Animal Behavior Book Club

By Liesl Wiesen, Behavior Coordinator

Last year, our Behavior Wellness Department started a book club for staff and volunteers at Animal Friends. The group explores dog, cat and rabbit behavior, animal-focused fiction, the latest thoughts on the animal/human bond and general zoological science. But, during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been unable to continue the program in-person, so we would like to invite you to join the club and enjoy the same books we have discussed.

Pit Bull: The Battle Over an American Icon By Bronwen Dickey

The author looks at the history of the Pit Bull in North America and examines how the perspective on the nature of the breed has changed over time and within different communities.

The Inner Life of Cats: The Science and Secrets of Our Mysterious Feline Companions By Thomas McNamee

McNamee presents the science of cat behavior in an accessible way by using it to better understand the behavior of his own cats and his relationship with them. The book not only provides information on the physical and mental development of a kitten into an adult cat, but also examines what we know of feline evolution and the history of cat-based culture.

Stories Rabbits Tell: A Natural and Cultural History of a Misunderstood Creature By Susan E. Davis and Margo Demello

Good books on the domestic rabbit can be hard to find because having rabbits as free roaming house pets is a relatively new practice. In this book, Davis and Demello explore the history of the human relationship with rabbits and the various roles they have served in addition to being companion animals. They also provides an intimate look into the daily lives and personalities of today’s domestic rabbit.

Animals Make Us Human: Creating the Best Life for Animals By Temple Grandin

Temple Grandin is a veterinarian who revolutionized animal welfare science through her work with animals in factory agriculture. She has spent her career teaching humans how to reframe their assumptions on how animals think, act, feel and perceive their environment.  In this book she addresses how we might makeover the environment to better meet the animals’ core emotional needs.

All Creatures Great and Small By James Herriot

This is childhood classic follows the daily struggle and humor of a country vet in Britain in the 1940’s. If you missed this series of books or the 1980’s BBC TV series, this is a must read!

The Companion Animal Psychology Facebook group runs an online book club for ten months of the year. The September book is Decoding Your Cat by The American College of Veterinary Behaviorists.

So, curl up with your four-legged best friend in your favorite reading spot and enjoy a good book on animals!

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