Poll: Do you understand your pet’s emotions?

TED Blog

A delighted dog hangs out with his best friend, a deer. Animals clearly have the ability to form friendships, and Laurel Braitman believes they also experience mental illness. Below, our survey on pet emotions. Photo: Courtesy of Laurel Braitman A delighted dog hangs out with his best friend, the deer. Animals clearly show emotions, says science historian Laurel Braitman in her TED Talk. Which leads to the question: do you understand your pet’s feelings? Photo: Isobel Springett

Pets: they are just like us. Well, maybe.

In her TED Talk, “Depressed dogs, cats with OCD—what animal madness means for us humans,” Laurel Braitman shares her seven years of research on the mental health of animals. “What I discovered is that I do believe they can suffer from mental illness, and [that] trying to identify mental illness in them can help us be better friends to them,” says Braitman, a TED Fellow, in the talk. “Even though you can’t know exactly what’s going on in the mind of a pig or your pug or your partner, that shouldn’t stop you from empathizing with them.”

This got us curious to ask: Do you feel in tune…

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