Essential Reads

Why You're Going to Watch The Walking Dead on Sunday

By Steven Schlozman M.D. on October 22, 2016 in Grand Rounds
What to Think About As You Turn On The Walking Dead Tomorrow

Voracious Science: A Journey from Animal User to Advocate

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on October 21, 2016 in Animal Emotions
Dr. John Gluck's new book called "Voracious Science" details his courageous and deeply personal ethical transformation from animal researcher to animal protector.

Animal Altruism?

Why do humpback whales go out of their way to save the lives of seals? In this post, we discuss what could motivate such incredible behavior.

Please Keep Your Emotional Support Iguana Off My Couch

By David J Ley Ph.D. on October 15, 2016 in Women Who Stray
Emotional support animals offer valuable assistance. But sometimes, therapists need to focus on helping people develop alternative strategies of soothing and anxiety-reduction.

More Posts on Animal Behavior

The Psychology of Killing Wolves, Cats, and other Animals

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on September 16, 2016 in Animal Emotions
There are many unrelenting wars on a wide variety of animals. Often people who go out and kill animals say they actually love them. We need more psychological studies in this area.

Can Confiding in Your Dog Improve Your Mental Health?

By Stanley Coren Ph.D., F.R.S.C. on September 14, 2016 in Canine Corner
New data shows that people confide in their dog during times of adversity, but only about certain specific emotions

Bonobo Females Form Tight Alliances and Use French Ticklers

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on September 12, 2016 in Animal Emotions
A new study shows bonobo females form tight cross-generational groups. In addition to practicing all forms of sex and dominating males, bonobo sisterhood is a hot research topic.
The Kong Company

Food Toys and Dispensers for Dogs and Cats

Do your dogs and cats eat out of bowls? Let's change that! Meal time, play time, and training can be much more rewarding with the right food toys and dispensers.

Cats and Humans: There's No Need For War

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on September 07, 2016 in Animal Emotions
Alley Cat Allies president Becky Robinson discusses why removing all free-ranging cats "by any means necessary," as suggested in "Cat Wars," is neither necessary nor humane.

Just Looking at a Dog Can Make You Smile

By Stanley Coren Ph.D., F.R.S.C. on September 07, 2016 in Canine Corner
A simple set of data demonstrates that merely seeing a dog can make people feel good.

“Lexical Processing” – by Dogs?

By John Bradshaw Ph.D. on September 05, 2016 in Pets and Their People
Do dogs understand human language, or do they simply react to familiar sounds?

Skinner's Fundamental Insight and Fundamental Error

By Gregg Henriques Ph.D. on September 02, 2016 in Theory of Knowledge
Skinner's fundamental insight is the idea that animal behavior evolves via behavioral selection. His fundamental error was his radical behavioral philosophy.

"Cat Wars" Calls For Killing Free-Ranging Cats

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 31, 2016 in Animal Emotions
In a new book called "Cat Wars" the authors conclude, "the most desirable solution seems clear -- remove all free-ranging cats from the landscape by any means necessary."

Conflict Resolution: Dancing Your Way to Cooperation?

By Seth Slater M.F.A. on August 30, 2016 in The Dolphin Divide
How to avoid a clash of wills in the face of stubbornness. Making the right moves when it counts can head off flared tempers and open conflict.

Dogs and Humans Process Sounds Similarly

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 30, 2016 in Animal Emotions
A new study using fMRI shows dogs and humans process sounds similarly. However, it's still not clear why dogs have evolved the ability to differentiate praise and neutral words.

Commandeering Cuteness for Commercialism

By Douglas Van Praet on August 27, 2016 in Unconscious Branding
There is a good reason why cute and cuddly baby animals are tugging at your heart and pulling on your purse strings.

Road Rage: A Second "Free-Range" Intervention

What is real power? It is acting like the biggest dog on the road.

Survival, Aggression—and Compassion

What do you expect from those around you—competition or compassion? Here's a surprising example.

Defenders of Wildlife Supports Killing Wolves: Livestock Win

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 24, 2016 in Animal Emotions
This shocking decision presents many challenges to conservation psychologists, anthrozoologists, and those interested in compassionate conservation.

Farm Animal Suffering Leaves a Bad Taste In Your Mouth

By Hal Herzog Ph.D. on August 24, 2016 in Animals and Us
In a series of recent experiments, researchers found that whether we think animals were raised humanely or on a factory farm affects the way their meat tastes.

Frigatebirds Sleep While Flying: Somnambulism Gone Wild

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 24, 2016 in Animal Emotions
No friggin' kidding, frigatebirds can fly for weeks on end by power napping in ten-second bursts with only one side of their brain.

Do Dogs Prefer Food or Praise?

A new study looks at whether dogs prefer food rewards more than social interaction with their owners by monitoring what goes on inside the dogs brain.

Chimpanzees Choose to Cooperate Rather Than to Compete

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 23, 2016 in Animal Emotions
Comparative research continues to show humans aren't unique in displaying cooperative behavior. Nonhuman primates, other mammals, along with birds and fishes, show cooperation.

Valuing Dogs More Than War Victims: Bridging the Empathy Gap

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 21, 2016 in Animal Emotions
In a recent essay Nicholas Kristof writes, "If only, I thought, we valued kids in Aleppo as much as we did our terriers." Why do we offer more empathy to dogs than to some humans?

Sea of Sadness

By G.A. Bradshaw PhD, PhD on August 20, 2016 in Bear in Mind
For elephants in India, epic social changes are bringing hardships and hope.

Chickens Can Be Therapy Animals

By Temma Ehrenfeld on August 19, 2016 in Open Gently
The chicken as pet.

The New Science of Animal Psychiatry

Nicolas Dodman takes us into a world of dogs with autism and Tourette’s syndrome, horses with OCD, and cats who attack their owners for no apparent reason.

Killer Whales Trained as Performers Suffer Psychologically

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 18, 2016 in Animal Emotions
A new essay called "Orca Behavior and Subsequent Aggression Associated with Oceanarium Confinement" shows how being trained to perform results in heightened aggression.

Is Donald Trump an Alpha Male?

Do we need to be more precise in applying terms such as “personality disorder” and “alpha male” to political candidates?

Doomsday for Dogs? Are Declines in Fertility Due to Food?

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 12, 2016 in Animal Emotions
Males of five purebred dogs are showing declines in sperm motility. Are dogs "canaries in the coal mine" indicating serious environmental effects on food and reproduction?

The 100 Most Pet-Friendly Cities in the United States

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 09, 2016 in Animal Emotions
A recent comprehensive study is a must read for all who choose to share their home with another animal. I'm sure you'll be as surprised as I was about some of the results.

Canine Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

By Nicholas Dodman on August 07, 2016 in Dog Days
Have you ever wondered why some dogs exhibit pointless repetitive behaviors? I'm talking wrist licking, tail chasing, flank sucking, shadow chasing, and so on. If so, read on.

Maintaining Self-Control and Sexual Integrity

You can set the tone for most of your relationships. Conducting yourself in an aboveboard manner shows that you respect yourself and others.

The Neurobiology of Musicality in Animals: We're Not Unique

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on August 04, 2016 in Animal Emotions
Ronan the sea lion can keep the beat better than any other animal, a study published in Frontiers in Neuroscience found. Humans are not the only beat-keepers.