Posted: November 26, 2019

Full proposals due February 13, 2020

The vision of the Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) is for the human-animal bond to be universally embraced as an essential element of human wellness. To that end, HABRI works to establish the vital role of companion animals in the health and well-being of individuals, families and communities.

HABRI is calling for research proposals to investigate the health outcomes of pet ownership and/or animal-assisted activity or therapy, both for the people and the animals involved. Proposals should have a strong theoretical framework and focus on innovative approaches to studying the health effects of companion animals on humans within the following broad categories:

  • Child Health and Development
  • Healthy Aging
  • Mental & Physical Health and Wellness

In an effort to help address larger societal challenges, proposals that have potential to impact current public health crises or issues at the forefront of public concern are welcomed. Topics include (but are not limited to) social isolation and loneliness, suicide prevention, addiction, trauma and/or post-traumatic stress, obesity and heart health.

Proposals will be evaluated by an independent review board comprised of experts in the field. Evaluation will be based on study design, capabilities of investigators, adequacy of facilities, cost-effective yet realistic budget, potential for impact on the way mental and physical health conditions are diagnosed, treated or otherwise understood, and for potential impact and contribution to the scientific field of human-animal interaction. Adherence to the highest standards of human and animal care and welfare is essential. All funded studies must undergo IRB and/or IACUC review and approval.

While HABRI is interested in studies that focus on the impacts of interactions with dogs, in the interest of further contributing to the scientific field of human-animal interaction, HABRI welcomes studies that focus on interactions with other pet species, which may include (but are not limited to) cats and small animals (rabbits, guinea pigs, birds, and fish) and horses. No invasive procedures will be funded.

Read the full solicitation here.

Office of Grants and Contracts


107 Ag Administration Building
University Park, PA 16802