Effects of Support Dogs on Eyewitness Anxiety during Questioning

In: Society & Animals
View More View Less
Download Citation Get Permissions

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institution


Buy instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):


Being an eyewitness to a crime can be a traumatic event, especially if the eyewitness is the victim. In addition, following the crime the witness is susceptible to being distressed further during questioning. The current research examined the effects a trained support dog would have on mock witnesses’ anxiety (as measured by heartrate) during questioning. Participants observed a video and answered questions from an actual uniformed police officer, similar to a normal eyewitness interview. During the interview, participants were either presented with a support dog or a glass of water (control). Results indicated that while the uniformed officer increased participants’ anxiety significantly, the support dog successfully decreased anxiety almost to the point of baseline, and significantly more than the control condition. Implications and real-world application are discussed.

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 618 163 18
Full Text Views 263 5 0
PDF Views & Downloads 59 12 0