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Qualitative Behavioural Assessment and Potential Uses in Veterinary Practice

Qualitative behavioural assessment (QBA) assesses holistic welfare using qualitative methods; an animal is observed, and a list of behavioural descriptors is scored according to the observer’s subjective interpretation of the animal’s demeanour. However, it is difficult to ascertain as to whether welfare assessment in veterinary practice can become a formalised interaction between veterinary practitioner, owner and animal. Dr. Lisa M. Riley at the University of Winchester examines the process of qualitative behavioural assessment and considers its application during veterinary consultation and treatment.