Abstract # 4322 Poster # 59:

Scheduled for Thursday, June 21, 2012 07:00 PM-09:00 PM: Session 9 (Gardenia) Poster Presentation


J. M. Worlein and R. U. Bellanca
Washington National Primate Res. Ctr., University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
     Detection and treatment of abnormal behaviors represents a significant challenge for behavioral management programs. A procedure to evaluate and treat abnormal/atypical behaviors has recently been implemented at the WaNPRC. Animals are referred to the behavior case manager in two ways. The first is from behavioral evaluations conducted quarterly on all NHPs by behavioral management technologists. These 10 minute observations record any instances of abnormal or atypical behavior from our Abnormal Behavior Taxonomy. The second is from referrals by veterinary staff, research personnel, animal care staff and behavioral management staff, who are trained to recognize and report these behaviors. Once a behavior case is referred, the behavior case manager makes an initial evaluation and ascertains whether the behavior in question falls under the predefined categories of atypical or abnormal and if it meets the criteria necessitating intervention. Quantitative observations using “The Observer” behavioral software are then conducted to determine the rates of abnormal/atypical behaviors. The behavior case manager then devises a behavioral treatment plan for the animal, often in collaboration with staff veterinarians. After treatment is initiated, follow-up quantitative observations are taken to assess the efficacy of treatment. Based on these observations, the treatment can be continued, revised, or the animal can be returned to routine monitoring status. Data will be presented for several case studies where we have evaluated efficacy of treatments.