• Room 02.511 - David Keir Building

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Animal welfare, animal behaviour, laterality, pet-human bond, dogs, cat, zoo animals

1992 …2019
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Personal profile

Particulars

I graduated from Queen's University Belfast in 1992 with a first class Honours degree in Psychology.  I went on to pursue a PhD in QUB on the welfare of kennelled dogs, graduating with my Doctorate in 1996.  After several years of post-doc research, I was appointed to a lectureship in Animal Welfare in 1999.  I was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2004 and to Reader in 2013.

Research Interests

My research concentrates on animal behaviour and welfare, with a particular focus on the domestic dog.  Much of my work has been concerned with exploring the welfare of animals housed in captivity (e.g. zoos, rescue kennels) and finding ways of improving psychological well-being through the implementation of novel and scientifically tested enrichment strategies. Other research areas include pets and human health, behaviour problems in companion animals and, more recently, laterality in animals.

Teaching

I teach at Level 1 (Introductory Psychology) and Level 3 (Animal Behaviour) on the UG curriculum.  I supervise Level 1 and Level 2 project groups and final year thesis students.  I currently have one PhD student, studying laterality in cats.

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Projects 2007 2017

Research Output 1992 2019

65 Downloads (Pure)

Laterality as a tool for assessing breed differences in emotional reactivity in the domestic cat, Felis silvestris catus

Wells, D. L. & McDowell, L. J., 03 Sep 2019, In : Animals. 9, 10 p., 647.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
Felis
breed differences
Cats
cats
Felidae
4 Citations (Scopus)
88 Downloads (Pure)

The state of research on human-animal relations

Wells, D., 19 Mar 2019, In : Anthrozoos. 32

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
1 Citation (Scopus)
56 Downloads (Pure)

Lack of association between paw preference and behaviour problems in the domestic dog, Canis familiaris

Wells, D. L., Hepper, P. G., Milligan, A. D. S. & Barnard, S., 12 Oct 2018, In : Applied Animal Behaviour Science.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
behavior problems
Dogs
dogs
Aggression
Fear
2 Citations (Scopus)
113 Downloads (Pure)

Laterality as a predictor of coping strategies in dogs entering a rescue shelter

Barnard, S., Wells, D. L. & Hepper, P. G., 23 Oct 2018, In : Symmetry. 10, 11, 15 p., 538.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
lateral stability
shelters
Cortisol
dogs
Hydrocortisone

Lateralization of spontaneous behaviours in the domestic cat, Felis silvestris

McDowell, L. J., Wells, D. L. & Hepper, P. G., Jan 2018, In : Animal Behaviour. 135, p. 37-43 7 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
Felis
cats
animal
food
limb

Prizes

Research Prize for Best Research Project

Deborah Wells (Recipient), 2005

Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)

Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowship Award

Deborah Wells (Recipient), 1999

Prize: Fellowship awarded competitively

Activities 1995 2019

  • 9 Membership of peer review panel or committee
  • 2 Work on advisory panel to industry or government or non-government organisation
  • 2 Editorial activity
  • 1 Contribution to the work of national or international committees and working groups

Animals (Journal)

Deborah Wells (Peer reviewer)
2019

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesPublication peer-review

File

Anthrozoos (Journal)

Deborah Wells (Editorial advisory board member)
2012 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activity

International Working Group for Advice on Dogs and Human Health

Deborah Wells (Member)
20112012

Activity: Consultancy typesContribution to the work of national or international committees and working groups

Applied Animal Behaviour Science (Journal)

Deborah Wells (Editorial advisory board member)
2011 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial activity

1st and 3rd Reign of Catz and Dogz Conferences (Event)

Deborah Wells (Member)
20092011

Activity: Membership typesMembership of peer review panel or committee

Impact

Improving the Psychological Wellbeing of Captive Animals

Deborah Wells (Participant), Peter Hepper (Participant)

Impact: Quality of Life Impact, Public Policy Impact