The Emotional Lives of Animals

What a great book to start out the new year! I’m ordering mine right away. Of course, finding the time to read it with everything else going on will be a challenge.

Based on Marc Bekoff’s years of experience studying the social communication patterns of a wide range of animals, this important book shows that animals have rich emotional lives. Not only can animal emotions teach us about love, empathy, and compassion, argues Bekoff — they require us to radically rethink our current relationship of domination and abuse of animals. Award-winning scientist Bekoff skillfully blends extraordinary stories and anecdotes of animal grief, joy, embarrassment, anger, and love with the latest scientific research confirming the existence of emotions that commonsense experience has long implied. The author also explores the evolutionary purposes of emotions in a wide range of different species, showing how science is discovering brain structures that produce emotions, how we can track an evolutionary continuum based on shared brain structures among species, and how new information is being revealed by noninvasive neurological research techniques. Filled with Bekoff’s light humor and touching stories, The Emotional Lives of Animals is a clarion call for reassessing both how we view animals and how we treat them.


Smarts are going to the dogs – Study shows pooches can put names to faces
By Amy Sacks, Daily News Writer

Calling your dog’s name may do more than get Rover’s tail wagging. Scientists are now suggesting a dog can create a mental image of their owner upon hearing his voice.

“This is a very interesting and important study because it shows us that we really are connected to dogs and they to us,” said Marc Bekoff, an ethologist and biology professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Animal lovers have long felt that their beloved canines are able to recognize them. It’s not rocket science, Bekoff said, but scientifically proving a dog can distinguish its owner’s face illustrates that canines are extremely intelligent and emotional beings.

“Taken together with a lot of other data, we see that dogs have very rich mental lives and are not robots – they are thinking and feeling beings – sentient animals who are able to vary their responses to varying stimuli,” said Bekoff, author of “The Emotional Lives of Animals

There’s more……

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