Prof Cathy Dwyer

Session: Youngstock


Presentation: Management of young farmed livestock: why it matters and what can be done to optimise development



Professor Cathy Dwyer is head of the Animal Behaviour and Welfare Research Team (about 35 people) at Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) in Edinburgh.

The work of the team addresses animal welfare problems and seeks solutions for all the major farmed species, and is one of the largest animal welfare research groups in Europe. Cathy’s research interests include maternal behaviour, offspring development and neonatal survival, pain and the welfare of animals kept in extensive management conditions.

Her work spans fundamental understanding of the biology of behaviour and stress to application in the field where she works closely with advisers and consultants to provide solutions to welfare problems. She has been involved in several interdisciplinary and participative research projects, which have engaged with farmers and other stakeholders to co-construct the project, address welfare problems and develop on farm solutions derived bottom-up.

Since 2016 Cathy is also the Director of the Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies at the University of Edinburgh. The Centre provides animal welfare education for veterinarians, and other groups, in UK and overseas, particularly in Asia, and seeks to improve the lives of animals through veterinary education.

In 2013 Cathy was awarded the BSAS/RSPCA award for outstanding contribution to animal welfare, and she is a member of the EU Animal Welfare Platform. She teaches on the MSc programmes in Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare, and the online programme in International Animal Welfare Ethics and Law, and is currently supervising 8 PhD students.