Human-Animal Interaction - (15 credits)

In this module students will be introduced to fundamental concepts in equine and canine behaviour, from evolution to domestication, and exploring what drives animal behaviour. This will then be linked to what motivates the animal during training and the learning theory behind it. Students will practise the correct identification of the body language integral to both species behavioural repertoire, categorising and defining when and why we are likely to observe these behaviours in both natural and domestic settings. Students will be taught to differentiate between behaviours caused through pain and fear rather than disobedience, in a range of situations exploring handling, ridden, social and other problems involving human-animal and animal-animal interactions. Comparisons and contrasts will be made between the equine and canine species with a focus on what skills are important to the therapist in a professional setting. There will be a consistent link to the importance of developing these observational skills as a therapist when assessing an animal for therapeutic intervention.