Anthrozoology: The best college major you've never heard of
What is anthrozoology? And why should we study it? Dr Anne Perkins a professor at Carroll College in Helena, Montana answers these questions and more in this TedTalk presentation.
The relationships between humans and animals go back tens of thousands of years, but until about 40 years ago, most behavioral research focused on animal behavior. Then, a group of scientists, including Dr. Anne Perkins, decided to study how animals and humans interact with each other and thus was born anthrozoology. Dr Perkins created the Human-Animal Bond Program at Carroll College and it grew to become the first undergraduate degree of its kind in the US.
In this video Dr Perkins explains how anthrozoology is the ‘scientific and scholarly study of human-animal interactions’, and how it differs from traditional animal-centred studies such as veterinary medicine, animal science and wildlife biology.
“We care about both ends of the leash, both ends of the lead rope and both ends of the binoculars”
She also discusses how applied anthrozoology can be put into practice in the many ways in which humans and animals interact, from family pets to therapy animals used to enhance human physical and mental health.