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)
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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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