HOW TO TALK TO YOUR ANIMALS
Jean Craighead George
Nature-writer George here offers insight into animal communication--specifically, how dogs, cats, birds, and horses "talk" with other members of their species, and how people can learn to communicate with (and train) their pets more effectively. George examines in some depth the ancestry and domestication of these four species of animals, as well as the natural social behavior of each and how each uses specific sounds, odors, expressions, and poses to make its feelings and desires, and also its social status, readily apparent. We learn that birds sing to advertise for a mate, claim property, or defend their territory. And that dogs, like their wolf ancestors, communicate to maintain social order and keep their group cohesive. To help clarify the meanings of various tail positions, ear movements, and facial expressions for each of the four species discussed, George also includes a number of illustrations (her own), as well as transliterated whinny, chirp, and meow charts. Despite an occasional supposition or claim that goes a bit too far (e.g., that parrots understand what they're saying), this is an informative and educational blend of personal observation (George herself has raised over 200 domestic and wild creatures) and findings of numerous renowned and lesser-known animal behaviorists.