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Personal profile

Research Interests

Applied Behaviour Analysis, canine behaviour, human-canine interactions & relationships, anthrozoology, verbal behaviour, rule-governed behaviour & contingency-shaped behaviour, metacontingencies & cultural practices, interbehaviourism, human & canine learning & behaviour change, single-case research designs, systematic reviews & meta-statistics

MSc Applied Behaviour Analysis
BSc (Hons) Applied Animal Behaviour
Dog trainer in accordance with animal welfare legislation
 (awarded by Austrian Ministry of Health)

Research Statement

My current research investigates the effectiveness of different caregiver training strategies as they relate to dog owners of companion dogs that display undesired behaviours (e.g. jumping-up on people). To inform the empirical part of my PhD dissertation, a systematic review and meta-analysis of caregiver training across human-human and human-dog dyads was performed. Based on these findings, the caregiver training approaches were selected (e.g. oral instruction). Single-case research designs are used to quantify behaviour (change). Adding a qualitative layer to the investigation, the participating owners' self-perceived stress levels in respect to their dogs' undesired behaviours are explored. To this end, a pre-post caregiver stress questionnaire is administered. Long term effects of the training, as well as generalisation and social validity of the training are also examined (i.e. effects of training on owner-dog relationship). Overall, this extensive research project adds to the existing literature by providing information about the efficacy of currently employed caregiver training strategies, subjectly perceived stress by owners of "problematic dogs", and medium-to-long term effectiveness of interventions.

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Research Output

Does species matter? A meta-analysis of caregiver training across learner species

Pfaller-Sadovsky, N., 28 Feb 2019.

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

  • File
  • Open Access
  • 45 Downloads (Pure)

    We Don’t Train in Vain: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Human and Canine Caregiver Training

    Pfaller-Sadovsky, N., Medina, L., Dillenburger, K. & Hurtado-Parrado, C., 08 Aug 2019, In : Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science. p. 1-67 67 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 45 Downloads (Pure)
  • Prizes

    B.F. Skinner Foundation Research Award

    Nicole Pfaller-Sadovsky (Recipient), 19 Sep 2018

    Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)

  • Activities

    • 2 Oral presentation
    • 1 Public lecture/debate/seminar

    Owner-Conducted Functional Analyses of Jumping-Up in Companion Dogs

    Nicole Pfaller-Sadovsky (Advisor)
    13 Mar 2019

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesPublic lecture/debate/seminar

    Conditioned Reinforcement in the Applied Animal Literature: A Meta-Analytic Review

    Nicole Pfaller-Sadovsky (Presenter), , Lucia Medina (Contributor), , Daniela Cardillo (Contributor), , Susan Friedman PhD (Advisor), & Camilo Hurtado-Parrado PhD (Advisor)

    29 Sep 2019

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation


    Why do we keep dogs? A cultural practices approach to human-dog interactions

    Nicole Pfaller-Sadovsky (Presenter), Camilo Hurtado-Parrado PhD (Advisor)
    27 Apr 2019

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation