Essential Reads

Skill May Be More Important Than Size and Strength in Fights

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on October 20, 2017 in Animal Emotions
New research suggests an individual's talent is critical to consider when they brawl. It might actually be that size and raw strength don't matter as much as an animal's skill.

Dogs Are More Expressive When We're Looking at Them

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on October 20, 2017 in Animal Emotions
A new study shows dogs display more, but not different, facial expressions when we pay attention to them. The presence of food didn't have any effect, so they're not just using us.

Why Do People Think Animals Make Good Therapists?

By Hal Herzog Ph.D. on October 16, 2017 in Animals and Us
Public interest in animal assisted therapy has grown by leaps and bounds. Yale University researchers examine the reason for its appeal.

Can Vaccinations Cause Autism in Dogs?

By Stanley Coren PhD., DSc, FRSC on September 26, 2017 in Canine Corner
People who choose not to vaccinate their dogs for rabies don't recognize the risk that they are exposing their pets to.

More Posts on Animal Behavior

Minding Animals: Expanding Views of Human-Animal Studies

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 13, 2017 in Animal Emotions
Minding Animals International offers cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary perspectives on human-animal studies and the nature of human-animal bonds in many different venues.

Murder, She Didn't Write: Why Can Only Humans be Murdered?

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 12, 2017 in Animal Emotions
It's time to change the language we use when writing about killing other animals. Killing animals to manage or to collect them as trophies should rightly be called murder.

"Gosh, My Dog is Just Like Me": Shared Neuroticism

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 11, 2017 in Animal Emotions
A new study shows that dogs mirror human personalities more than humans mirror dog personalities and that pessimism and anxiety are shared traits.

Living With/out Fear: The Power of Being a Rational Optimist

By Jason Powers M.D. on February 10, 2017 in Beyond Abstinence
Living a passionate life, devoid of fear.

“Is Your Pet a Psychopath?”

How did deception evolve, and how do you know it's there? Learn these 4 simple, but overlooked signs.

Solving the Problem for Elephants

By G.A. Bradshaw PhD, PhD on February 08, 2017 in Bear in Mind
Captive-held male elephants are underserved by sanctuaries. Here's how the problem is being fixed.

How Dogs Respond to an Angry Expression on a Human Face

By Stanley Coren PhD., DSc, FRSC on February 08, 2017 in Canine Corner
Whether your dog looks at your face may depend upon your emotional expression

Humans and Animals: Global Problems and Humane Solutions

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 07, 2017 in Animal Emotions
A new book called "Humans and Animals" stresses that animals are not just beings "out there." Rather, they are embedded in our existence at every scale and in every environment.

Censored: Animal Welfare and Animal Abuse Data Taken Offline

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 06, 2017 in Animal Emotions
In an unprecedented and reprehensible move toward censorship, animal welfare reports and animal abuse data have been wiped from the USDA website.

What Happens When a Therapist Goes Away

By Susan Scheftel Ph.D. on February 06, 2017 in Evolving Minds
Patients often wonder if therapists think about them when they are away: some insights from a therapist's thoughts while on vacation.

Sex, Beauty, and Climate Change: Flycatchers are Less Flashy

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 06, 2017 in Animal Emotions
Climate change is reeking havoc on the behavior and reproduction of numerous animals. A long-term study of male flycatchers shows warmer temperatures make them less attractive.

Research on Captive Animals Produces Misleading Results

By Jessica Pierce Ph.D. on February 05, 2017 in All Dogs Go to Heaven
A new analysis of data on captive zebra finches shows clearly how stress can give a biased and limited view of how these and other birds actually live in the wild.

Research on Captive Animals Produces Misleading Results

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 05, 2017 in Animal Emotions
A new analysis of data on captive zebra finches shows clearly how stress can give a biased and limited view of how these and other birds actually live in the wild.

Who Needs Males? Female Shark Leonie Makes Babies On Her Own

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on February 02, 2017 in Animal Emotions
A recent study reported a female shark switching from sexual to asexual reproduction and making babies on her own. This is rarer than going from asexual to sexual reproduction.

“Study Finds Dog-Walkers Have More Bad Mental Health Days!"

By Hal Herzog Ph.D. on February 01, 2017 in Animals and Us
The media abounds with articles on research on the health benefits of pets and the effectiveness of therapy animals. But these nine recent studies found this was not the case.

Dogs Like Variety in Music Including Reggae and Soft Rock

Although most genres of music seem to relax dogs, research shows that soft rock and reggae have the most positive effects

Domestic Dogs: A New Book Beautifully Covers All Things Dog

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on January 30, 2017 in Animal Emotions
James Serpell's edited book called "The Domestic Dog: Its Evolution, Behavior and Interactions with People" is an up-to-date and comprehensive summary of all matters of dogs.

Treating Lyme Disease: Mouse as Weapon of Mass Destruction?

By Mark Borigini M.D. on January 29, 2017 in Overcoming Pain
Many readers have expressed their concerns regarding the negative impact that infection with Lyme disease has had on their lives.

Peace of Mind for the Active Thinker

By Seth Slater M.F.A. on January 26, 2017 in The Dolphin Divide
How to prepare and calm the brain for new tasks. Turning down the volume on cares and worries can reduce mental burn-out.

Do Dogs or Cats Make You Look More Attractive?

New data looks at how having a dog or a cat in a photo affects how appealing and attractive the person in the photo appears.

Empathy Burnout and Compassion Fatigue Among Animal Rescuers

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on January 23, 2017 in Animal Emotions
A very valuable essay by Kasia Galazka called "How Animal Rescuers Are Burning Out Their Empathy" is a must read for people working with animals in need and those who don't.

Should Animals Sue Scientists for Libel?

By G.A. Bradshaw PhD, PhD on January 22, 2017 in Bear in Mind
Despite a vast amount of data showing otherwise, scientists persist in attributing demonic deeds to non-human animals.

Dog Training's Dirty Little Secret: Anyone Can Legally Do It

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on January 19, 2017 in Animal Emotions
"In the United States anyone can work as a dog trainer, regardless of the person’s qualifications." The Academy of Dog Trainers has called for transparency and regulation.

Killing Healthy Animals in Zoos: "Zoothanasia" is a Reality

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on January 18, 2017 in Animal Emotions
The poster corpse for killing healthy zoo animals is Marius, a young giraffe slaughtered at the Copenhagen Zoo. A recent essay on this topic in The New Yorker is an excellent read.

Dogs, Mirrors, and Purple Fuzz: Did Honey Know That's Honey?

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on January 16, 2017 in Animal Emotions
We must be very careful when claiming some animals don't have a sense of self. The standard way to study self-recognition in animals, the mirror test, is too narrow an approach.

Dining on Leftovers: Do Women Lose by Not Eating Afterbirth?

By Robert D. Martin Ph.D. on January 16, 2017 in How We Do It
Unlike all other primates and most other mammals, human mothers do not usually devour the placenta after birth. Are they missing out on important benefits because of this?

Learning From Orca Menopause

By G.A. Bradshaw PhD, PhD on January 15, 2017 in Bear in Mind
How neuropsychology provides insights into the true nature of Killer Whale morals and culture.

Anthrozoology: Embracing Co-existence in the Anthropocene

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on January 13, 2017 in Animal Emotions
A book by Michael Tobias and Jane Morrison stresses the need for universal coherence. While it may make readers uneasy, we must face what we're doing in the rage of inhumanity.

A Dog That Is Afraid of Loud Noises Is Afraid of Everything

Research indicates that dogs that are easily frightened by loud noises are much more apt to be fearful in many situations, show separation anxiety, and even aggressive behaviors.

Rituals and Practices Surrounding Animal Death

By Marc Bekoff Ph.D. on January 12, 2017 in Animal Emotions
An interview with Margo DeMello, editor of the recent book Mourning Animals, highlights various rituals that occur when an animal dies and notes that very few animals are grieved.