Encyclopedia of Animal Cognition and Behavior

Living Edition
| Editors: Jennifer Vonk, Todd Shackelford

Human-Animal Interaction

  • Elise R. ThayerEmail author
  • Jeffrey R. Stevens
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-47829-6_2058-1


Human-animal interaction captures the mutual and dynamic exchanges between humans and other animals and their psychophysiological effects on humans (Griffin et al. 2011). Types of human-animal interaction include affiliative interactions (e.g., pet ownership), animal-assisted interventions, and service animals.


Contact between humans and other animals – human-animal interaction (HAI) – involves the mutual and dynamic exchanges between people and animals and their psychophysiological impact on individuals (Griffin et al. 2011). Though originally focusing on cardiovascular benefits of companion animals, researchers from a host of scientific fields – ranging from clinical and experimental psychology to public health and veterinary medicine – have demonstrated a wide range of positive effects of HAI on human health and well-being. A taxonomy of HAI categorizes it into the affiliative relationships between humans and animals, animal-assisted interventions, and use...
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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychology, Center for Brain, Biology and BehaviorUniversity of Nebraska-LincolnLincolnUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Jennifer Vonk
    • 1
  1. 1.Oakland UniversityRochesterUSA