Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


31st Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2005

Event Details

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Paper Session #370
Animal Training I
Monday, May 30, 2005
2:30 PM–3:20 PM
Boulevard C (2nd floor)
Area: EAB
Chair: Eduardo J. Fernandez (Indiana University)
Marian Breland Bailey Award Winner: The Functional Value of Enrichment: Determining Environmental Enrichment Effects in Lemurs Through the Use of Paired-Choice Preference Assessments
Domain: Basic Research
EDUARDO J. FERNANDEZ (Indiana University), William D. Timberlake (Indiana University)
Abstract: Over the past several decades, a number of captive animal settings have begun to focus more on the use of environmental enrichment to promote the “well-being” of their animals, (Markowitz and Aday, 1998). One of the purposes of environmental enrichment is to produce more naturalistic behaviors on the part of the captive animal(s), (Mellen & MacPhee, 2001). The purpose of the current study was to examine the use of a preference assessment in determining potential items to be used as food enrichment. 8 food items were initially run in a paired-choice preference assessment, similar to the procedures used by Fisher et al. (1992). The preference assessment was conducted with 4 species of lemur, and then tested as enrichment for 2 of the 4 species: Ring-tailed and collared lemurs. During the enrichment condition, items were split into low- (LP) and high-preferred (HP) items, and tested in bamboo feeding devices. In general, both LP and HP produced greater activity and area use in both species compared to baseline, and HP produced greater effects than LP. The results suggest that paired-choice preference assessments could be used to systematically evaluate potential environmental enrichment, thereby increasing the likelihood of discovering successful enrichment strategies.
Marian Breland Bailey Award Winner: A Functional Reconceptualization of Aggressive Behavior in Dogs
Domain: Basic Research
SUSAN D. KAPLA (West Virginia University)
Abstract: Accurate diagnosis and classification of aggressive behavior in dogs is considered the first step in developing interventions, however, a standardized classification system does not exist Most existing classification schemes are structural rather than functional. The utility of an approach that emphasizes behavioral function to inform effective treatment has been demonstrated in human populations and suggests the utility of such an approach for dog behavior problems. This paper will present a general overview of the current status of aggressive behavior in dogs, a description of current classification systems, a discussion of the assumptions such classification systems require, and their utility in developing effective interventions. It will be argued that a better understanding of aggressive behavior will come from understanding behavioral function.



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