Director of Anthrozoology. The Human-Animal Bond Program was conceived by Dr. Perkins, Ph. D., Professor of Psychology, in 2006. Dr. Perkins has been a professor at Carroll since 1990. Originally, the Human-Animal Bond Program was a minor in the Psychology Department. The program grew rapidly and is now an Anthrozoology major.
Dr. Perkins received her Ph.D. in animal behavior in 1992 from the University of California-Davis. Concurrent with her faculty career at Carroll, Dr. Perkins held an appointment as a cooperative research scientist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture for eight years (1992-1999). Her work resulted in several papers, a book chapter, and a patented drug protocol. Dr. Perkins' love of horses led to five years researching feral horses in the Pryor Mountains and drives her current passion for endurance riding. She is an active member of the International Society of Anthrozoology (ISAZ), the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association (NARHA), the Delta Society, the Equine Faciltiated Mental Health Association (EFMHA), the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA), and the Equine Guided Education Association (EGEA). Dr. Perkins spends her free time at home training her border collies and riding her Arabian horses.
Dr. Perkins is also the Margaret Perryman Endowed Professor for the Human Animal Bond Degree Program. Here's what she had to say about that:
I have been using the endowed professorship to augment half of my salary during my year- long sabbatical (2015-2016). Projects include: supporting the initiation of research by junior faculty members, helping the college acquire and develop an equine and canine facility, development of text book material for use in anthrozoology, and participating in research in equine assisted therapy.
I received my MS in Animal Science from Montana State University in Bozeman and my PhD in Animal Behavior from the University of California at Davis. I began teaching in the Psychology department at Carroll College in 1990 and became chair of that department in 1996. My main area of teaching was physiological psychology. In 2005 I took a sabbatical leave from my position to study the role that animals play in the lives of people. I was particularly interested in service dogs and equine assisted therapy. We created a minor within the psychology department that focused on the human-animal bond and included hands on classes with both dogs and horses. In 2011, the Board of Trustees at Carroll College approved the major in "Anthrozoology" and it became an independent department. This is the first academic major of its kind in the United States. It boasts 97 declared student majors.