Helping Traumatized Animals with "Hugs, Drugs and Choices"

Work at Australian sanctuaries offers valuable suggestions for helping traumatized animals overcome the conditions from which they suffer. They feel, they hurt, and they need help.

Zoo Ethics and the Challenges of Compassionate Conservation

Jenny Gray's new book called "Zoo Ethics: The Challenges of Compassionate Conservation" is an important contribution to wide-ranging debates about keeping animals in captivity.

Imprinting Kids for Violence Toward Animals

By calling on youngsters to kill animals, many New Zealanders, including educators, are using well-known psychological principles to advance their agenda. Violence begets violence.

Wild Lioness Nurses a Baby Leopard: An Intriguing Odd Couple

Unexpected friendly encounters among wild carnivores are rare and eye-catching. Called "odd couples," we don't know why they form and it's best to keep an open mind about them.

Scapegoating Possums: Science, Psychology, and Words of War

Killing possums by youngsters has generated local and global condemnation. The science, psychology, and hype behind New Zealand's war on wildlife are highly questionable.

Long-Term Effects of Violence Toward Animals by Youngsters

Encouraging youngsters to kill other animals can have devastating and enduring effects. A phenomenon called "the link" should concern New Zealanders as they wage war on wildlife.

Animal Heartbreak: Each Individual's Feelings Matter to Them

Two things people misunderstand about animals is that each individual’s feelings are important to them and "smarter" animals don't suffer more than "less intelligent" animals.

Seabird Parents Communicate How They're Feeling via Preening

Common Murres negotiate parental duties and coordinate efforts by preening. If one parent isn't feeling well they tell the other so they can switch duties to help their children.

Youngsters Encouraged to Kill Possum Joeys in New Zealand

New Zealand schools need formal courses in humane education rather encouraging killing animals for money. Some want to make possum hunts mandatory so kids learn to respect them.

How We Can Become Better People Through Teamwork with Dogs

A new book stresses the importance of humans and dogs growing together as a team and benefits for both.

Animals Need More Freedom and Clearly Let Us Know This is So

Animals have rich inner lives, but their treatment doesn't reflect this. In an interview about, and excerpt from, The Animals' Agenda, Jessica Pierce and I discuss why this is so.

The Grace of Dogs: A Boy, a Black Lab, and the Canine Soul

A new book by Andrew Root called The Grace of Dogs: A Boy, a Black Lab, and a Father's Search for the Canine Soul ponders the deep meaning and mystery of dog-human relationships.

Dogs: Do "Calming Signals" Always Work or Are They a Myth?

An essay by Dr. Karen London called "Should we call these canine behaviors calming signals?" about the effects of various actions cautions how much we still have to learn.

Trumping Animals and Their Homes: Seeing Light in Dark Times

It's a tough time for animals. We need to overcome negativity, resist compassion and empathy fatigue, maintain hope, and keep our dreams alive.

Two Captive Elephants Save a Youngster From Drowning

A 45-second video of a young elephant named Hope being saved by two adults could change people's views about the emotional lives of other animals. Watch them keep Hope alive.

Australia's War on Wildlife: Why Welfare Fails Individuals

A study of shooting feral horses from helicopters raises many ethical questions about "Killing For Conservation" (KFC).

Pope Francis, Conservation Psychology, Science, and Earth

The Pope's encyclical letter on care for our common home has many very important ideas that are closely related to conservation psychology, anthrozoology, and the role of science.

Switzerland: Fish Need Friends, Dogs Need Competent Humans

Swiss animal protection laws set an admirable standard. Guinea pigs and goldfish must have companions, dogs must be exercised, and clipping their ears and tails is forbidden.

Pet Loss and Youngsters: It's the "Worst Day of Their Lives"

An essay by Juli Fraga called "When a Pet Dies, Helping Children Through the ‘Worst Day of Their Lives’" is a must read for everyone who has kids and a companion animal.

A Hierarchy of Dog Needs: Abraham Maslow Meets the Mutts

Linda Michaels' force-free training, adapted from Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of human needs, stresses gentle care and treatment, rewards, and choice. Being nice to your dog is key.

Monkeys Who Rob and Barter, Steal, and Then Ransom the Goods

Some so-called "mafia monkeys" living near an Indonesian temple have learned to steal and then sell back stolen goods to their owners. Not all monkeys run this ransom racket.

A Grieving Gorilla: A Picture That's Worth Entire Courses

A photo of a sad orphaned gorilla and a comforting human raises numerous questions about what other animals think and feel and the emotions shared in human-animal relationships.

Goofing Off: Psychological & Physical Benefits of Having Fun

Playing for the hell of it, simply because it's fun, is very important to do. Nonhuman animals do it with great vigor and joy, and so too should human animals. It's good for all.

Dominance in Free-Ranging Dogs: Age and Social Tolerance

A detailed study of five packs of unowned free-ranging mixed-breed dogs in different areas of Italy shows they form age-graded linear dominance hierarchies with little fighting.

Dogs Growl Honestly and Women Understand Better Than Men

A new study shows humans can classify dog growls and women do it better than men. Dogs honestly communicate their size and emotions in serious contests but less so during play.

Even Vegans Die: Leaving a Legacy of Caring and Compassion

A new book called "Even Vegans Die" is a valuable guide for animal advocates. It empowers people to make the best decisions regarding their own health and advocacy for animals.

Grief in Prairie Dogs: Mourning a Death in the Family

I saw a unique interaction between an adult prairie dog and road-killed youngster. She pulled the corpse off the road, touched it lightly, and vocalized, perhaps saying good-bye.

If We Could Talk With the Prairie Dogs, Just Imagine it ...

Renowned Northern Arizona University researcher Dr. Con Slobodchikoff argues we can talk with these linguistic rodents and learn a lot about the evolution of language from them.

Veterinary Ethics: Life & Death Decisions in the Real World

Making decisions about animal suffering in a wide variety of venues isn't easy, and doing the "right" thing can be extremely trying. Veterinarians need to be trained in ethics.

It's Still Not Happening at the Zoo: Sharp Divisions Remain

An international meeting about zoo reform brought together an eclectic group of people. Yet, the question if animals should be held captive was dismissed by some as irrelevant.