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The development and assessment of temperament tests for adult companion dogs

Taylor, Katy D. and Mills, Daniel S. (2006) The development and assessment of temperament tests for adult companion dogs. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research, 1 (3). pp. 94-108. ISSN 1558-7878

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Temperament tests have been created by a range of organizations and individuals in order to assess useful, predictable behavioral tendencies in working dogs and, increasingly, in companion dogs. For the latter group, such tests may help to select suitable pets from rescue centers or to identify those already in the population that are, or are likely to be, unsuitable as pets (e.g., those with behavior problems involving aggression). Unfortunately, many of these tests seem to have been developed without a systematic scientific approach. Perhaps as a result there are few reports of these tests in the scientific literature and even fewer that fully report their reliability and specific aspects of validity. This pattern is unfortunate, because the outcome of tests for companion dogs may have the potential to affect their welfare and survival. This paper attempts to encourage a more scientific approach to the development, conduct, and evaluation of temperament tests for adult companion dogs. Five key measures of the quality of a temperament test (purpose, standardization, reliability, validity, and practicality) are identified and explained in detail. Methods for the assessment of these qualities are given together with discussion of their limitations. © 2006 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Keywords:Canis familiaris
Subjects:D Veterinary Sciences, Agriculture and related subjects > D300 Animal Science
D Veterinary Sciences, Agriculture and related subjects > D328 Animal Welfare
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:9068
Deposited On:05 May 2013 19:17

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