NSERC Industrial Research Chair
Professor, Animal Welfare
phone: 6048224898
fax: 6048222184
MacMillan 181
2357 Main Mall
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4


University of British Columbia, 1995, PhD
University of Alberta, 1989, MSc
University of British Columbia, 1987, BSc (Hon)


Nina’s love of animals began at a very young age while growing up on a beef cattle ranch in British Columbia . After leaving the ranch, she went onto complete her undergraduate in agricultural sciences at UBC, and her M.Sc. in Animal Science at the University of Alberta. She returned to Vancouver to complete her Ph.D. in Animal Sciences at the University of British Columbia.

Nina joined the UBC Animal Welfare Program after obtaining several years of experience as a research scientist working for the animal feed industry and was appointed as a NSERC Industrial Research Chair in 2008, and is recognized internationally for her research on care and housing for dairy cows and calves.

Marina also recently co-authored the definitive scholarly text – The Welfare of Cattle – in her core area of research (Springer Verlag, 2008). Because of this work as an educator on farm animal care, the impact of her research can now be seen on farms around the world.

Dr. von Keyserlingk’s studies have focused on the under-researched areas including behavior, housing and management and how these contribute to animal health and welfare of dairy cattle. For more details, please visit the Animal Welfare Program web site .


Marina von Keyserlingk and David Fraser offer a second year undergraduate course Animals and Society during the fall semester. Senior undergraduates with a strong interest in Animal Welfare are also able to participate in hands-on research in Animal Welfare by enrolling in the undergraduate thesis course and can take the Graduate Seminar in Animal Welfare. She and her colleague Dan Weary also offer a third year undergraduate course Research Methods in Applied Animal Biology. This course introduces students to research methods including research design, scientific critique, writing proposals and reports, and oral presentation.

Current Courses:

Winter 2015

APBI314 Animals and Society Sections

Contemporary use of animals for food production, companionship, recreation and science; social and ethical issues concerning human impacts on animals; animals in human culture; protection of animals by society and the law.

Winter 2015

APBI398 Research Methods in Applied Animal Biology Sections

Research methods including research design, scientific critique, writing proposals and reports, and oral presentation.

Selected Publications

Sepúlveda, P., J.A., Huzzey, D. M. Weary, and M. A. G. von Keyserlingk. In press. INVITED REVIEW: Behavioural changes related to illness during the periparturient period in dairy cattle. Anim. Prod. Sci.

Huzzey, J.A., J.A. Fregonosi, M.A.G. von Keyserlingk and D.M. Weary. In press. Sampling behavior of dairy cattle: effects of variation in dietary energy density on behavior at the feed bunk. J. Dairy Sci.

Chapinal, N., A. K. Barrientos, M. A. G. von Keyserlingk, E. Galo, D. M. Weary. In press. Herd-level risk factors for lameness in freestall farms in North Eastern US and California. J. Dairy Sci.

von Keyserlingk, M.A.G., A. Barrientos, K. Ito, E. Galo and D.M. Weary. In press. Benchmarking North American Freestall Dairies: Effects of lameness, injuries, facility and management for high producing Holstein dairy cows. J. Dairy Sci. doi.org/10.3168/jds.2012-5807

Falk, A.C., D.M. Weary, C. Winckler and M.A.G. von Keyserlingk (in press) Preference for pasture versus freestall housing by dairy cattle when stall availability indoors is reduced. J. Dairy Sci. doi.org/10.3168/jds.2011-5208

DeVries, T.J., M. Aardoudse, H. W. Barkema, K. E. Leslie, M.A.G. von Keyserlingk. In press. Associations of dairy cow behavior, barn hygiene, cow hygiene, and risk of elevated somatic cell count. J. Dairy Sci.

Khan, M.A., D.M. Weary, D.M. Veira and M.A.G. von Keyserlingk. 2012. Postweaning performance of heifers fed starter with and without hay during the milk-feeding period. J. Dairy Sci. 95:3970–3976.

Schirmann, K., N. Chapinal, D.M. Weary, W. Heuwieser and M.A.G. von Keyserlingk. 2012. Rumination and its relationship to feeding and lying behavior in Holstein dairy cows prepartum. J. Dairy Sci. 95:3212-3217.

De Paula Vieira, A., M.A.G. von Keyserlingk and D.M. Weary. 2012. Presence of an older weaned companion influences feeding behavior and improves performance of dairy calves before and after weaning from milk. J. Dairy Sci. 95:3218-3224.

Proudfoot, K.L., D.M. Weary and M.A.G. von Keyserlingk. 2012. Linking the social environment to illness in farm animals. Appl. Anim. Behav. Sci. 138:203-215.

von Keyserlingk, M.A.G., J. Rushen, A.M.B. de Passillé and D.M. Weary. 2009. INVITED REVIEW: The Welfare of Dairy Cattle – Key Concepts and the Role of Science. J. Dairy Sci. 92: 4101-4111.

Awards & Honours

Elanco Award for Excellence in Dairy Science (2013)
Metacam Bovine Welfare Award (2013)
Canadian Animal Industries Award in Extension & Public Service (2012)
26th Annual World Buiatrics Congress Keynote Speakers (2010)