Exploring owner perceptions of the impacts of seasonal weather variations on canine activity and potential consequences for human–canine relationships

Hall, E.J. ORCID: 0000-0002-9978-8736, Carter, A.J. ORCID: 0000-0002-6216-2377 and Farnworth, M.J. ORCID: 0000-0001-6226-0818, 2021. Exploring owner perceptions of the impacts of seasonal weather variations on canine activity and potential consequences for human–canine relationships. Animals, 11 (11): 3302.

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Abstract

Climate change is leading to more instances of seasonal weather variation. Studies have explored the impact of adverse winter weather on dog walking, but the impact on the dog’s overall activity levels have not been previously considered. This study explored dog owner perceptions of the effects of both summer and winter weather on their dog’s activity levels. An international online survey recruited 3153 respondents between May and December 2018, to explore the impact of summer and winter weather conditions on baseline activity levels. Owners reported their dogs were more impacted by cold (48.2% less likely to exercise their dog in the cold) and ice (64.0% less likely), than rain (25.3% were less likely). In hot weather, over 80% of owners reported reduced exercise duration and vigour for their dogs. Carrying water or walking near water to facilitate activity in the summer was the most popular mitigation strategy (90.8%). Participation in dog sports appeared to reduce the impact of winter weather on canine activity and increase owner awareness of cooling strategies to facilitate summer activity. Strategies to promote safe activity participation are needed to maintain canine activity levels amidst rising global temperatures, including better understanding of cooling strategies for exercising dogs.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Animals
Creators: Hall, E.J., Carter, A.J. and Farnworth, M.J.
Publisher: MDPI AG
Date: 19 November 2021
Volume: 11
Number: 11
Identifiers:
NumberType
10.3390/ani11113302DOI
1498074Other
Divisions: Schools > School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences
Record created by: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 15 Dec 2021 13:40
Last Modified: 15 Dec 2021 13:40
URI: http://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/45132

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