Office: VBR 115
Phone: (509) 335-2957 or (509) 335-5059
In the Newberry laboratory, our research concerns the behavior
and well-being of animals, with a focus on environmental enrichment,
social behavior, and human-animal interactions. We use behavioral
measures such as vocalizations, exploration, and play to assess
affective states. We also investigate animal preferences, motivations,
and decision-making to gain insights into the inner subjective lives of
animals. Our goal is to develop methods for improving animal care
through environmental enrichment, social grouping strategies, handling
and training methods, and housing design. We also seek methods to
prevent and control abnormal behavior. We work with a variety of species
in agricultural, laboratory, and zoo settings, as well as with companion
A current focus is identifying factors contributing to the
development and expression of injurious behavior in animals. We are
characterizing the behavioral, morphological and neurobiological
characteristics of aggressive and cannibalistic individuals with the aim
of understanding the mechanisms underlying these behaviors. The role of
individual and social learning in the spread of injurious behaviors is
also under investigation. This information is used to develop humane
animal management systems that reduce the risk of animal injury and
promote animal well-being.
Ruth C. Newberry, Associate Professor, received her B.Sc. in biology and
her Ph.D. in agriculture from the University of Edinburgh in 1979 and
1983, respectively. She held a fellowship from the Natural Sciences and
Engineering Research Council of Canada at the Pacific Agri-Food Research
Centre in Agassiz, British Columbia from 1983-1985. She was subsequently
employed there as a research scientist until 1996, when she joined the
faculty of the Departments of IPN and Animal Sciences. She was the first
faculty member appointed in the Center for the Study of Animal
She is a Past President of the International Society for Applied
and is currently a scientific advisor to various groups addressing
issues of farm animal well-being.
V., Iacobucci, P. and Newberry, R.C. 2010. Vocal and locomotor
responses of piglets to social isolation and reunion.
Developmental Psychobiology 52, 1-12.
Cloutier, S. and Newberry, R.C. 2010.
Physiological and behavioural responses of laboratory
rats housed at different tier levels and levels of visual contact with
conspecifics and humans.
Appl Anim Behav Sci.
McGowan, R.T.S., Robbins, C.T., Alldredge, J.R., and Newberry, R.C.
2009. Contrafreeloading in grizzly bears: implications for environmental
enrichment. Zoo Biology 28, 1-19.
Thogerson, C.M., Hester, P.Y., Mench, J.A.,
Newberry, R.C., Okura,
C.M., Pajor, E.A., Talaty, P.N. and Garner, J.P. 2009. The effect of
feeder space allocation on productivity and physiology of Hy-line W36
hens housed in conventional cages. Poultry Science 88, 1793â€“1799.
Thogerson, C.M., Hester, P.Y., Mench, J.A.,
Newberry, R.C., Pajor,
E.A. and Garner, J.P. 2009. The effect of feeder space allocation on
behavior of Hy-line W36 hens housed in conventional cages. Poultry
Science 88, 1544-1552.
Newberry, R.C. and Swanson, J.C. 2008. Implications of breaking mother-young
social bonds. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 110, 3-23.
Cloutier, S. and Newberry, R.C. 2008. The use of a
conditioning technique to reduce the physiological and behavioural
stress associated with repeated intra-peritoneal injections in rats.
Applied Animal Behaviour Science 112, 158-173.
Dennis, R., Newberry, R.C., Cheng, H-W. and Estevez, I. 2008.
Appearance matters: artificial marking alters aggression and stress.
Poultry Science 87, 1939-1946.
Wibowo, T.A., Gaskins, C.T., Newberry, R.C., Thorgaard, G.H.,
Michal, J.J. and Jiang, Z. 2008. Genome assembly anchored QTL map
of bovine chromosome 14. International
Journal of Biological Sciences 4, 406-414.
Croney, C. and Newberry, R.C. 2007. Group size and cognitive
processes. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 103, 215-228.
Newberry, R.C., Keeling, L.J., Estevez, I. and
2007. Behaviour when young as a predictor of
severe feather pecking in adult laying hens: the redirected foraging
Applied Animal Behaviour Science
Gifford, A.K., Cloutier, S. and Newberry, R.C. 2007.
Objects as enrichment: effects of object exposure time and delay
interval on object recognition memory of the domestic pig. Applied
Animal Behaviour Science 107, 206-217.
Other Selected Publications
2004. Cannibalism. pp. 239-258. In: Welfare of the Laying Hen. Ed. by
G.C. Perry, CABI Publishing, Wallingford UK.
Cloutier S., Newberry, R.C., Honda, K. and Alldredge, J.R. 2002.
Cannibalistic behaviour spread by social learning. Animal Behaviour 63,
Donaldson, T.M., Newberry, R.C., Spinka, M. and Cloutier, S.
2002. Effects of early play experience on play behaviour of piglets
after weaning. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 79, 221-231.
Spinka, M., Newberry, R.C. and Bekoff, M. 2001. Mammalian
play: training for the unexpected. The Quarterly Review of Biology
Newberry, R.C., Estevez, I. and Keeling, L.J. 2001. Group
size and perching behaviour in young domestic fowl. Applied Animal
Behaviour Science 73, 117-129.
Sustr P., Spinka, M., Cloutier, S. and Newberry, R.C. 2001.
Computer-aided method for calculating animal configurations during
social interactions from x, y coordinates of color-marked body parts.
Behavior Research Methods, Instruments, and Computers 33, 364-370.
Cambridge, A.J., Tobias, K.M., Newberry, R.C. and Sarkar, D.K.
2000. Evaluation of subjective and objective measurements of
postoperative pain in cats. Journal of the American Veterinary
Medical Association 217, 685-690.
Newberry, R.C. 1999. Exploratory behaviour of young
domestic fowl. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 63, 311-321.
Newberry, R.C., Webster, A.B., Lewis, N.J. and Van Arnam, C.
1999. Management of spent hens. Journal of Applied Animal
Welfare Science 2, 13-29.
Newberry, R.C. and Shackleton, D.M. 1997. Use of cover by
domestic fowl: a Venetian blind effect? Animal Behaviour 54,
Mendl, M. and Newberry, R.C. 1997. Social conditions.
pp. 191-203. In: Animal Welfare. Ed. by M.C. Appleby and B.O.
Hughes, CAB International, Oxfordshire UK.
1995. Environmental enrichment: increasing the biological relevance of
captive environments. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 44,
Newberry, R.C., Wood-Gush, D.G.M. and Hall, J.W. 1988.
Playful behaviour of piglets. Behavioural Processes 17, 205-216.
Newberry, R.C. and Wood-Gush, D.G.M. 1986. Social
relationships of piglets in a semi-natural environment. Animal
Behaviour 34, 1311-1318.
Newberry, R.C. and Wood-Gush, D.G.M. 1985. The suckling
behaviour of domestic pigs in a semi-natural environment.
Behaviour 95, 11-25.
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