Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Inside of a Dog: What Dogs See, Smell and Know

I highly recommend reading Inside of a Dog by Alexandra Horowitz. Her approach is from the perspective of a dog lover as well as a scientist. Unlike the many authors who present inaccurate guesses about what is going on with our best friends, Horowitz provides personal experience backed up with scientific understandings.

Pumpernickel, her canine soul mate, is all dog and all best friend to her human. You can't help loving her vicariously, and being grateful that Horowitz knew her so well and presented her so respectfully and lovingly, yet honestly. They seemed to understand each other as well as any two beings of different species could.

Some of her most interesting chapter titles include From the Dog's Point of Nose, Unwolfy, Whimpers, growls, squeaks and chuckles, What a dog knows, and It either fits in the mouth or it's too big for the mouth.

Horowitz's writing style is invitingly informative. Besides shedding light on the human-canine bond, and educating us about canine senses, she entertainingly explains concepts such as attention seeking, theory of mind, telling time and reading us.

I came away from this book loving dogs more, if that is possible, and taking them less for granted. There are so many reasons why they are our best friend; this book provides scientific evidence along with celebration.

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