This course enables students to develop a comprehensive understanding of how aspects of physiology, neurobiology, development and genetics influence the behavior of domestic dogs. Evolution and domestication will be explored as contextual reference for some behavior problems, and differentiated from true abnormal behavior. Emphasis will be on interpreting scientific experiments in canine biology.
Students who complete this course will have a working knowledge of learning theory and how the biology of dogs affects behavior. Course topics include:
- Behavior and ecology of domestic and wild dogs
- Theories of domestication
- Sensory perception and its relationship to behavior
- Body language and communication
- The brain and behavior
- Morphological and behavioral genetics
- Genetic disorders of domestic dogs
- Social, biological, and behavioral development of dogs
- Applied behavior and training methods
- Understanding abnormal and problem behaviors
This course has online exams that require a proctor. Online proctoring is available through ProctorU. For traditional site-based proctoring, a Proctor Identification Form will be required.
LIFE 103 (Biology of Organisms - Animals and Plants) or BZ 110 (Principles of Animal Biology).
Textbook and Materials
Textbooks and materials can be purchased at the CSU Bookstore unless otherwise indicated.
- The Behavioural Biology of Dogs. Oxfordshire, UK. CAB International (2007)
Jennie Willis Marko
Dr. Jennie Willis Marko grew up in Colorado as a child and then returned for graduate school later in her life. She graduated from Colorado State University in 2005 with a Ph.D. in zoology, with an emphasis in animal behavior.
Dr. Willis teaches undergraduate courses in dog behavior and instructs veterinary students in applied companion animal behavior at CSU. She also teaches veterinary technician students at Front Range Community College. She is an instructor of veterinary continuing education modules offered online through CSU.
Dr. Willis owns a private consulting business, Animal Behavior Insights, that helps dog and cat owners improve their pet's behavior. She has given numerous scientific and invited presentations, and is an active speaker for professional groups and organizations. She co-advises the veterinary student behavior club, which won the 2010 AVSAB Student Chapter Award.
Dr. Willis is a member of the Animal Behavior Society and the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior.
In her spare time, Dr. Willis enjoys spending time with her family hiking, swimming and adventuring in the Colorado mountains.
Learn more at: http://www.AnimalBehaviorInsights.com