Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Not a wolf after all ....

Has it ever occurred to you that the human species is not quite as bright as it's cracked up to be?

Well I could think of a multitude of examples to make my point (and no doubt you can too) but I'm just going to tell you about this new book that Gail's been reading this week.
'In Defence of Dogs". I think you'll agree that the title looks promising.

And as you know, this is a scientific household, so the fact that the book is by John Bradshaw, an anthrozoologist* at Bristol University, and is claimed to "use science to advocate for a better life for companion dogs" is also in its favour.

But hang on a minute.

CAN YOU BELIEVE IT'S TAKEN 20 YEARS RESEARCH FOR THIS BLOKE TO CONCLUDE THAT DOGS DO NOT BEHAVE THE SAME AS WOLVES??!!

He could have saved so much time by coming to stay with me for a few days. After all, what wolf:

  • Goes to bed every night with a hot water bottle?
  • Likes more than anything else to be picked up and cuddled by a human?
  • Thinks everyone in the whole world will be his friend?
  • Writes a blog?

Oh. Wait a minute. Gail is telling me maybe there's more to it than not being a wolf. The author is saying that dog behaviour is all about sociability and cooperation rather than strict hierarchies. So the idea that us dogs need to dominated by their human is quite wrong.

This is beginning to sound much more interesting.

I have to tell you that Gail is only about half the way through the book, so if she finds out anything else useful, I'll pass it on.

*Anthrozoologist: that's someone who studies the science of human-animal interactions

20 comments:

  1. A most sensible book. Me thinks neither Bertie nor Wilf are American timber wolves .

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  2. The term "a wolf in fox terrier clothing" could spring to mind Bertie.
    But no, on reflection, the hot water bottle seals it. You're definitely a big softie.

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  3. We're not exactly wolf material either. The hierarchy here is based on thumbs.

    XXXOOO Daisy, Kendra & Bella

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  4. Wolves don't have little fingers with which to wrap a human around! Nuff said!

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  5. Well, duh, Bertie, am I right? All she had to do was ask you.

    Slobbers,
    Mango

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  6. Yep. alls he needed to do was come and ask you Bertie, cuz you have the 411!! When will humans ever learn?? BOL

    wags
    Jazzi and Addy

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  7. You don't looks like a wolf....me don't looks like a wolf....so, scientifically, we has nothin' to do with wolves. Right?

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  8. Wolf? Wolf? Where's da wolf, Bertie Bud?
    ...I'm gonna check things out here in our doghold, because I suspect da King has some wolf in him.
    ...ummmm...He's curled up on the couch. Does that count?
    sending lotsalicks
    TOBY IN SA

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  9. Are you kidding me? 20 years! Oh Bertie you could write a better book and it would only take you a month or 2 am I right?? Sure, will all our help we would be able to tell all the peeps that.... oh, ah, never mind, this guys book is ok with me. I almost lost my mind, how could we ever tell all the peeps our secrets. Sorry bout that. I is under lots of pressure to grow out my furs and I had a moment of insanity.

    woos, Tessa

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  10. I've never seen a wolf looking like me before!

    Nubbin wiggles,
    Oskar

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  11. I have big ole teeth like a wolf but think that I'd rather just be their dog than have to live in the wilderness...even if I do chase rabbits and dig to the high heavens!!! Looking forward to hearing more about it.

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  12. Oh my word! They could have just asked you!!
    Benny & Lily

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  13. A hot water bottle, Bertie? and you don't chew it? You are so lucky!!

    -Gizmo, Bart and Ruby

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  14. That DOES sound like a good read.

    Keep us posted, Bertie.

    Love and licks, Winnie

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  15. I've always thought of myself as a dog in Golden Retriever clothing, whereas I am begining to suspect that the young pup is actually a wolf in Golden Retriever clothing! It seems that my human needs to check out that book for me and see how it measures up to your own observations.

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  16. Sounds like a good summer read. My sister Stanzie acts more like a coyote than a wolf...BOL
    I would like to be a wolf, can a wolf be a mama's boy?

    Wyatt

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  17. Hello Bertie (& Gail). Thanks for visiting my blog. We are v fond of WFTs in this house, having previously rehomed 2 rescues called Watson and Jackson.

    Your new pal, Noodles (& J1)

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  18. Ahha..she has this book on her list!

    Wonder if that means we can have a hot water bottle each?

    Big Nose Pokes
    The Thugletsx

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  19. Most interesting. Being as the hu-apes have been monkeying with our DNA for thousands of years, how could they possibly think we're anything like wolves any more? Still, any book with a reasonable scientific basis [or even an unreasonable scientific basis :)] that defends canine rights sounds good to us.

    Jed & Abby

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