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Animal Behavior and Welfare


Coordinator : Prof.ssa Barbara Padalino

Members :

Umberto Bernabucci, Marta Brscic, Mariangela Caroprese, Claudio Forte, Aristide Maggiolino, Giovanna Martelli, Silvana Mattiello, Michela Minero, Giuliana Parisi, Alessandra Roncarati, Angela Salzano, Erminio Trevisi, Angela Trocino, Luca Turini.

Elisabetta Canali, Emanuele D'Anza, Martina Tarantola.

Goals :

  • To integrate the skills present within ASPA on the topics indicated and, where necessary, to identify external interlocutors to involve in supporting the work of the Commission itself;

  • To carry out a critical analysis of what is present in the literature on the points identified and on other aspects considered of primary interest by the Commission, creating at least one document to be published as a Review in the Journal of the Association;

  • To relate with the productive world by promoting meetings (conferences, seminars) on the occasion of the main trade fair events in the sector and on other occasions that the Commission, in agreement with the Board, considers useful;

  • To identify a path that can lead to the creation of a textbook on animal welfare to be recommended to students because it is suitable for supporting the action of teachers in the main courses activated, accompanied by guidelines to suggest to teachers.

Activities 2022-2023:


The Animal Behavior and Welfare Commission was officially established at the end of February 2022 and has met three times to date (10 March, 28 March and 13 May). In the first meeting, the members introduced themselves, the coordination was unanimously confirmed to Dr. Padalino, a secretary was appointed (Dr. Emanuele Danza), and possible themes/activities to work on were identified. Between the first and second meeting, a shared point was created, in which the members of the commission were invited to include other possible activities and to indicate their availability on the various topics. At the third meeting it was defined that there will be a leader for each activity which will be completed in subgroups to make the commission's work streamlined. There will be monthly meetings for a quick update on the various activities.


The designated activities are as follows:

  • Development of a common curriculum to teach animal welfare in the different study courses (leader. Prof Padalino)

  • Writing of a document on training on the welfare of animals intended for animal testing (leader. Prof. Trevisi)

  • Work to streamline the procedures for requesting animal ethics and use of animals in research (leader. Prof Trevisi)

  • Writing of a book with an educational purpose on animal welfare (leader. Prof Minero)

  • Organization of webinars on news regarding animal welfare following the mandates that the EU addresses to EFSA (leader. Prof Marta Brscic). First webinar on calf welfare to be scheduled in October 2022

  • Drafting of scientific reviews, one for each animal species, in which members are divided based on interest and expertise. The reviews will have a common template that will be developed by Prof Padalino and will detail roadmaps of the gaps of knowledge and possible research necessary to improve knowledge on animal welfare.

  • Creation of a database of calls and grants relating to animal welfare and behavior to offer opportunities for common applications on these issues, with the aim of increasing the number of grants presented by ASPA members in this topic.

The commission unanimously decided to dedicate all its works (book, webinars, reviews etc) to the beloved Prof Fabio Napolitano, proponent of the commission, who suddenly passed away. Appropriate initiatives will be evaluated (e.g. naming the commission in honor of him, setting up an award in honor of him in future ASPA conferences on the topic of animal welfare and behavior) together with the ASPA board of directors.



Padalino B, Zappaterra M, Felici M, Ricci-Bonot C., Nanni Costa L., Houpt K., Tateo A. Factors associated with house-soiling in Italian cats. Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery. 2023;25(11). doi:10.1177/1098612X231202482

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