influence intention and attitude toward speeding, with normlessness directly and positively influencing RBD

Measurement instruments

Five survey instruments were used to evaluate owner personality and psychological status, training methods, and dog behavior/temperament:

  • The 10-item Personality Inventory (TIPI), an abbreviated and previously validated measure of the ‘Big Five’ dimensions of human (owner) personality: agreeablenessconscientiousnessemotional stabilityextraversion, and openness to experience [30]. Use of the TIPI is recommended when a relatively short measure is needed to avoid overburdening participants, and when the slightly diminished psychometric properties of short measures are tolerable within the context of the study (
  • The Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) [31], a widely-used and validated, self-administered, 21-item diagnostic scale designed to measure levels of depression/mood disorder.
  • The Emotional Regulation Questionnaire (ERQ) [32], a validated 10-item scale designed to measure respondents’ tendency to regulate their emotions by either cognitively adjusting the meaning of emotionally evocative stimuli (cognitive reappraisal) or by suppressing the expression of emotions in social situations (expressive suppression). Previous work has demonstrated that reappraisal is associated with better interpersonal functioning, while suppression is associated with the opposite effect, including greater avoidance of close relationships [32].
  • An 8-item questionnaire about owners’ tendency to use forceful dog training methods, termed the Attitude to Training (ATT) scale (see Supporting information).
  • The 42-item or ‘mini’ version of the Canine Behavioral Assessment and Research Questionnaire (mini C-BARQ), an abbreviated version of the 100-item C-BARQ which is a validated assessment of canine temperament/behavior that measures 14 different behavioral subscales, as well as a number of stand-alone behaviors such as house-soiling and persistent barking [33].

We elected to use the TIPI and BDI because they are relatively brief, validated questionnaires with established psychometric credentials that are widely used to assess personality and depression/mood disorder, respectively. In studies of dog owners, the personality and emotional traits they measure have also been shown to be associated with canine behavior problems [811]. The decision to include the ERQ in the study was largely exploratory. People’s scores on the reappraisal and suppression scales of the ERQ have been shown to correlate with how well they function in social relationships [32]. It was therefore of interest to determine whether this might also apply to relationships with dogs. The C-BARQ is a widely-used and validated measure of behavior/behavior problems in dogs [3435]. The ‘mini’ version has been validated for use in shelter dogs [33] and was used in the current study due to its significantly smaller size (42 vs. 100 items) and the need to reduce the burden of questionnaire items on study participants. The ATT has not been previously tested for reliability and validity.

The survey instruments were posted in an easy-to-use online format as a unit on Vanderbilt University’s REDCap (Research Electronic Data Capture) platform. REDCap is a browser-based, metadata-driven EDC (electronic data capture) software solution and workflow methodology for designing clinical and translational research databases. REDCap was developed with the support of the NCRR and NIH and is utilized by more than 2,375 institutions in over 110 countries for academic research.

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