Research Grants, Awards and Findings Announced by Fear Free

Research Grants, Awards and Findings Announced by Fear Free

Denver, CO, January 04, 2019 --( Fear Free LLC, based in Denver, announced its 2018 research grants, award recipients and results. Fear Free’s research funding supports its mission to prevent and alleviate fear, anxiety and stress in pets by inspiring and educating the people who care for them.

Two Fear Free awards were presented for best research abstracts at the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists annual veterinary behavior symposium (Denver 2018). Awardees were Amanda Hampton, a fourth-year veterinary student at Louisiana State University School of Veterinary Medicine in Baton Rouge, and Ragen McGowan, PhD, from Nestle Purina Research in St. Louis. Hampton’s research found that in comparison to silence and classical music, cat-specific music played prior to and during physical exams may benefit cats by decreasing stress levels, thus increasing quality of care in veterinary clinical settings.

McGowan and her coworkers studied effects of the probiotic Bifidobacterium longum (BL999) on anxiety in 24 Labrador Retrievers using a crossover design in which each dog received a placebo or BL999 for six weeks. Dogs treated with BL999 demonstrated significant reductions compared to placebo in both behavioral signs of anxiety as well as physiologic signs including heart rate and salivary cortisol.

Two additional awards were presented at the European Congress of Behavioural Medicine and Animal Welfare in Berlin in September 2018. Recipients were Ludovica Pierantoni, a veterinary behaviorist from Naples, Italy, for her research demonstrating that puppy classes can positively affect the behavior of dogs separated from their litters too early; and to veterinary behavior resident Joao Da Silva-Monteiro of Portugal for his poster reviewing the use of psychoactive drugs to change stress behaviors of dogs and cats during hospitalization.

A Fear Free grant was awarded for veterinary student research at the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine to Alexis S. Deriberprey. Deriberprey’s research found that cats experience more stress when physical exams are conducted in the treatment room rather than in the exam room.

Fear Free awarded three additional grants to projects for 2019: a veterinary behavior resident’s research at Indiana’s Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine on “Effects of a single dose of oral gabapentin in dogs during a veterinary examination”; a student research project at Western University College of Veterinary Medicine in Pomona, CA, on effects of enhanced human-animal interactions on decreasing stress of veterinary visits in pet dogs; and a research grant to a member of the Behavior Chapter of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists for a project evaluating the effect of alpha-casozepine in reducing fear, anxiety and stress during veterinary consultations.

“Fear Free is also pleased to announce the funding of two awards for the highest scoring papers accepted for publication in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior in 2019, as selected by a review committee of the journal,” said Dr. Gary Landsberg, Fear Free research portfolio director. “They will be focused on improving pet welfare, in two categories: Fear Free Veterinary Visits and Fear Free Happy Homes. We hope that with these awards we can further encourage and acknowledge Fear Free-related research and its awareness through publication in peer-reviewed veterinary journals.”

Full abstracts of each award and grant, and instructions on submitting proposals can be found at
Fear Free LLC
Kathie Kerr