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Clinical Assistant Professor - Anthropology

Shelly Volsche


Shelly Volsche is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Boise State University, studying our ever-changing relationships with nonhuman animals, particularly dogs. Her current projects investigate the increasing importance of pets as family members, as well as working to understand the impact of cross-species communication on the development of empathy. This work reconnects her prior experience as an animal behavior consultant with her research agenda. Shelly received her PhD in Anthropology from University of Nevada, Las Vegas and is active in human-animal interaction, applied behavior, and evolutionary cognition organizations.


Shelly seeks to work with local organizations to incorporate evidence-based solutions to interspecies issues. She is available to do welfare and enrichment assessments and to assist organizations and individuals in creating programs and strategies that consider multiple stakeholder needs. Shelly has partnered with the Idaho Humane Society to develop and deliver humane education content along with other services. Shelly encourages her students to take similar cross-disciplinary approaches, striving to conduct research and outreach that improves broader understanding of the impact and importance of a One Health perspective to solving real-world challenges.

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