ANIMAL FEELINGS by Sylvia Funston


Age Range: 8 - 12
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paper 1-895688-81-7 If a dolphin looks like it is having fun, or a cat appears to enjoy torturing a mouse before a kill, is there any way humans can discern if the animals are experiencing emotions? There’s still much scientists don’t know, but in recent years, the longstanding belief that animals don’t have emotions has been challenged. This is especially true in studies involving animals with higher levels of intelligence, e.g., chimps, dolphins, and crows. Funston explores incidents in which animals seemed to display emotion; she is level-headed in her approach, explaining how dolphins smile (it’s all in the shape of their mouths) and how cats batting mice around are simply programmed to hunt. Other cases may not be so clear-cut. There are fascinating examples, e.g., of chimp self-awareness when they recognize their own reflections in the mirror, of animals “helping” others, and some evidence of hope, fear, and other emotions that were previously considered solely the province of humans. Large full-color photographs and illustrations display some of the intriguing possibilities of animals and the prospect of their “emotions.” Guaranteed to be a hit. (index) (Nonfiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Dec. 1st, 1998
ISBN: 1-895688-82-5
Page count: 48pp
Publisher: Firefly
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15th, 1998