Commentaries

A Noble Natural Experiment

Last month I began a noble experiment on the grounds surrounding the little house on the hill to test the findings of a study done by the USDA and partners funded by the National Science Foundation. Specifically, I wanted to know how mowing affected bee welfare in my yard.

Read more

Nature and the Human-Companion Animal Bond

Any change in nature can influence the quality of the human-companion animal bond. But at no time of year is this as obvious as it is in spring.

Read more

Animal Learning and Teaching Theory à la Frica Louise

For eleven weeks more than a decade ago one of my dogs, Frica, daily reminded me of the disconnect between animal learning and teaching theory vs. the way we teach animals and expect them to learn. She taught me a lot that I still use today.

Read more

Tool Use in Dogs and Cats

As often occurs in science, once scientists started looking for tool use in nonhuman animal species, they found members of multiple species throughout the animal kingdom exhibiting this behavior in nature. (See this Wikipedia article for a nice overview of this subject.) Historically, tool use was considered one of those skills that made humans superior. Then when evidence of it appeared in wild animals, some said those animals must have learned it from humans. But then evidence ruled that out too. Naturally, this got me thinking about tool use in dogs and cats and whether the lack of reports of this

Read more

Evolutionary Elegance and Anthropomorphism

I doubt that Bamboo the cat cared a bit about evolutionary elegance and anthropomorphism when he created his new cabin fever game. But that didn’t stop me from making the connection…

Read more

The Polarization of Human-Companion Animal Interactions

This month’s commentary explores the trend toward publicly proclaimed polarized thinking in our society and how this may influence our interactions with companion animals.

Read more

Put a Little Light Into Your New Year

When faced with a dark, frigid post-holiday season, an energy-efficient summary of key points to remember when facing animal behavior problems can help a lot.

Read more

A Fearless Gift

If someone asked you what the best gift would be for your pet, what would you answer?

Read more

A Must-Read for Those with an Interest in Behavior

Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst is a must-read for anyone who works with animals and people.

Read more

Chronic Stress and Its Effects on the Bond

Do you think or hear yourself saying, “I’m so stressed!” often? If so, this commentary is for you and your animals.

Read more
Page 1 of 2112345...1020...Last »