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Keynote Speakers

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Dr. Kathy Murphy

Opening Keynote

Dr. Kathy Murphy (BVetMed, DPhil, CVA, CLAS, MRCVS) is a veterinary surgeon and neuroscientist. She graduated from the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons UK in 1999, initially working in mixed clinical practice before studying for two post graduate clinical qualifications with the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, in Veterinary Anaesthesia and Analgesia, and Laboratory Animal Science.

In 2009 she was awarded a highly prestigious Wellcome Trust Research Training Fellowship to study for her PhD, in Behavioral Neuroscience, at The Queens College, University of Oxford, UK. She subsequently worked in the USA as Assistant Professor of Neuroscience and Anesthesiology at the Icahn School of Medicine NYC, where her research into the long term effects of anaesthesia on learning and memory contributed to a change to the safety advice for the use of general anaesthesia in children.

Dr. Murphy founded, and is now Director of, Barking Brains Ltd (a neuroscience outreach platform for the animal behavior and training community), which focuses on translating neuroscientific information into practical and useful information for people interested in animal behavior. In order to maximize the impact of her diverse interests and skill set, Dr. Murphy teamed up with Behavior Vets in 2022 when she took up the position of Chief Scientific Officer.

She is now able to focus on her new found passion for science communication and providing evidence based, up to date, accessible, scientific information to clinicians, animal professionals and their clients, about subjects related to pain, behavior, neurobiology and the many interrelated factors.

In addition to Dr. Murphy’s primary career roles, she was Trustee and Veterinary Advisor to the Rottweiler Welfare Association for 14 years; is co-founder of Ethics First (a collective which lobbies for ethical decision making in clinical practice); is an Oversight Committee Member for the UK Dog Behaviour and Training Charter; a guest lecturer in Clinical Animal Behaviour at the University of Edinburgh, UK; lectures internationally; sits on numerous National and International boards, working groups and ethical review panels; is an ad-hoc reviewer for neuroscience, veterinary medicine and anaesthesia and pain journals; and continues to collaborate on research projects.

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Ken Ramirez

Closing Keynote

A 40+ year veteran of animal care and training, Ramirez is a biologist and animal behaviorist who served nine years at Marineworld of Texas.  He also was a trainer and coordinator at Ocean Safari in South Padre Island, Texas, as well as acting as a consultant to many zoo and aquarium programs throughout the world.  He began his training career working with guide dogs for the visually impaired and has maintained a close affiliation to pet training throughout his career.  He hosted two successful seasons of the pet training television series Talk to the Animals that compared pet training to the important work done with training and caring for animals in zoological facilities.  He has also recently worked closely with several search and rescue dog organizations, service dog groups, as well as with bomb and narcotic dogs. 

 

Since 2005, Ken has brought his experience as a trainer of many cognitive projects with marine mammals and primates to the dog arena.  Most notable has been his work with modifier cues, adduction, matching to sample, mimicry, and counting. The latter two projects: teaching dogs to mimic or imitate other dogs; and to learn the concept of counting are in the process of being prepared for scientific publication.  Both of these projects have documented cognitive abilities in dogs that have not been previously well documented or understood.   

Ken is the Executive Vice President and Chief Training Officer of Karen Pryor Clicker Training (KPCT).

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