Canine Obesity Genetics Project

As in humans, obesity in dogs is associated with reduced lifespan, mobility problems, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

The increase in levels of obesity in dogs mirrors that in humans – reduced exercise and ready access to high calorie food are likely to blame in both. But, some breeds of dog are more susceptible to obesity than others, suggesting the influence of genetic factors.

UK-based dog scientists investigating the genetics of canine obesity need your help with three studies.

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Canine Sensory Perception Project

Dog scientists in the UK are running three projects to investigate visual and hearing perception in dogs. They are looking for dog owners and breeders in the South East to participate in behavioural observations of their dogs’ responses to various sounds and sights.

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Canine Attachment Study

Dog scientists in the UK are investigating ‘attachment’ behaviour in dogs.

They are looking for dog owners to complete a 15 minute survey online.

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The Itchy Dog Project – Phase 2

The Itchy Dog Project was launched in 2018 to help dog scientists examine the possible genetic and environmental causes of canine atopic dermatitis. Around 10% of all dogs suffer from skin allergies which can have a big impact on their lives and their owners.

An online survey was originally aimed at owners of Labradors and Golden Retrievers but after a very big response of more than 4,000 dog owners, and some promising early results, the survey is now being widened to include all dogs to help the team develop new ways to manage the condition.

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The Dog Aging Project

Scientists in America are running two studies in to aging in dogs.  They believe that enhancing the longevity and healthspan – the healthy period of life – in peoples’ pets will have a major impact on our lives.

The Dog Aging Project has two major aims: a longitudinal study of aging in dogs and an intervention trial to prevent disease and extend healthy longevity in middle-aged dogs.

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