Department: Pathobiology and Population Sciences

Campus: Hawkshead

Research Centres: RVC Animal Welfare Science and Ethics

Natalie is the Assistant Animal Welfare Scientist within the department of Pathobiology & Population Sciences at the RVC, working primarily with the Animal Welfare Science and Ethics team (AWSE). Natalie has expertise in behavioural data collection, animal handling, laboratory techniques and teaching.

Natalie has a BSc degree from Cardiff university in Bioscience (Zoology) Hons, which she recieved in 2011. After various volunteer positions at her local wildlife park and boarding kennels Natalie started her role at the RVC in January 2012.

Johnson KF, Chancellor N, Burn CC, Wathes DC. (2017). Prospective cohort study to assess rates of contagious disease in pre-weaned UK dairy heifers: management practices, passive transfer of immunity and associated calf health. Veterinary Record Open 2017;4:e000226. doi:10.1136/ vetreco-2017-000226

Johnson KF, Chancellor N, Burn CC, Wathes DC. (2017). Analysis of pre-weaning feeding policies and other commercial rick factors influencing growth rates in calves on 11 commercial dairy farms. Animal. 2017 Nov 23:1-11. doi: 10.1017/S1751731117003160

Gibson TJ, Rebelo CB, Gowers TA, Chancellor NM. (2017) Electroencephalographic assessment of concussive non-penetrative captive bolt stunning of turkeys.

Gibson, T. J., Whitehead, C., Taylor, R., Sykes, O., Chancellor, N. M., & Limon, G. (2015). Pathophysiology of penetrating captive bolt stunning in Alpacas (Vicugna pacos). Meat science, 100, 227-231.

Gibson, T.J., Bedford, E.M., Chancellor, N., and Limon, G. (2015). Pathophysiology of free-bullet slaughter of horses and ponies.Meat Science. 108, 120-124. doi:10.1016/j.meatsci.2015.06.007



Natalie teaches in the annual animal handling classes for all the first year vets student, focusing mainly on the pig handling classes carried out at Boltons Park Farm. Natalie has also taught on the Animal Bevhaviour and Welfare 3rd year module on topics including Pig and Cattle Welfare.

  • Development of welfare assessment protocols and technology

    Assessment of animal welfare is continually being improved using new insights in animal behaviour, non-invasive physiological methods, animal-environment interactions, and novel monitoring systems for animal responses and behaviours. 

    Some of our work aims to develop a more fundamental understanding of which measures (e.g. behaviour, activity, posture etc) should most appropriately be targeted with sensor technology. However, technology is not always feasible (or even desirable) in some sectors, so we develop welfare assessments that are valid and practical in whatever context they are needed and tailored to the specific welfare aim.

  • Humane slaughter

    Livestock and other animals are stunned and dispatch for slaughter, disease control and population management.

    The RVC has a well-established Animal Welfare Science and Ethics research centre and members of the team study methods of stunning and dispatch of a variety of species in a variety of settings. The research is designed to help systems evolve and become more humane and less stressful for animals.

    The research is shared with stakeholders, which enables them to make scientifically informed changes that reduce animal distress.

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