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To report, or not to report animal abuse: The role of perceived self-efficacy in veterinarians’ decision-making

Alleyne, Emma, Sienauskaite, Ornela, Ford, Jade (2019) To report, or not to report animal abuse: The role of perceived self-efficacy in veterinarians’ decision-making. Veterinary Record, 185 (17). Article Number 538. ISSN 0042-4900. (doi:10.1136/vr.105077) (KAR id:78023)

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Background: Veterinarians are on the frontline of animal welfare, but little is known about the factors that facilitate their decision to report cases of abuse to authorities. Using perceived self-efficacy as a basis, the primary aim of this study was to examine the psychological and experiential factors linked to veterinarians’ reporting behaviour.

Method: We administered questionnaires to 176 veterinarians assessing the amount of training received on detecting/reporting animal abuse, perceived self-efficacy to report animal abuse, and whether they have reported animal abuse incidents to the relevant authorities.

Results: We found that perceived self-efficacy positively correlated with suspecting and reporting animal abuse, number of hours of specialised training, and years working in practice. As hypothesised, we also found that perceived self-efficacy explained the relationship between specialised training (in hours) and reporting animal abuse.

Conclusions: These findings highlight the psychological impact of specialised training on veterinarians’ reporting behaviour. Simply put, specialist training equips veterinarians with the confidence and self-efficacy to report suspected cases of animal abuse. The implications for training curriculum and veterinary policy are discussed.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1136/vr.105077
Uncontrolled keywords: Animal abuse, non-accidental injury, veterinary curriculum, reporting behaviour
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Emma Alleyne
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2019 08:23 UTC
Last Modified: 08 Jan 2024 20:09 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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