect of breed group classification on expectation of a dog’s
level of aggressiveness. The findings have serious implications for Staffordshire Bull
Terriers. Respondents were over 5 times more likely to misascribe by image alone the
Staffordshire Bull Terrier as a dangerous breed as defined under the United Kingdom’s
Dangerous Dogs Act 1991. Furthermore, the classification of Terrier attracted high
scores in relation to type-specific aggressiveness. These findings highlight the need for
more research on personal perception of supposedly dangerous dog breeds to
better understand and explain this phenomenon, leading to better protection of
the public and better welfare outcomes for dogs.

Keywords:Domestic animals, Pets, Dogs, Companion animals, NotOAChecked
Subjects:D Veterinary Sciences, Agriculture and related subjects > D300 Animal Science
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:24002
Deposited On:02 Sep 2016 13:46

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