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dog socialisation

All Our Dogs Are Socially Awkward Now

The pandemic has made dogs "out of practice" socially. In a recent essay in The New York Times called “We’re All Socially Awkward Now,” journalist Kate Murphy suggests that over the course of this pandemic human social skills have begun to get rusty because we are all out of practice. She notes the widespread concern that social distancing or virtual schooling will negatively impact...
emotional support dog

Are Emotional Support Dogs Always a Cure-All?

In one survey, 100% of people say yes. Are they right? I recently read an essay by Lily Velez called "Newly Released Study Reveals Health Benefits of Emotional Support Animals" in which we're told, "All participants reported that their quality of life had noticeably improved with an ESA dog" (my emphasis). In this piece the following data from a joint collaboration between The Assistance Dog...
dog cloning

Cloning Pets

Just one bad idea after another You love your dog or cat. Someday your dog or cat will die. (I’m sorry, but it’s inevitable.) What if you could put aside the genetic materials to make a perfect copy of your beloved animal, a clone of your pet? Would you do it?  This is something we need to think about, as individuals...
tips for new puppy owners

Craving a Pet

Scratching the itch isn’t always the right response. Rachael had just returned to school at the University of Colorado and was excited, as a sophomore, to be living off-campus in a shared house with five roommates. Amid the excitement of a new year, though, there was the underlying angst of COVID and an ounce of homesickness. The thought entered her...
kids and dogs

Kids and Dogs: Playing, Walking, and Emotional Development

Some pre-schoolers living with dogs display more prosociality than dogless kids. Twelve years ago, I published a kid's book called Animals at Play: Rules of the Game. I was thrilled that Jane Goodall supported this easy-to-read discussion of how nonhuman animals (animals) play by writing:  "Marc Bekoff’s ideas about fair play stress the significance of cooperation and justice, aspects of behavior desperately needed in the world today ......
how to cope with losing a dog

What To Do When A Friend Loses A Pet

Seven ways to support a grieving friend 1. Do not say “It was just a dog!” or “It was just a cat.” Not only is this disparaging to animals, but it will likely offend a pet owner. This is an underhanded way of telling someone they are silly for loving an animal—and there is nothing silly about love for an animal. If you’ve...
postpartum depression

Does the Presence of a Companion Animal Help Young Mothers?

I'm pleased to post the guest essay by renowned dog expert, Ádám Miklósi, founder the Family Dog Research Project, author of Dog Behaviour, Evolution, and Cognition, and head of the Ethology Department at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest. This piece focuses on a fascinating new research essay by Andrea Temesi, Nóra Buford, and Ádám Miklósi titled "Associations among attitudes towards motherhood, pet-keeping, and postpartum depression symptoms" that's available online for free.1 Today, companion...
do dogs manipulate humans

“Are Dogs Really Hard-Wired to Manipulate Us?”

There's no evidence that dogs routinely try to take advantage of people. A few months ago, Betsy emailed me to ask, "Are dogs really hard-wired to manipulate us?" And last week, Warren asked, "What do you think about claims that we're actually dogs' pawns?" My answer to both: "I'm tired of reading this sort of garbage, and while a few dogs may exist...
adopting a shelter dog

Is the Trend Toward Open Adoption Good for Animal Welfare?

Should we try to make people "more adaptable" or animals "more adoptable"? In this post, I talk to Rain Jordan about the use of “open adoption” policies in animal shelter and rescue organizations, and why she thinks these policies put animals at risk. We also explore how the language and goals of rescue could usefully shift, so that instead of talking about “making...
dog and human relationship facts

Why Dogs Matter

Dogs matter because they're alive, have intrinsic value, and are feeling beings. Why dogs matter, what's a dog worth .ugb-cc16bd5 .ugb-blockquote__quote{width:70px !important;height:70px !important}I love my dogs because she is One of my favorite books by the late British philosopher and animal advocate Dr. Mary Midgley is titled Animals and Why They Matter. It's worth quoting the book's brief description because the subjects with which Dr. Midgley...
cute boy dog names

Cute Boy Dog Names For Your New Forever Friend

Cute Boy Dog Names Before you get a dog, you can't quite imagine what living with one might be like; afterward, you can't imagine living any other way. Caroline Knapp Cute boy dog names are hard to find and the day has almost arrived for welcoming your new best friend to his forever home. You're busy going through a checklist making...
adopt a dog

Mutual Rescue: Adopting a Homeless Animal Can Save You Both

A new book explores the depth and complexity of pets in our lives. Who rescued whom? .ugb-c71d001 .ugb-blockquote__quote{width:70px !important;height:70px !important}"Giving a shelter animal a home confers a special kind of restorative grace.""Mutual Rescue was written for every human who has ever felt enriched, invigorated, soothed, or restored by an animal and wanted to know why." I just received a very important new...

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