Human Animal Bond Research Institute: Human-Animal Interaction Research

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.

To advance this mission, the organization has issued an RFP for research on the health outcomes of pet ownership and/or animal-assisted activity or therapy, both for 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; and mental and 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 that address the role of companion animals in the lives of people during the COVID-19 pandemic are also of interest.

On average, HABRI awards five grants of up to $45,000 each over twenty months.

While HABRI is interested in studies that focus on the impacts of interactions with dogs, the organization welcomes studies that focus on interactions with other pet species, which may include but are not limited to cats, small animals (rabbits, guinea pigs, birds, and fish), and horses.

See the HABRI website for complete program guidelines and application instructions.