One of the leading preventable causes of death for a dog is euthanasia at an animal shelter. In fact, approximately every 10th dog currently lives at an animal shelter and only a portion will make it out alive. In this talk, I will describe the research on how we can improve adoption rates through behavioral training. First, I will describe what morphology and behavior of the dogs adopters are looking for when selecting a dog from the shelter. Then, I will demonstrate which training programs have been empirically validated to reduce inappropriate behavior both OUTSIDE OF the kennel and, subsequently, how these behavioral programs influence adoption rates. Specifically, I will describe programs been shown to improve adoption rates by approximately 70% at our experimental shelter and may be used by shelter professionals and volunteers to increase adoption rates and thereby decrease euthanasia rates at their local animal shelter.
Assess what adopters are looking for when they are selecting a dog from the shelter
Review how to train the specific dog behaviors that are shown to be important to adopters
Review how to develop a behavioral program at your shelter that is specifically aimed at increasing adoption rates of dogs