Recent Articles

Can Spaying Lead to Bad Behavior?

March 5, 2009

On an episode of “It’s Me or the Dog,” a show on Animal Planet, British dog trainer Victoria Stilwell tackled the problem of a bull terrier that exhibited mounting behavior. The first solution was to send the dog for a time-out when he mounted. However, the mounting was so severe that the trainer finally recommended neutering, which solved the problem. This case raises two questions: What other behavioral issues can neutering help address, and what is the rate of success? In general, it would be expected that spaying or neutering most likely affects sexually dimorphic behaviors — those that are

Pets Predicting Earthquakes?

March 5, 2009

Haicheng, China, 1975. A massive earthquake hits. Buildings are demolished, roads destroyed, but thanks to an evacuation several hours earlier, thousands, possibly tens of thousands of human lives are saved. The Chinese claimed they’d predicted an earthquake within hours of its occurrence. Their forecasting system: animals. This success sparked the interest of the U.S. Geological Survey. What were animals cuing in on? How did their detection systems work? Could answers to these questions lead to the development of a high-tech earthquake forecasting system? Dr. Benjamin Hart, a veterinary behaviorist at the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine, was

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