The Animal Behaviour, Cognition and Welfare Group at the University of Lincoln focuses on a wide area of research with dogs, including but not limited to, scent studies, expression of personality traits and behavioural and cognitive developments.

Our studies are listed below, with links to access the full paper.

Preliminary study comparing dogs’ responses to travel in electric cars, 2024

Authors: Claire Ricci-Bonot, Ana Maria Barcelos, Ellenor Davies, Kitty Phillips, Joseph Pinto Arackal, Honour Smith, Adele Spain and Daniel S. Mills

Summary: This study aimed to undertake a preliminary examination using a mixed methods approach to identify potential issues worthy of further investigation by comparing a dog’s behavioural and physiological (heart rate) responses when travelling in Electric vehicles versus  ones with internal combustion engines.

The impact of auditory distraction on learning and task performance in working dogs, 2023

Authors: Elizabeth Sheldon, Carla Hart, Daniel Mills, Carl Soulsbury, Rebecca Sumner, Anna Wilkinson

Summary: This study investigated how training with an acoustic distractor impacts dogs’ capacity to learn and later perform a task in the presence of novel distractors.

The Canine Frustration Questionnaire – Development of a new psychometric tool for measuring frustration in domestic dogs (Canis familiaris), 2019

Authors: Kevin McPeake, Lisa Collins, Helen Zulch and Daniel Mills 

Summary: This study looked at the development of a new screen to assess frustration in domestic dogs.

Truth is in the eye of the beholder: Perception of the Müller-Lyer illusion in dogs, 2018

Authors: Benjamin Keep, Helen Zulch and Anna Wilkinson

Summary: Visual illusions are used to study visual perception in humans and nonhuman animals, since they provide insight into the psychological and cognitive processes underlying the perceptual system. This study looked at whether dogs were able to learn a relational discrimination and perceive the Müller-Lyer illusion.

Animals can assign novel odours to a known category, 2017

Authors: Hannah WrightAnna WilkinsonRuth CroxtonDeanna GrahamRebecca HardingHayley HodkinsonBenjamin KeepNina Cracknell and Helen Zulch

Summary: This study looked at categorisation in the olfactory domain in dogs.

Differences in trait impulsivity indicate diversification of dog breeds into working and show lines, 2016

Authors: Fernanda Ruiz Fadel, Patricia Driscoll, Malgorzata Pilot, Hannah Wright, Helen Zulch and
Daniel Mills                                                             

Summary: This project used the Dog Impulsivity Assessment Scale (DIAS) and Positive and Negative Activation Scale (PANAS) to investigate variation in behavioural tendencies within and between dog breeds. 

Word Generalisation by a Dog: Is shape important?, 2012

Authors: Emile van der Zee, Helen Zulch and Daniel Mill   

Summary: This study investigated how dogs associate words with objects. 

Behavioural and Physiological correlates of impulsivity in the domestic dog (Canis Familiaria), 2012

Authors: Hannah Wright, Daniel Mills and Petra Pollux       

Summary: This project used a behavioural test as well as the DIAS scale to measure impulsivity in different pedigree dog breeds.

Development and validation of a psychometric tool for assessing impulsivity in the domestic dog (Canis familiaris), 2011

Authors: Hannah Wright, Daniel Mills and Petra Pollux     

Summary: This project looked at developing a valid psychometric assessment tool of impulsivity in dogs, resulting in the development of the Dog Impulsivity Assessment Scale (DIAS).

The Development of a Psychometric Scale for the Evaluation of the Emotional Predispositions of Pet Dogs, 2002

Authors: Gill Sheppard and Daniel Mills                                                                               

Summary: This study highlights the development of a clinical tool that uses owner report to measure individual differences in positive and negative activation in pet dogs is described