The powerful bond between humans and dogs is one that’s uniquely cherished. Loyal, obedient, and affectionate, they are truly “man’s best friend.” But do dogs love us the way we love them? Emory University neuroscientist Gregory Berns had spent decades using MRI imaging technology to study how the human brain works, but a different question still nagged at him: What is my dog thinking?
After his family adopted Callie, a shy, skinny terrier mix, Berns decided that there was only one way to answer that question - use an MRI machine to scan the dog’s brain. His colleagues dismissed the idea. Everyone knew that dogs needed to be restrained or sedated for MRI scans. But if the military could train dogs to operate calmly in some of the most challenging environments, surely there must be a way to train dogs to sit in an MRI scanner.
With this radical conviction, Berns and his dog would embark on a remarkable journey and be the first to glimpse the inner workings of the canine brain. Painstakingly, the two worked together to overcome the many technical, legal, and behavioral hurdles. Berns’s research offers surprising results on how dogs empathize with human emotions, how they love us, and why dogs and humans share one of the most remarkable friendships in the animal kingdom.
How Dogs Love Us answers the age-old question of dog lovers everywhere and offers profound new evidence that dogs should be treated as we would treat our best human friends: with love, respect, and appreciation for their social and emotional intelligence.
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“This book’s abundant appeal and value come from following Berns through the challenges of constructing the experiment and especially of training his dog to participate. ‘Like a catcher and pitcher,’ he writes, he and his dog ‘became a team.’ The satisfaction of that relationship perhaps explains why our two species have lived together so long and happily.” (The Boston Globe)
"A neuroscientist wonders what goes on in the minds of our pet dogs: Do we delude ourselves when we believe that they love us? [How Dogs Love Us is] a solid introduction to an appealing new area of research." (Kirkus)
"The book is as much a scientific exploration of how the canine brain might function as it is a deeply personal story about Berns's relationship with dogs as pets and colleagues. Ultimately that connection is what makes the book compelling." (Scientific American MIND)
College English professor who loves classic literature, psychology, neurology and hates pop trash like Twilight and Fifty Shades of Grey.
it must be said that this is an interesting book, and it does render some insight into the similarities--and dissimilarities--of animal neurology to our own. It should be read along with Temple Grandin's Animals Make Us Human and anything by Marc Beckoff, especially his The Emotional Lives Of Animals... Now, that said, know that the author is coming in from the point of view of neurology, and he does some question begging, particularly in regard to the assumption that neurology can "find" emotions--let alone love! Sure we can see that areas of the brain are at work at certain times--dogs feel pleasure when we pet them or show them affection--and it is beyond a doubt that animals have emotions. But to make the assertion that their much less developed brains have the same complicated feelings and thoughts that we call "love" is a mighty big leap. As animals have much less frontal cortex than we do and function much more out of the limbic system, I figure it one of two ways: 1) animals cannot contemplate their emotions the same as we do, and thus cannot feel something we call "love" OR 2) since animals can't rationalize their emotions or override them as easily as we do, they actually feel MORE DEEPLY than a human can. Now, which it is is anyone's guess, but an MRI alone is not going to do it. Enjoy this book. There is some very valuable science and some real insight here, but do take its final assumptions with a grain of kibble.
Take it everywhere. Well narrated
Hot dog rewards
I am very glad I found this book and audio version. I have lost meany loved pets and gives hope that perhaps we may be with them again
I really enjoyed this audiobook. It gave me a new perspective on dogs and how dogs think. I am a dog lover so it was particularly interesting to me. I think everyone who owns a dog or loves dogs should read or listen to this book. The performance was wonderful and the man's voice was pleasant to listen to.
I highly recommend this book
Sometimes I got a little disinterested in this book but for the most part I really enjoyed it. I'm a huge dog lover and it has helped me see my adorable Jack in a clearer light.
I love the passion the author has for his dogs and the passion for science. Only true dog people, not to be mistaken with dog owners, would understand why he did what he did.
As a RN with 5 years of Neurology experience, it was easy. I am sure that if you know nothing about radiology or neuroscience, it will be a little hard to follow.
I know that because my husband was a little (a lot) lost.
Kelly chasing the ducks by the river and when she cuddled with the author (awwwww).
I would not make a film about this book. Unless the movie was for Vet, Radiology or Neuroscience students.
If you are not into medical terminology and scientific studies, skip to chapter 23. Before that, the content is 90% study. VERY INTERESTING but, if you are looking for a mushy confy book, skip to chapter 24.
This book totally lacked substance. Misleading in title and description. The majority of the weak story was about preparing for and testing. After hours of listening it sounded as if the story was finally getting to the topic expected and there was less than 20 minutes left of the book. Very disappointing.
Finally, someone who realizes a dog is not a wolf in dog's clothing! Excellent in every way, and makes me appreciate my dogs all the more. Thank you, Dr. Berns!
The story and delivery was great. My only complaint is the weird overdub for one of the dog's names that continues throughout the book. It seems like they changed the name after the book was recorded and made a quick fix. It is certainly not a reason to avoid listening to the book, however. The story is wonderful.
I bought this book to learn 'how dogs love us' and still feel this was left very much unanswered. It should have another title, such as 'The history of me -- a scientist -- and how I came to eventually do MRIs on some dogs -- the blow-by-blow account, including weather reports' or 'How scientists can digress to meet a word count target'.
There are twenty-odd chapters of the hows, whys, whens, wheres, whats, whos and the final couple of chapters touch on what may be results of the tests.
It could be of interest to anyone wanting to understand MRI imaging or a nosey acquaintance wanting to get a glimpse of the author's personal relationships with family/dogs, but if you want to know how dogs love us, you won't find too many answers here.
I would not buy a book by this author again.
The narrator did a great job. His voice was easy to listen to and not the kind that makes your mind switch off (like some others can).
Anger, frustration, wasted my money.
Author seems like a nice person which is why this is getting two stars instead of one.
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