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Study shows wolves are more socially tolerant than dogs
The study found that, when kept in the same conditions, wolves are more prosocial than their domestic counterparts.

Researchers compare the behaviour of dogs and wolves raised in groups

Wolves are more socially tolerant and cooperative with their fellow pack members than dogs, according to new research.

A study published in the journal PLOS ONE concludes that, when kept in the same conditions, wolves are more prosocial to their in-group partners than dogs.

Prosocial behaviour is a type of action that benefits others. It is not a uniquely human behaviour, as studies show that some primates and dogs also have prosocial tendencies.

Some domestication hypotheses suggest that dogs have been selected for their cooperative tendencies, indicating that dogs should be more prosocial than wolves.

Other hypotheses, however, suggest that prosocial behaviour is a trait derived from dogs’ ancestors. Wolves are the closest living relatives of dogs and, because they rely so heavily on cooperation, it has led to the opinion that wolves are more prosocial than dogs.

To investigate this further, researchers from Vetmeduni Vienna compared the prosocial behaviours of six dogs and nine wolves raised in groups by the University’s Wolf Science Centre.

The animals were trained to choose a ‘giving’ symbol, which delivered a food reward to an adjacent receiver enclosure, over a ‘control’ symbol which provided no food reward. The animals could choose between the two options by pressing their nose on a touch screen device.

Researchers found that wolves acted prosocially to in-group partners, providing significantly more food compared to a control where the partner had no access to food.

‘In sum, when kept in the same conditions, wolves are more prosocial than their domestic counterpart, further supporting suggestions that reliance on cooperation is a driving force for prosocial attitudes,’ the researchers conclude.

'The fact that wolves, but not dogs, were prosocial in the same task corroborates other findings that wolves are more tolerant with food sharing, a naturalistic measure of prosociality, than dogs.'

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Celebrity chefs urge public to get baking to support Cats Protection fundraiser

News Story 1
 In support of Cats Protection's Pawsome Afternoon Tea fundraiser, Masterchef winner Tim Anderson and Great British Bake Off star Kim-Joy have shared biscuit recipes to help keen bakers raise money for needy cats across April.

The celebrity chefs are both cat owners and have said that they hope this fundraiser will help to raise awareness of cats in need and the importance of adopting a cat, rather than buying one.

This is the fourth year Cats Protection has run its Pawsome Afternoon Tea campaign, which encourages people to hold tea parties, bake sales and fundraising events to help raise money for the charity.

To view the recipes and other fundraising resources please visit the Cats Protection website. 

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BEVA offering free membership to vet students

The British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) is offering free membership to veterinary students. As part of a new initiative with the aim of encouraging more veterinary professionals into equine practice.

According to BEVA, less than one in ten veterinary students choose to work in equine practice. The association hopes that this initiative will provide insight into the field and the benefits of a career in equine medicine.

Benefits of membership include:
▪ access to a network of nearly 3,000 members
▪ special student rates to attend BEVA Congress
▪ online access to BEVA's Equine Veterinary Education (EVE) journal
▪ free access to the association's online learning platform
▪ free access to BEVA's practical veterinary apps
▪ exclusive discounts on a range of things from cinema tickets to grocery shopping.

BEVA will be releasing a series of short videos over the next few months from BEVA Council members, explaining what inspired them to work in equine practice.

Image (c) BEVA.