Strengthening our bond to improve animals' lives

Position Statements

Resources / About: Position Statements

Position Statements and Handouts (for the public)

These position statements were developed through the cooperation of the members of the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB) and reflect the opinion of this association on a variety of topics related to the field of animal behavior.

If you would like to order color copies of any of the position statements below, click here to download the order form. Return the form with payment to Dr. Sally Foote, and we will ship them to you:

Positive Vet Visit Position Statement

AVSAB promotes positive interactions between pets and people. We believe all people—even vets!—can learn better ways to interact with our animals.

This paper explains the down side of the stress animals experience when they visit our clinics, and offers suggestions and resources for the entire veterinary team to reduce the stress and increase the fun.


dominance_theoryDominance Position Statement

This statement has been developed for the purpose of clarifying how AVSAB views the theory of dominance relationships between animals. We also hope that it helps to dispel some myths that have recently become more prevalent among some who work in this field.


punishmentPunishment Position Statement

This statement focuses on the use of punishment in the training of animals and the learning theories that exist which put the use of punishment into proper perspective.


puppy_socializationPuppy Socialization Position Statement

This statement hopes to increase awareness of the need for socialization in puppies and raise the issue of how vaccination protocols affect the socialization process in puppy classes.


Blue dog copyHow to Choose a Trainer Handout

This handout goes over guidelines for choosing a dog trainer so you and your dog can have a great experience.


BSL_PhotoBreed Specific Legislation Position Statement

This statement was developed as a review of the efficacy of breed-specific legislation, and AVSAB’s position on these policies.


AVSAB Position StatementAVSAB Response Statement to Cesar 911

This statement was developed as response to the episode of the television show Cesar 911 which raised questions about the use of humane training methods.