Organization for Human-Animal Interaction Research in the News


March 2018 | The Washington Post

For military veterans suffering from PTSD, are service dogs good therapy?

For military veterans suffering from PTSD, are service dogs good therapy?

The O'Haire lab has preliminary scientific results from a pilot study that PTSD service dogs are effective and is currently conducting a clinical trial with funding from the National Institutes of Health. Concurrently the VA is conducting a wide-scale study although this study has drawn significant criticism. This article reviews the current status of scientific research of service dogs for military veterans with PTSD.

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February 2018 | Purdue University

Study shows service dogs are associated with lower PTSD symptoms among war veterans

Study shows service dogs are associated with lower PTSD symptoms among war veterans

The O'Haire lab with funding from the Human Animal Bond Research Institute and Bayer Animal Health conduct a pilot study providing scientific evidence of the mental health benefits for military veterans with PTSD who have service dogs. Results showed that veterans with service dogs had lower levels of PTSD symptomology, depression, and anxiety than those without a service dog. This study was done with the help of K9s For Warriors, an accredited nonprofit service dog organization for veterans. See a youtube video explaining the study!

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December 2017 | Today

When kids battle cancer, therapy dogs can benefit entire family, study finds

When kids battle cancer, therapy dogs can benefit entire family, study finds

The O'Haire lab and American Humane conduct the first and largest randomized controlled study with kids with cancer and therapy dogs. Results showed that all children's' stress decreased overtime, regardless if they had a therapy dog visit or not. Parent stress levels improved even further. Also, there were no adverse events showing the safety of this therapy.

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July 2017 | Inside INdiana Business

Purdue Sniffing Out the Science of PTSD Service Dogs

Purdue Sniffing Out the Science of PTSD Service Dogs

The O'Haire lab receives $525,000 in funding from NIH and Merrick Pet Care to conduct a study on PTSD service dogs.

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April 2017 | Time Magazine

Science says your pet is good for your mental health

Science Says Your Pet Is Good for Your Mental health

In addition to improving your physical health, studies are starting show that pets can also help improve mental health, even for people with challenging disorders. These results are helping to show that animal-assisted interventions can be used alongside conventional medicine.

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June 2016 | ABC News - Australia

Life getting you down? There are always dogs

Life getting you down? There are always dogs

Studies have shown they can help reduce anxiety and depression, as well as the symptoms of PTSD, which is why they are commonly paired with veterans (though they are not a replacement for counselling and medication).

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June 2016 | The New York Times

In a Shaken Orlando, Comfort Dogs Arrive With ‘Unconditional Love’

In a Shaken Orlando, Comfort Dogs Arrive With ‘Unconditional Love’

While it’s not entirely clear whether comfort animals provide long-term benefits to those in pain, studies have shown that they can help to reduce feelings of anxiety and depression as well as the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.

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May 2016 | Indiana CTSI

TL1 Postdoctoral Training and Young Investigator Training Award recipients announced

TL1 Postdoctoral Training and Young Investigator Training Award recipients announced

The Indiana CTSI recently announced its 2016-17 TL1 Postdoctoral Training Award and Young Investigator Training Award recipients.

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April 2016 | ABC News

Marine Is on a Mission to Provide Veterans Suffering From PTSD With Service Dogs

Marine Is on a Mission to Provide Veterans Suffering From PTSD With Service Dogs

He pointed to several studies including research conducted by Purdue University on animal-assisted intervention for victims of trauma.

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December 2015 | The Guardian

Paws for Thought: How Pet Therapy is Gaining Traction

Paws for Thought: How Pet Therapy is Gaining Traction

"In the area of therapy animals, practice is far outpacing research. People think it works and like the idea of it, so they do it," explains Maggie O’Haire, assistant professor of human-animal interaction at Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine.

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November 2015 | National Public Radio

Autism and Companion Animals

Autism and Companion Animals

Marguerite O’Haire — who teaches courses in human-animal interaction at the Center for the Human Animal Bond — discusses research about autism and companion animals.

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October 2015 | The New York Times

Campuses Debate Rising Demands for ‘Comfort Animals’

Campuses Debate Rising Demands for ‘Comfort Animals’

Research on the therapeutic value of animals is limited. Some studies have shown that they can provide a short-term benefit, particularly in reducing anxiety and depression. A long-term therapeutic benefit, however, has not been definitively established by randomized control trials.

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July 2015 | WLFI TV

Purdue professor looking to expand research on service dogs

Purdue professor looking to expand research on service dogs

Purdue Assistant Professor Dr. Marguerite O’Haire received a one-year grant in April to lead a study on the subject. O’Haire is focusing on post 9/11 veterans with PTSD or a traumatic brain injury. She said veterans have told her how they think the dogs help them, so that’s what she will study.

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June 2015 | The New York Times

Guinea Pigs Are Autistic Child’s Best Friend

Guinea Pigs Are Autistic Child’s Best Friend

The project began because the lead researcher, Marguerite E. O’Haire, now an assistant professor at the Center for the Human-Animal Bond at Purdue University, wondered whether there were measurable benefits to having animals in the classroom, a common practice.

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May 2015 | US News & World Report

Animals May Ease Social Anxiety in Children With Autism

Animals May Ease Social Anxiety in Children With Autism

This could be because pets offer unqualified acceptance and make children with autism feel more secure, according to Marguerite O'Haire, from the Center for the Human-Animal Bond in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind., and colleagues.

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May 2015 | Boston Globe

Need to relax a little? Try getting a pet

Need to relax a little? Try getting a pet

Even fish can have that effect on people, which is why so many doctors’ offices have fish tanks, said Marguerite E. O’Haire, an assistant professor of human-animal interaction at Purdue University’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

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May 2015 | Neuroscience News

Presence of Animals Eases Social Anxiety in Children with Autism

Presence of Animals Eases Social Anxiety in Children with Autism

The study, published online in Developmental Psychobiology, was conducted by Marguerite O’Haire, Ph.D., from the Center for the Human-Animal Bond in the College of Veterinary Medicine of Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, and colleagues in the School of Psychology at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.

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March 2015 | Chicago Tribune

Zoo experience unlocks new life for girl with disabilities

Zoo experience unlocks new life for girl with disabilities

Marguerite O'Haire, assistant professor at Purdue University's Human-Animal Interaction Research group, has been studying the subject for about a decade. In a study she published in 2013, O'Haire concluded that children with autism spectrum disorder were more social in the presence of guinea pigs than in the presence of toys.

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