Thoughts from the Wild

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Is Your Cat Aloof or Intuitive? Researchers Want to Know

October 24, 2019

Rightly or wrongly, cats have earned a reputation for being independent and aloof. But does your cat actually pick up on your social cues, and then simply play hard to get? Researchers at the Oregon State University Human-Animal Interaction Laboratory are currently examining cat social skills, or how cats relate to us as human beings. …

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Dogs at Work: TSA Dogs Tackle Security Before Takeoff

June 27, 2019

Transportation Security Administration (TSA) dogs can’t prevent turbulence during your flight, but they can help you fly through security a little faster. Trained to sniff out a range of explosives at airports and other transportation hubs, these dogs can screen passengers — without touching them — faster than traditional methods. And that helps loosen airport …

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A Fracas at the Food Bowl: Food Guarding in Dogs

June 6, 2019

Almost every dog relishes the food dish. Many dogs will show their enthusiasm by spinning in circles or dancing on their hind legs when the bowl makes an appearance. But once the bowl is on the floor, some dogs can become downright territorial, growling, lunging and even biting if anyone approaches their bowl. It’s mine, …

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May Showers Can Bring Storm Phobias

May 2, 2019

Is your dog afraid of thunder? Does the pitter-pat of rain on the roof have a less-than-calming effect on your pet? Dogs with storm phobias, it seems, are better at predicting thunderstorms than the weather forecasters. Long before the first dark cloud rolls in, these dogs may pant and pace around the house or cling …

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Step Right Up: It’s Circus Dogs

December 13, 2018

In its time, few things offered more entertainment in one place than the Barnum & Bailey Circus. Within three different rings, you could marvel at sword swallowers, trapeze artists, contortionists and strongmen. In addition to human entertainers, the circus showed off animal acts, enlisting animals with special talents. In fact, the circus employed a menagerie …

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