Forthcoming events

IAHAIO Annual General Meeting, Saturday 12 September 2020, 7pm London time.

All IAHAIO members are invited to join us for the 2020 IAHAIO Annual General Meeting. This year the AGM will take place online via Zoom. Members were sent an invitation in July and August and asked to register online. A secure link to log-in to the meeting has now been sent to all attendees. The Agenda can be found here.

IAHAIO Conference, 19-21 June 2020, Poland


Conference postponement

After careful consideration and evaluation of the current information and advice regarding the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak, IAHAIO has decided to postpone its conference in Poland which was scheduled to take place 18-21 June 2020. We are working with our conference partner, SZL, to determine the exact date for the rescheduled conference and will announce this date in due course.  People who have already registered for the conference will receive a refund of their fee.  Please direct any queries to the IAHAIO Director.

We are very grateful for the sponsorship support of CEVA and Nestle Purina. 

The theme for this year’s conference is Animals in AAI: The Best Fit

The aims of the conference are:

  1. To explain how good animal welfare and well-being in AAI can be achieved across different species and settings
  2. To highlight how the best fit between animals and humans, taking into account animal cognition, emotions, personality and breed type in AAI can lead to good quality outcomes
  3. To share opportunities for education and training for dog handlers and volunteers working in AAI
  4. To share current trends and good practice in AAI in Europe
  5. To highlight needs of developing AAI programmes in Europe
  6. To share a new personality assessment tool for dogs working in AAI: PADA – Personality Assessment for Dogs in AAI

The conference will feature two expert plenary speakers, as well as a choice of special workshop sessions and 5 minute rapid oral presentations. . In addition, several IAHAIO member organizations across Europe will give us insight into their work and latest developments.

Call for Abstracts

We welcome abstract submissions from researchers and practitioners in the field of AAI and related disciplines such as psychology, animal behaviour, health and social care, veterinary practice etc. on our conference topic: “Animals in AAI: The Best Fit”.

Examples of relevant subject area include: animal and human welfare in AAI, animal selection, animal behaviour in AAI, assessment and evaluation, different groups such as children, older people, children with special needs, and different species in AAI. These are examples – the list is not exhaustive.

Abstracts must be no more than 200 words and in English. Abstracts longer than this will not be considered.

Abstracts will be assessed according to the following criteria:

  • Title: Clear description of presentation and its contents
  • Conciseness, coherence and clarity, structure
  • Methodology: research design if an empirical study, including clearly stated questions, data sources, data collection procedures, analytic approach and results
  • Relevance, appropriateness and significance of the topic/issue/problem to the field
  • Originality

About the ‘flash’ oral presentations

Candidates whose abstract is accepted for presentation will be given a total of 10 minutes to present their work at the conference. It is recommended that no more than 5 powerpoint slides be used, with bullet points highlighting the main features of the presentation. Candidates should consider the key take-home messages they would like the conference delegates to have – links to contact details and further information can be given should the delegates wish to follow-up on the presentation.


We are very pleased to confirm the following speakers and workshop presenters:

Plenary speakers:

Prof. Şükrü Torun, Turkey, ‘Neurological foundations for animal-assisted interventions and equine-assisted therapy’ (provisional title)

Jodi Smith, USA ‘Dog welfare in AAI with children’ (provisional title)

Michal Pregowski, Poland, If you want to help others, take care of yourself first. Compassion fatigue as a human welfare risk in AAI

Workshop presenters:

  • Tynke de Winkel, The Netherlands, Animal emotions and the well-being of dogs in AAI
  • Michal Pregowski, Poland, Choosing the right dog for AAI
  • Christine Olsen and Line Sandstedt, Norway, The importance of a good relationship and best fit between between client – dog – handler/professional to achieve the excellent results in AAI
  • Liis Teesaar, Estonia, Possible underlying mechanisms in human-animal interactions, special focus in horse-human encounters

Examples: adolescents` social skills and self-esteem in equine assisted counselling

We are thrilled to include in the registration a third day, featuring Adam Miklosi and his team presenting a new personality assessment for dogs in AAI (PADA).

This conference will be of interest to practitioners delivering AAI; AAI animal trainers; Researchers in AAI; IAHAIO members; AAI practitioners and researchers in Poland and wider Europe; managers of institutions, hospital staff and volunteers.

The cost to attend is 140 euros for IAHAIO members and 170 euros for non-IAHAIO members.

Thank you to CEVA and Nestle Purina for their wonderful support.