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Title: Assessing stress in wild dogs during post-trapping procedures
Contributor(s): Nolan, Huw (author); Ballard, Guy-Anthony (author); Brown, Wendy (author)
Publication Date: 2011
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Abstract: Wild dogs (including pure dingoes, 'Canis lupus dingo', feral domestic dogs, 'C. lupus familiaris', and their hybrids) are widely distributed throughout Australia and have a significant impact on stock losses. There remains no accurate estimate of the agricultural losses due to wild dog predation. However, wild dog control costs around $7 million / year (Flemming et al, 2001). Wild dogs are trapped frequently across Australia for various reasons e.g. monitoring wild dog activity with GPS collars. There is general consensus that padded leg-hold traps are a humane method of trapping wild dogs for scientific purposes; but scientists disagree over which are the best post-trapping procedures with regards to animal welfare. Some of the post-trapping procedures may be stressful to the animals and scientists currently rely on anecdotal evidence to assist in their efforts to minimise the stress associated with these procedures. We aim to quantify the stress experienced by wild dogs during processing by measuring cortisol levels in hair and saliva, along with heart rate variation and behavioural observations. Data currently being collected includes a comparison between a standardised procedure and a simple variation (with and without the dogs' eyes covered) as there is currently debate as to which is the best practice.
Publication Type: Conference Publication
Source of Publication: Proceedings of the 15th Australasian Vertebrate Pest Conference, p. 70-70
Place of Publication: Online
Field of Research (FOR): 070203 Animal Management
070205 Animal Protection (Pests and Pathogens)
070207 Humane Animal Treatment
HERDC Category Description: E3 Extract of Scholarly Conference Publication
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