How is a dogís capacity to feel emotions new information?
Why does a dogís brain have to work like ours to prove that they deserve legal protection?
How many of our fellow animals do we have to poke, prod and scan before we admit what our hearts already know?
Are we going to have to rigorously test every species of animal on the planet before we decide they deserve the right to life and liberty (or whatever form of liberty their level of domestication permits)?
I know that from a scientific standpoint saying that animals have emotions (without a test to “prove it”) just sounds like anthropomorphizing and that Bernsís research was very benign in comparison to many tests done on animals in the past. But this study still seems to reflect the general speciesist bias of the scientific community.
I canít say where Berns is coming from on this point and he may well have had the best of intentions, but I donít need an M.R.I. scan to tell me that my dog friends are happy to see me when I come home or that they deserve to be treated with respect and kindness. Iím afraid science can only tell us so much. But our conscience gives us all the evidence we need.