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February 16 2013

Animals’ Love Lives Look a Lot Like Ours


For most of the 20th century, animals weren’t allowed to have emotions. Your dog didn’t actually love you—it (and it was an “it” back then) was just a stimulus–response machine conditioned to act a specific way in a specific situation. Scientists who said otherwise—that animals actually had minds capable of thoughts and emotions—were accused of “anthropomorphizing” and ridiculed by their peers. Even researchers as famous as chimp specialist Jane Goodall spent years sitting on evidence that animals could do more than just salivate at the sound of a bell.

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