Quality of Life assessment tools – Assessing Quality of Life

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2. Assessing Quality of Life

Published 31 August 2021 | Updated 15 May 2024

While the concept of quality of life is easily understood reliable measurement is more complicated. The following references discuss some of the challenges, and introduce the idea of using technology to help.

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  • Scott, E.M. et al (2007) Can we really measure animal quality of life? Methodologies for measuring quality of life in people and other animals. Animal Welfare, 16 (S) , pp. 17-24. https://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/ufaw/aw/2007/00000016/a00102s1/art00004  [Available from: https://www.newmetrica.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Scott-et-al-2007.pdf, accessed 28 August 2021]
  • Schneider, T.R. et al (2010) Multidimensional quality of life and human–animal bond measures for companion dogs. Journal of Veterinary Behavior, 5 (6), pp. 287-301. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jveb.2010.06.002
  • Spofford, N. et al (2013) Should the veterinary profession invest in developing methods to assess quality of life in healthy dogs and cats? Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 243 (7), pp. 952-956. https://doi.org/10.2460/javma.243.7.952
  • Mullan, S. (2015) Assessment of quality of life in veterinary practice: developing tools for companion animal carers and veterinarians. Veterinary Medicine: Research and Reports, 6, p. 203. https://doi.org/10.2147/VMRR.S62079
  • Belshaw, Z. (2018) Quality of life assessment in companion animals: what, why, who, when and how. Companion Animal, 23 (5), pp. 264-268. https://doi.org/10.12968/coan.2018.23.5.264
    Belshaw, Z. and Yeates, J. (2018) Assessment of quality of life and chronic pain in dogs. The Veterinary Journal, 239, pp. 59-64. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tvjl.2018.07.010
    An inFOCUS summary of this article is available
  • Giammarino, M. et al (2021) Evaluation of Inter-Observer Reliability of Animal Welfare Indicators: Which Is the Best Index to Use? Animals, 11 (5), p. 1445. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11051445
  • Main, D.C.J. et al (2014) Best practice framework for animal welfare certification schemes. Trends in Food Science & Technology, 37 (2), pp. 127-136. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tifs.2014.03.009
  • Whay, H.R. et al (2003) Assessment of the welfare of dairy cattle using animal‐based measurements: direct observations and investigation of farm records. Veterinary Record, 153 (7), pp. 197-202. https://doi.org/10.1136/vr.153.7.197
  • Neethirajan, S. (2021) The Use of Artificial Intelligence in assessing affective states in livestock. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 8, p. 879. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2021.715261
  • Grandin, T. (2022) Practical application of the Five Domains Animal Welfare Framework for supply food animal chain managers. Animals, 12 (20), p. 2831. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12202831
  • Stokes, J.E. et al. (2022) A “Good Life” for dairy cattle: Developing and piloting a framework for assessing positive welfare opportunities based on scientific evidence and farmer expertise. Animals, 12 (19, p. 2540. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12192540
  • Thomann, B. et al. (2023) Development of a data-driven method for assessing health and welfare in the most common livestock species in Switzerland: The Smart Animal Health project. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 10, no. 1125806. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2023.1125806
  • Stygar, A.H. et al (2021) A systematic review on commercially available and validated sensor technologies for welfare assessment of dairy cattle. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 8, p. 177. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2021.634338
  • Russell, A.L. et al. (2023) Use of qualitative behavioural assessment to investigate affective states of housed dairy cows under different environmental conditions. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 10, no. 1099170. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2023.1099170
  • Fulmer, A.E., Laven, L.J. and Hill, K.E. (2022)  Quality of Life measurement in dogs and cats: A scoping review of generic tools. Animals, 12 (3), 400. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12030400
  • Annan, R. et al. (2023) Racehorse welfare across a training season. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 10. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2023.1208744
  • Rowland, M. et al. (2022) The welfare of traveller and gypsy owned horses in the UK and Ireland. Animals, 12 (8), p. 2402. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12182402
  • Tappe-Theodor, A. et al (2022) The “WWHow” Concept for Prospective Categorization of Post-operative Severity Assessment in Mice and Rats. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 9, 841431. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2022.841431
  • Liu, J. et al (2022) Nonintrusive and automatic quantitative analysis methods for fish behaviour in aquaculture. Aquaculture Research, 53 (8), pp. 2985-3000. https://doi.org/10.1111/are.15828
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