Stress and chronically elevated glucocorticoid levels have been shown to disrupt parental behavior in mothers; however, almost no studies have investigated corresponding effects in fathers. The present experiment tested the hypothesis that chronic variable stress inhibits paternal behavior and consequently alters pup development in the monogamous, biparental California mouse (Peromyscus californicus). First-time fathers were assigned to one of three experimental groups: chronic variable stress (CVS, n = 8), separation control (SC, n = 7), or unmanipulated control (UC, n = 8). The CVS paradigm (3 stressors per day for 7 days) successfully stressed mice, as evidenced by increased baseline plasma corticosterone concentrations, increased adrenal mass, decreased thymus mass, and a decrease in body mass over time. CVS altered paternal and social behavior of fathers, butmajor differenceswere observed only on day 6 of the 7-day paradigm. At that time point, CVS fathers spent less time with th
|Journal||Hormones and Behavior|
|State||Published - 2013|
Harris, B., Jong, T. R. D., Yang, V., & Saltzman, W. (2013). Chronic variable stress in fathers alters paternal and social behavior but not pup development in the biparental California mouse (Peromyscus californicus). Hormones and Behavior, 799-811.