Empathy and Animals
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Empathy and Animals
International News and Information about Empathy and Compassion with, by and for Animals - for more see: CultureOfEmpathy.com
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Dogs May Show Empathy With Humans When It Comes To Yawning

Dogs May Show Empathy With Humans When It Comes To Yawning | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Do you ever notice that when you yawn, those who are around you tend to yawn as well? And vice versa? Well that contagious expression even crosses the species barrier, as dogs are also capable of catching yawns from humans.

 

But why dogs catch our yawns has been a mystery, until now. A new study has found that dogs yawn even when they only hear the sound of us yawning, the strongest evidence yet that our canine companions may be able to understand us.

The study, presented at the National Ethology Congress in Lisbon, and to be published in an upcoming issue of the journal Animal Cognition, found that nearly half of all dogs yawned when played a recording of a human being making such a noise.

 

Source: Lawrence LeBlond

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Revealed: why canines yawn after their 'dog tired' owners

Revealed: why canines yawn after their 'dog tired' owners | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Dogs are compelled to yawn if they hear their owners do the same, a study has suggested.

 

Researchers claimed that dogs responded only to an audio cue such as a yawn even if they didn’t see the action taking place. The study found this was particularly noticeable when the dogs were listening to the yawns of people they knew.


Scientists suggested the findings, presented at the National Ethology Congress in Lisbon, showed canines had empathy to human behaviours.


“These results suggest that dogs have the capacity to empathise with humans,” said lead author Karine Silva, from the University of Porto, Portugal.

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Dogs can 'catch' yawns from human beings - but only from their owners

Dogs can 'catch' yawns from human beings - but only from their owners | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Dogs can 'catch' yawns from humans - but it seems to work best when there's a bond between dog and man. Dogs yawn even when they only hear the sound of their owners doing the same, researchers have found.

 

In her report behavioral biologist Karine Silva, the lead researcher, said: ‘These results suggest that dogs have the capacity to empathise with humans’.

 

By ROB WAUGH

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Video: What is your dog thinking? Brain scans unleash canine secrets

Video: What is your dog thinking? Brain scans unleash canine secrets | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

The researchers aim to decode the mental processes of dogs by recording which areas of their brains are activated by various stimuli. Ultimately, they hope to get at questions like: Do dogs have empathy? Do they know when their owners are happy or sad? How much language do they really understand?

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Brain scans show dogs have empathy

Brain scans show dogs have empathy | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Does your dog understand when you are happy or sad? Well, it seems so, as they are found paying very close attention to their masters’ moods, scientists say. Researcher at the Emory University Centre for Neuropolicy used functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to look at the brain activities of an active dog and found some of them pay very close attention to their owners.

 

img http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dog

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Teaching Kids Animal Compassion: Choosing the Right Pet is Key

Teaching Kids Animal Compassion: Choosing the Right Pet is Key | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it
Children can learn so many valuable lessons by caring for a pet.

 

Having pets also teaches children that animals are not expendable items. If children are involved in the daily care of animals, it can help to make them a more compassionate person later in life. Over the years I have been able to follow kids who first owned pets in elementary school as they grow up through high school, and I have seen them grow up to be compassionate young adults.

 

On the other hand, kids that don’t get the experience of having a pet early may become afraid of animals, especially if their parents don’t particularly care for animals. But even parents who aren’t crazy about pets or did not own them as kids can help change this trend.

 

by Dr. Tim Hunt

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SPCA Animals Summer Camps: Children learn about compassion and empathy when caring for animals

SPCA Animals Summer Camps: Children learn about compassion and empathy when caring for animals | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Some children are intuitively compassionate and empathetic, even in a competitive society where these virtues are often not celebrated or encouraged.

 

Compassion and empathy are characteristics of nurturing behaviour. Providing a place where kids, especially boys, can demonstrate nurturing behaviour towards other living beings is part of what makes the BC SPCA Among Animals summer camps unique.  Kids will have opportunities to explore the needs of companion animals, farm animals and wildlife.

 

 http://bit.ly/HQ7oV8

 

SCHOOL BREAK & HOLIDAY ANIMAL CAMPS

http://bit.ly/IXOiLY

 

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Should Chimpanzees Have Moral Standing? An Interview with Frans de Waal

Should Chimpanzees Have Moral Standing? An Interview with Frans de Waal | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Whether from hubris or insecurity, humans like to view our species as the crown of creation, beings beyond compare in the animal kingdom, as if our advanced cognitive and behavioral skills appeared de novo with the emergence of the Homo lineage. Few have done more to demonstrate the folly of such an anthropocentric view than Frans de Waal.

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Empathy

Empathy | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

I admit that I am probably too empathetic. I know the science and the biology, and yet I still anthropomorphize and cast human emotions on living things that may not have them...

 

Empathy is “an affective response, more appropriate to another’s situation than one’s own.” Translated, the ability to imagine one’s self in a position of another and genuinely feel what he is feeling. The study, in a nutshell, said that if you want to encourage people to care about something outside their immediate world, you need to foster empathy toward other living things, and that this is largely a role that nature educators should play...

 

by Jennifer Schlick

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'Fowl behavior' helps close empathy gap

'Fowl behavior' helps close empathy gap | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

 Like people, chickens are social animals who like company. They also establish a hierarchy within the flock, commonly referred to as the "pecking order," which can lead to bullying and brutal treatment, and the eventual isolation of the victim...

 

The purpose of the program is to help students to understand the severity of the social trauma that bullying can cause, and to help close the "empathy gap" that often leads to a lack of support for victims of teasing, ostracism, harassment and physical intimidation.

 

By Dina Samfield

 

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PETA wants to turn Va. prison into 'chicken empathy museum'

PETA wants to turn Va. prison into 'chicken empathy museum' | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

An animal rights group wants to rent a prison building the state plans to close and turn it into the nation's first chicken empathy museum. 

 

A People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals official sent a letter today to Gov. Timothy M. Kaine asking to rent the Botetourt Correctional Center building in Troutville.

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Empathy and Taking Animal Cruelty Out Of Education

Empathy and Taking Animal Cruelty Out Of Education | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

ANIMAL EDUCATION

Most students dread the day where they must dissect an animal for biology class. Although the practice has become less common in schools, the discussion continues over whether the educational benefit of dissections outweighs the damaging effects on the development of empathy and compassion in children. In this preview from her upcoming book Why Children Need Animals, child psychiatrist Dr. Sujatha Ramakrishna discusses why animal dissections in schools and universities do more harm than good. — Global Animal

 

February 28, 2012 Tazi Phillips

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Animals and Society Institute - Empathy and Attitudes

Animals and Society Institute - Empathy and Attitudes | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Recognizing that "Knowledge of the factors influencing attitudes toward animals has implications for prevention and intervention in cases of cruelty," researchers from Hofstra University and New York University examined how empathy and personality traits of 241 undergraduate students aged 18-46 affected their attitudes toward animals..

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The present study offers further evidence that empathy is a critical variable in both the understanding and treatment of animal abuse. Previous studies have shown high empathy among animal activists and low empathy in individuals who abuse animals. Here, using a general population (non-clinical and non-advocate) sample, the authors find that empathy (as distinguished from four other major personality variables) correlates with positive attitudes toward animals.

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Can dogs feel what we feel?

Can dogs feel what we feel? | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Have you tried yawning next to your dog? Have you noticed your little pal yawning after you did? Yes, yawning is a contagious behavior but not all species in the animal kingdom gets affected with it. However, dogs are an exception, just like the gelada baboons, stump-tail macaques, and chimpanzees that also yawn.

 

In fact, a new research found out that everytime dogs hear the sound of his master yawning, they will also yawn. This behavior is now considered as the strongest proof that dogs can relate to what humans feel.

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Study shows a recording of human yawning makes dogs yawn too

Study shows a recording of human yawning makes dogs yawn too | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

A new study shows that dogs can "catch" a yawn from the sound of a human being yawning. The study showed that dogs imitate yawns more readily from their owners than from strangers. Researchers say this suggests dogs have the capacity for empathy....

 

The latest study to be published in the July 2012 edition of Animal Cognition, was designed to test whether the phenomenon of contagious yawning between humans and dogs could be linked to empathy. Researchers reasoned that if dogs can catch a yawn from a human by simply listening to the recorded sound of a human yawning, without physically seeing the person, then it is likely that the phenomenon is an indication of empathy.

 

By JohnThomas Didymus

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Some Pets 'Catch' Yawns From Humans, Study Suggests

Some Pets 'Catch' Yawns From Humans, Study Suggests | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Yawn next to your dog, and she may do the same. Though it seems simple, this contagious behavior is actually quite remarkable: Only a few animals do it, and only dogs cross the species barrier. Now a new study finds that dogs yawn even when they only hear the sound of us yawning, the strongest evidence yet that canines may be able to empathize with us.

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Can fMRI scans show what your dog is thinking?

Can fMRI scans show what your dog is thinking? | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Emory University researchers have begun a project to scan the brains of alert dogs using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) and see how they react to hand signals from their owners.

 

The aim is to understand dogs' thinking by recording which areas of their brains are activated when they interact with humans. Ultimately, the team hopes to answer questions such as whether dogs have empathy, and how much language they really understand.
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Compassion For Farm Animals

Compassion For Farm Animals | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Gene Baur is the president and co-founder of Farm Sanctuary, an organization whose mission is to promote compassionate living through the rescue of farm animals, education and advocacy. A vegan since 1985, Baur has been called “the conscience of the food movement.
 

“Farm animals, like all animals, have feelings,” Baur says. “They have complex cognitive abilities… and they deserve to be treated with respect and compassion.”

 

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Frans de Waal: We Should Only Do Experiments on Chimpanzees That We're Willing to Do on Humans

Frans de Waal: We Should Only Do Experiments on Chimpanzees That We're Willing to Do on Humans | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Frans de Waal knows about chimpanzees. He has been studying primate behavior since 1975, and he currently serves as the C. H. Candler Professor of Psychology at Emory University and Director of the Living Links Center at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center. He has written numerous books about primates, and his most recent book,The Age of Empathy, explores the evolutionary origins of morality, empathy, and emotions.

 

As we learn more about our animal kin, the issue of medical experimentation becomes more contentious, especially regarding chimpanzees and other primates.

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Equine Therapy: Learning Empathy from a Horse

Equine Therapy: Learning Empathy from a Horse | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

While those in the world of mindfulness may be well aware, that empathy toward others is a recipe for a feeling of well being within oneself, for many people, just how to increase a sense of empathy can be a challenging subject.

 

This, of course is complicated when many people struggle with feeling empathetic toward others. To be sure, when empathy isn’t expressed, it isn’t gained either. So if this is the case, how does one go about increasing empathy? And, further, is it possible that animals, namely horses, can help us to feel more empathetic toward one another?

 

http://bit.ly/HhtLBK ;

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Study: Measuring empathic responses in animals

Study: Measuring empathic responses in animals | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Domestic animals may be frequently exposed to situations in which they witness the distress or pain of conspecifics and the extent to which they are affected by this will depend on their capacity for empathy. Empathy encompasses two partially distinct sets of processes concerned with the emotional and cognitive systems.

 

The term, empathy, is therefore used to describe both relatively simple processes, such as physiological and behavioural matching; and more complex interactions between emotional and cognitive perspective taking systems.

 

Most previous attempts to measure empathic responsiveness in animals have not distinguished between responses primarily relevant to the situation of the observer and those primarily relevant to the situation of the conspecific. Only the latter can be considered empathic.

 

by J.L. Edgar, , C.J. Nicol, C.C.A. Clark, E.S. Paul

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Equine Therapy: Learning Empathy from a Horse

Equine Therapy: Learning Empathy from a Horse | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

While those in the world of midfulness may be well aware that empathy toward others is a recipe for a feeling of wellbeing within oneself, for many people, just how to increase a sense of empathy can be a challenging subject. This, of course is complicated when many people struggle with feeling empathetic towad others.

 

To be sure, when empathy isn’t expressed, it isn’t gained either. So if this is the case, how does one go about increasing empathy? And, further, is it possible that animals, namely horses, can help us to feel more empatheic toward one another?...

 

So now, let’s take a look at how horses may help us increase empathy... we know that interaction with animals also increases oxytocin, and particularly in the case of horses, mutual understanding....

 

By CLAIRE DOROTIK 

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AUDIO: Science Today | How socioeconomic status affects empathy

AUDIO: Science Today | How socioeconomic status affects empathy | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it
Narrator: This is Science Today. Emotional differences between the rich and the poor may be more than just in the eye of the beholder. A new study by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, found that people in lower socio-economic classes are more attuned to the suffering of others, and quicker to express compassion than their upper-class counterparts.

 

Stellar: Participants of the lower social class were noticing more distress in their partners, so they were picking up signals that the person was stressed, which is going to promote a compassionate response.

 

Narrator: Graduate student Jennifer Stellar, who led the study, says it's not that the upper classes are coldhearted; they may just be less adept at recognizing the cues and signals of suffering because they haven't had to deal with as many obstacles in their lives.

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PETA Asks Kennedy Space Center to Open Chimpanzee Empathy Museum

PETA Asks Kennedy Space Center to Open Chimpanzee Empathy Museum | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

Memorial for Chimpanzees Abused in Early Space Program Would Bolster Legislative Effort to Have Their Kin Released From U.S. Labs Today

 

As PETA explains in its letter, the Chimpanzee Empathy Museum would highlight how many relatives of the space program's chimpanzees are still locked up in laboratories across the country. The museum would also urge visitors to call their legislators in support of the Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act, which is backed by more than 160 senators and representatives as well as actors Woody Harrelson, Ellen DeGeneres, and Alec Baldwin.

 

The act would permanently end the use of chimpanzees and all other great apes in invasive experiments, retire federally owned apes to sanctuaries, and save taxpayers millions of dollars a year.

 

img http://bit.ly/wgx0vK

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ingentaconnect The Relationship between Empathy and Personality in Undergraduate...

ingentaconnect The Relationship between Empathy and Personality in Undergraduate... | Empathy and Animals | Scoop.it

The majority of research investigating beliefs toward nonhuman animals has focused on vivisection or utilized populations with clear views on animal issues (e.g., animal rights activists). Minimal research has been conducted on what personality factors influence a nonclinical or nonadjudicated population's beliefs about the treatment of animals.

 

The purpose of the present study was to examine the role of empathy and personality traits in attitudes about the treatment of animals in 241 undergraduate students. Results indicated that those with high levels of empathy held more positive attitudes toward animals and more negative beliefs about animal cruelty than those with low levels of empathy. Some differences in participants' specific attitudes toward animals were found. Limitations and implications for future research are reviewed.

 

Authors: Eckardt Erlanger, Ann C.; Tsytsarev, Sergei V.

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