Companion Animals

Approximately one-half of all Canadian families include a companion animal, so many of us care passionately about these animals and how to improve their care.

Who We Are

Lead Faculty

Alexandra (Sasha) Protopopova

Assistant Professor; NSERC/BC SPCA Industrial Research Chair in Animal Welfare

David with dog (upscaled)

David Fraser

Professor Emeritus

Graduate Students

Amin Azadian

PhD Student

Bailey Eagan

PhD Student

Antonio Hou

MSc Student

Lexis Ly

PhD Student

Georgia Ruyter

MSc Student

List of Alumni

Learn about our alumni and explore their theses.


What We Do

BC SPCA publications

Sasha Protopopova and her students contribute articles in each bi-annual issue of the BC SPCA’s Science & Policy Newsletter and AnimalSense magazine. Take a look at the most recent issues on BC SPCA’s website.

AnimalSense Science & Policy

CVMA’s West Coast Veterinarian

Members of the program often write articles in CMVA’s West Coast Veterinarian magazine. View past issues on CMVA’s website.



We have videos featuring conference presentations, student work, and more for each of our research areas on our YouTube channel.


Where We Work

Human-Animal Interaction Lab

This space opened in September 2022 thanks to federal and provincial funding via the Canada Foundation for Innovation and the BC Knowledge Development Fund. Led by Dr. Protopopova, this space invites pet dogs and their owners to engage in canine cognition research. It is has been approved by UBC veterinarians to ensure it is safe for pups and their humans.

Learn More

Latest News

Search Within Companion Animal News

Thanks to our supporters! Companion animal welfare is an important area of concern of key donors including the BC SPCA and the BCVMA.