CALL FOR PAPERS
Pedigree Chums: The Dog in 20thC Science - Science in the 20thC Dog
Friday 26 June 2015, CHSTM, University of Manchester
The twentieth century witnessed the arrival of the modern dog. By ‘modern dog’ we mean a domesticated canine, which became increasingly pedigree-bred, convenience food fed, obedience trained and veterinary managed.
Biological and medical knowledge informed and facilitated the making of the modern dog. Genetics was crucial and this continues today with work on the dog genome. The creation of pet food industry, underpinned by nutrition research centres, transformed the ways dogs were fed, while training switched from negative to positive reinforcement altering companion relations. The rise of companion animal veterinary practice transformed the sick dog into a patient upon whom a rapidly expanding range of medical treatments was brought to bear. With these developments came new concerns and tensions, for example, health problems from close breeding and injurious conformation standards; public health concerns about toxocariasis; new policies to control fouling and dangerous dogs; and ethical debates on the scope and limits of veterinary intervention.
This is a call for papers for an interdisciplinary meeting on the history of dogs in science and science in dogs in the twentieth century. We have titled our meeting of 'Pedigree Chums' because it nicely captures our twin aims of a meeting:
(i) to explain the remaking of dogs in the twentieth-century as pedigree bred, convenience food fed, obedience-trained, and veterinary managed; and
(ii)to explore how these changes were shaped, and were shaped by, new companionship relations between dogs and people.
We invite papers that explore critically why and how the dog has been 'remade', materially and culturally through changes in breeding, feeding, training and treating, particularly through the impact of genetics, nutritional science, ethology and psychology, and veterinary medicine. We also invite contributions on the place of the dog in biomedical research. It is often forgotten nowadays how important the dog was as animal model for human disease in the early twentieth century, most strikingly in the discovery of insulin and vitamins. Such work continued, notoriously so with beagles in research on the health effects of cigarette smoking. Our second aim is to discuss critically changing companion relations – in the home and on the street, in the dog fancy, in popular culture, and in the imagination.
The Dog in 20thC Science
• Animal models of disease
• Behavioural research
Science in the 20thC Dog
• Breeding – genetics to genomics
• Feeding – physiology and nutritional science
• Training – animal psychology and behavioural science
• Treating – veterinary medicine
20thC Companion Relationships
• Living with dogs in private and public spaces
• Dogs and public health issues (rabies, toxocariasis)
• Dangerous dogs – Dangerous breeds
We hope this will be a truly interdisciplinary meeting and one that brings together researchers from all career stages, including research students. We will be applying for conference funding and hope to able to offer some support to those giving papers. Also, we will apply for veterinary continuing professional development credit with the RCVS.
Please send abstracts, with a maximum of 300 words, to Professor Michael Worboys ([log in to unmask] ) by 28 February 2015.