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  #11  
Old 05-19-2005, 06:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Renee750il
I think it takes and incredible amount of hubris to think that we have the sole rights to intelligence, rational thought, emotion, language.
I couldn't say it better....It is so funny (or sad) watching my fellow humans try to think of reasons why humans are sooooo superior to animals.
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  #12  
Old 05-19-2005, 07:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustav
I think that domestic dogs learn to an extent, their emotional behaviour from us! As we become the pack leader they pick up on our behaviour as to what is acceptable and what is definatley not accepable! I mean Gus has learnt behaviour that has no equal in wild dogs! He actually lifts up his top lip and smiles at me!! This is a sign of anger / agression in wild or domestic dogs and when my mums dog Barley is visiting he actually sees this as agression, but Gus has learnt this from me because I smile at him and now he sees it as a positive thing (and wonders what Barley's problem is!!)!
I know for a fact that he laughs too! And I have the pictures in my gallery to prove it!!
See, they're quicker to learn our language than we are to learn theirs! NOW which is the more intelligent animal, lol!
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  #13  
Old 05-19-2005, 08:25 AM
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Did you know that dogs can't learn the submissive grin from other dogs? They only learn it from humans smiling at them. I LOVE the doggy grin, but it tends to get them in trouble with folks who don't know what they're looking at!
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  #14  
Old 05-19-2005, 08:26 AM
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Max has really begun to show how he feels now that Kona is around. If Max feels you have played with Kona (even training) too much, he sits at the end of the hallway with his head between his legs and his eyes give you this sad look. I go over to him and tell him how much I love him, and he puts his head on me. Oh it's so pitiful. I take Max into the backyard and play soccer with him. Kona is learning to play soccer now too after watching Max do it. CJ likes to watch from the sidelines. Max will always be so special to me because he has so many emotions and they really show though.
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  #15  
Old 05-19-2005, 08:30 AM
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Doberluv, you've GOT to read this book: Minding Animals by Marc Bekoff.

Dr. Bekoff is a scientist-turned-activist. I had the pleasure of meeting him and his dogs when he was teaching at CU. Brilliant guy. His conclusion is that yes, he believes animals experience emotions. They may not experience them in the same way we do, but that doesn't make their feelings any less valid. You may or may not know that the scientific community tends to frown on anthropomorphizing animals, but Dr. Bekoff's point is that if this is what we have to do to put them into a "frame" so we can understand them, then there's nothing at all wrong with it. A wonderful book.
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Yes, I know about Bekoff. His most recent book is The Smile Of The Dolphin. I haven't read either, but would like to. This stuff is fascinating! Thank you for the recommendation. That must have been quite cool to meet him! Wow! I have read about him though and this is some of what I read...somewhat paraphrased:

Attributing human qualitites to animals has long been viewed skeptically by the scientific community. Behaviorists such as John B. Watson and B.F. Skinner looked at a 400 year old philosophy of Rene Descartes and re-examined this all these years later. They say that they know that a dog looks happy but can't know whether the dog feels happy. Recently a neurobehaviorist reinforced the classic distinction between emotional behavior and emotional feelings by focusing his investigations on the neurochemical substrates and brain regions that correlate with emotional behavior.

Charles Darwin characterized emotions as adaptive responses that aid animals in relaying important survival related messages to one another. Fear, for example, motivates us to fight, flee, or freeze, as well as to avoid known threats. Darwin spent considerable time studying the facial expressions of domestic dogs. Darwin noticed that facial muscles in mammals, including humans are universally raised or lifted in states of apparent joy, and lowered in response to sadness or grief. Darwin described several distinct emotional expressions in dogs, including attention, anger, fear, dejection, affection, joy, and excitement. He showed detailed descriptions of the facial expressions, ear position, tail carriage, vocalizations and posture that distinguish each feeling and make each recognizable to other dogs and mammals, including humans. Since all these expressions are shown in all mammals, they are innate and indicate considerable emotional continuity among mammals. Another scientist notes that evolutionary theory can't account for a spontaneous appearance of emotion in humans; there must have been nonhuman precursors. Mounting evidence of genetic and brain similarities between humans and animals suggest he is right. (so we "learned" from the animals, not the other way around)

There are two categories of emotions: primary and secondary. Primary are considered to be innate and reflexive. Fear, fight and flight, freeze responses to danger do not have to be learned. Secondary or complex emotions are derived from higher order thought processes and include the social emotions that arise within relationships; love, guilt, shame, embarrassment... There is convincing evidence that babies begin to exhibit evidence of complex emotions at about 18 months of age. These scinentists think that since these social emotions maintain and derive from the social bonds necessary for mammalian survival, they are therefore shared by other mammals.

Darwin observed that canine displays of affection almost always involve licking the hands or faces of their masters, seeking physical contact like apping and often a submissive gesture like exposing their bellies. Darwin speculated that physical contact and licking are innate components of the expression of love, as they are universal maternal gestures in canines and other mammals.

Scientists who study animal behavior have also observed cases of empathic behavior in animals. Empathy is regarded as a good fit with evolutionary theory: Empathic behavior benefits the group and promotes its survival as a whole. In Bekoff's recent book, The Smile of a Dolphin, he reported scientific accounts of dogs acting compassionately toward ill or injured animals. We have all heard stories of dogs risking their lives to help others, and those familiar with therapy work know how gentle and responsive dogs can be toward the infirm.

Bekoff notes that it is hard to know how emotional experiences differ even from one human to another. He says that animals emotions may be even more intense than humans because they are pure and unedited, like those of young children who have not yet been socialized to refrain from displaying their anger in public, for example. He says that we should be careful about projecting our own feelings onto an animal but we should instead try to understand the dog's unique experience and perspective. A dog may act destructively out of anxiety, boredom or anger. The challenge is to differentiate the dog's experince from our own. He says too that while dogs are loyal with their love and tend not to betray affectional relationships, he says that a dogs love is not unconditional. Just as it's behavior is not robotic, neither is it's affection. Unconditional love is wishful thinking on our part, he suggests.

Science has long been reluctant to attribute too much to cognitive sophisitication to animals; nowadays science is increasingly reluctant to attribute too little.

Dogs enrich our lives specifically because of their emotional nature.
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  #16  
Old 05-19-2005, 11:12 AM
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I can hardly wait for our Zoo's new Dolphin pool to open !!! They've added a Lab and a Golden to interact .
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  #17  
Old 05-19-2005, 12:36 PM
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I have spent my hole life beliving dogs and other animals do have emotions. I remember when I was a kid in school there was a teenager who had a dog, he loved his dog so much and the two went everywhere together that they could. The kid was killed in a car accident and within a month the dog died, it had grieved itself to death.
They can get depressed, they get sad over things, they get jealous, they get mad and may even throw a fit because of something, they get excited over things and of people, they show love and they show fear. Years ago before the laws said a dog couldnt run free I had my Bojangos. He was my pride and joy. I had to leave for a few months to help my grandfather care for my dying grandmother. My parents took care of Bojangos for me. He had a dog friend that would come play with him everyday. Bojangos got hit by a car. Mom said he just laid on the padio, wouldnt even try to move but this dog would come over and spent hours trying to get Bojangos to get up. I could go on and on with examples to show that a dog truely does show emotions and I cant for the life of me understand how a person can say they dont.
Most people know monkies can show emotions, the babies can grief themself to death with the lose of a parent, the elders will paddle the young for bad behaviour (I watched this at a zoo once), they are considered closest thing to a human. So why is it so hard to belive a dog or any other animal cant and doesnt show any emotions. It's more like people dont want to see it. If they were able to see an animal have emotions they wouldnt be able to hunt, eat meat, ect. So it's easier to allow themselves to think it's just an animal.
I guess I'm kind of the same because I dont allow myself to think of a chicken, turkey, cow or pig as having anykind of feelings or emotions. If I did I wouldnt be able to the meat.
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  #18  
Old 05-19-2005, 02:53 PM
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Becca, that is such a good post. I agree. What stories you had about the dogs.

When I was a kid we had two dogs, the mom and son. The son repeatedly got hepatitis....no vaccines then and he finally had to pts at age 15. The Mom lasted about a month and then she just died. Of course, she was old and not well...18 years old, so one can't say that she died of a broken heart or just died from old age, but it makes me wonder if she would have lasted a little longer if Bruno would have still been around. But yes....I know they grieve. My Doberman Lyric really showed his emotions when I had to put Bonnie, my Lab down, just a few months ago. He cried and cried and searched and searched for her. The two little dogs weren't as noticable, but were quite subdued. After a week or two, they were all seemingly OK again.

It's interesting....all these scientists have to show studies and data to support their opinions. We already knew all that a long time ago, didn't we. LOL!
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  #19  
Old 05-19-2005, 03:02 PM
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Bimmer grieved and grieved over Buffy. He moped. If we said her name he would jump up to go look for her, and he wouldn't even go out in the pasture with the Jeep until shortly after we brought Shiva home. He began to perk up and show some interest in Shiva, and she pretty much just wore him down until he gave in to her and started to play games with her and teach her things.

But even now, if we talk about Buffy, he will whine.
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In a controversy the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves. ~Buddha

Stupid is the most notoriously incurable and contagious disease known to mankind. If you find yourself in close proximity to someone infected with stupid, walk away as soon as said infection is noted.


There are few things more nauseating than pure obedience. ~ Kvothe

***8206;"silence is the language of god, all else is poor translation."
Rumi
Be a god. Know when to shut up.


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  #20  
Old 05-19-2005, 03:09 PM
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My auntie had a Sheltie who grieved to death after she died of Ovarian Cancer! He was inconsoleable (sp?) there was nothing anyone could do to persuade him to eat or go outside!!
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