Michael Brunt



Michael is an animal welfare researcher that uses quantitative and qualitative methodologies to identify the human barriers to improving the lives of animals. He completed his BSc in Zoology and MSc in Applied Ethology from the University of Guelph. Michael earned his PhD in Applied Animal Biology from the Animal Welfare Program at the University of British Columbia. He is currently working as a SSHRC Postdoctoral Research Fellow and NSERC Postdoctoral Research Scholar in the labs of Drs Kelton, LeBlanc, and Renaud.

Research Interests

Michael’s principle research interests involve improving the lives of animals under human care, understanding public attitudes to animal uses, ethics of animal use, transparency of animal use practices, and the social licence to use animals. He uses his experience in epidemiological and ethological research to inform online mixed method surveys, semi-structured interviews, and focus groups with the stakeholders that work with animals and are the end users of the knowledge generated from these applied disciplines.


Michael’s current research focus is on analyzing how veterinarians and farmers view their role in promoting positive welfare states and if there are constraints to the implementation of positive experiences for animals within the practice of veterinary medicine and industrial agriculture. Additionally, analyze if an inability to influence positive welfare states in animals may be detrimental to the mental wellbeing of veterinarians, farmers, and other caregivers of animals, and vice-versa, if poor mental health for veterinarians and farmers may also interfere with their perceived capacity to intervene on behave of the animals.