MSc Studentship Is Subsidised Feline Neutering Associated with a Change in the Number of Cats and/or the Age of Cats that are Neutered by Veterinary Practices?

Cats Protection

The project:

There is the potential for an MSc studentship to start on 31/3/14 for a period of 12 months. The project is described below and would be funded by Cats Protection (CP). The funding will not be confirmed until 05/02/14 but we are advertising now due to the restricted timescale.?Anyone wishing to apply for this studentship should apply online and will be contacted after 06/02/14 to be advised whether the funding has been granted or not. Interviews are expected to be held on 28/02/14. When applying, please choose ‘Veterinary Science (MSc by research)? and enter details of the studentship when prompted in the Funding and Research Details sections of the form.

Little evidence exists to quantify the effectiveness of feline neutering campaigns, despite substantial resources being invested in these schemes by animal welfare charities.?

CP will be running a neutering campaign in the East Midlands region, (scheduled to start July 2014).?Cat owners will be asked to pay ?10 towards the cost of neutering and additional costs will be subsidised by CP.?It is hypothesised that the campaign will increase the number of cats that are neutered by veterinary practices and potentially decrease the age of neutering, as awareness of pre-pubertal neutering is raised during campaign advertising.?The aim of this study is to compare the number (and age) of cats that are neutered by participating veterinary practices in the region, before and after the launch of the campaign.?The results of this study can be used to inform future policies made by animal welfare organisation decision-makers regarding the cost-effectiveness of running similar campaigns in different regions in the UK.?

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Data collection:?The student will be required to spend approximately eight weeks in the East Midlands region to recruit veterinary practices and liaise with them to collect data.?The student will also assist with the campaign (e.g. volunteer recruitment, community engagement).?Accommodation, subsistence and travel expenses (including car hire if necessary) will be covered by project running costs whilst the student is required to be in the East Midlands region.?

Data analysis:?The student will use quantitative data analysis techniques to produce study results.?Statistical training will be provided, as necessary.

Candidate requirements:? Candidates must have a good degree (at least 2:1) in a relevant discipline which can be from a broad range of science subjects.?Excellent interpersonal skills, written and oral communication skills are required.?An ability to be able to work well as part of a group and independently is very important. Candidates must hold a full UK driving licence.?

Funding: If funding is agreed by CP (to be decided 05/02/14), it will cover the university tuition fee for a UK/EU candidate plus an annual stipend of ?13,726. International students from outside of the EU would be considered but would be required to fund the difference between the Home and Overseas tuition fee.


Deadline for applications: 13th February 2014

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