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Assessing the Impact of COVID-19 Restrictions on the Welfare and on the Behavior of Puppies and Dogs in Ireland

In: Journal of Applied Animal Ethics Research
Author:
Elizabeth Ann Walsh Cork Pet Behavior Centre Clonakilty, P85 YF58, Co. Cork Ireland

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https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7277-0325
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Abstract

The popularity of puppies/dogs as companions/playmates/walking buddies was highlighted in Ireland with COVID-19 restrictions in March/2020, when the demand for puppies/dogs increased as people were confined to within 2/km of their homes. However, what was the rational supporting this trend, the influences/research undertaken by prospective owners? Two online-surveys were conducted, targeting veterinarians and behaviorists to establish motivation/attitude to owning dogs and behavioral issues being presented. Interviews by phone were conducted with the Dublin Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Dog’s Trust and three Italian shelters for comparison purposes, to investigate the welfare of dogs during restrictions. An Garda Síochána (the National Police Service of Ireland) were contacted, to clarify the situation, in relation to dog theft and domestic abuse, which is strongly associated with animal abuse. Many factors may have influenced/impacted the epigenetic development of the behavior and resulting welfare of puppies/dogs, during this period.

Achoimriú

Leagadh béim ar an tóir a bhí ar choileáin/madraí mar chompánaigh/playmates siúlóide in Éirinn nuair a tháinig srianta COVID19 i bhfeidhm i mí Mhárta 2020. Mhéadaigh an t-éileamh ar choileáin agus madraí ó mí Mhárta 2020 toisc go raibh daoine teoranta laistigh de 2km óna dtithe. É sin ráite cérbh é an réasúnach a thacaigh leis an treocht seo, an taighde agus an tionchar a rinne úinéirí a bhí spéis acu ceannach? Rinneadh dhá suirbhé ar líne, ceann amháin dírithe ar tréidlianna agus an ceann eile ar iompraithe, chun fáil amach an spreagadh agus an dearcadh maidir le úinearacht madraí agus saincheisteanna iompraíochta. Rinneadh agallaimh ghutháin leis an gCumann Bhaile Átha Cliath um Fhóiriithint ar Ainmhithe (DSPCA), Iontaobhas Madraí (Dogs’ Trust) agus trí dhídean madraí san Iodáil, mar ábhar comparáide, chun faisnéis a fháil maidir le leas madraí le linn srianta COVID19. Rinneadh teagmháil leis an Gharda Síochána, chun an stádas reatha a shoiléiriú in Éirinn i dtaobh gadáíocht madraí agus drochíde bhaile. Tá nasc láidir idir an dá rud seo. Is dócha go bhfuil tionchar ag a lán cúinsí ar fhorbairt epigenetic agus leas coileán/madraí dá bharr, le linn na tréimhse seo.

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