Bristol University has appointed Emily Blackwell to the position of Dogs Trust Lecturerin Companion Animal Behaviour. Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest caninewelfare charity, will fund the post.

Dr Emily Blackwell

In her new role, Dr Blackwell – from the university’s departmentof clinical veterinary science – will be responsible for setting up a tailored Dogs Trust training course at the University of Bristol for staff of the charity.

The course will be tailored for the needs of dogs in the rescue environment, providing a training standard across its 17 rehoming centres. The position will also involve developing a programme of research with Dogs Trust to further understand canine behaviour and welfare.

Dr Blackwell will also be on hand to advise staff at the specialist Dogs Trust STAR (Special Training And Rehabilitation) centre at the Evesham rehoming centre. The centre houses dogs with significant behaviour challenges and works to overcome these with careful assessment to deal with the causes as well as the symptoms.

Chris Laurence, veterinary director of Dogs Trust, said: “Dr Blackwell is an outstanding addition to the Dogs Trust team. As an established behaviourist in the Bristol group – the leading university centre – she will bring a wealth of expertise to the charity. Our behavioural staff are highly trained but at the current time there is no standardisation to this training.”

Dr Blackwell says: “I am delighted to be involved with Dogs Trust in the creation of a new training standard for its staff. I welcome the opportunity to assist the staff with behaviour therapy for dogs that might otherwise have found it difficult to be rehomed.”

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