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Effects of Environmental Enrichment on the Behavior of Shelter Dogs

Herron, M.E., Kirby-Madden, T.M. & Lord, L.K. Effects of environmental enrichment on the behaviour of shelter dogs. To determine the effect of food-toy enrichment combined with cage-behavior training on desirable behaviors in shelter dogs and adoption rates. Design—Randomized controlled clinical trial. Animals—107 dogs. Procedures—Dogs placed up for adoption in a municipal shelter were randomly assigned to either an experimental group (n = 48) or control group (59). Experimental group subjects were exposed to an environmental enrichment and training protocol consisting of twice-daily cage-behavior training and daily provision of a food-filled toy.