By John A. Shivik
Any pet lover can tell you that the relationship between humans and their four-footed friends is more akin to family tie than to animal and caretaker. Most of us would vow that our pets’ reactions and behaviors are intuitive and emotional not just instinctual and transactional, although heretofore there was little support for that opinion from the scientific community.
However, recent years have brought an increased understanding of animal intelligence and emotion. A fundamental shift in scientific understanding is underway, as mainstream scientists begin to accept the idea that animals of all kinds – from beloved beasts like apes and birds to decidedly less cuddly creatures like crabs and spiders – do indeed have individual personalities.
In Mousy Cats and Sheepish Coyotes, Dr. John A. Shivik, veteran wildlife expert, cites new research that shows personalities can be discovered in every corner of the animal kingdom – even among microscopic organisms. The array of personality types among all species is only beginning to be understood. In fact, animals’ unique personalities are important not only because they determine which animals we bond with, Mousy Cats and Sheepish Coyotes offers insight into the similarities humans share with animals and presents evidence of an unbroken biological connection from the smallest organisms to Homo sapiens.