Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Animal Behavior

Perhaps I have lived on the farm just a little too long,
out of touch with reality (just a tad),
I have come to a couple of conclusions.

Those people who say that animal behavior is purely the result of instinct
have never owned an animal.

Those people who say that animals don't have emotions or feelings
have never owned an animal.

Ok, so I tend to be a little anthropomorphic.
And this is where perhaps living a rather solitary life in the country comes into play.

But... I've got to say...
I see so much of human behavior in my animals.
Luckily, it is usually the best part of human behavior that I witness in them.
The worst part seems to be a trait of only humans.
When animals do something horrid, it is usually for the right reasons.
(not usually the case with humans)

Every day I am treated to the unlikely friendships between different species
and observe deep affection between them.

I have witnessed the extraordinary grief that an animal
can show at the loss of a herd member.

There is nothing sweeter than the care and concern
that one nurturing animal can show another.

And then there are the moments when behavior is unexplainable,
except perhaps to say that it is just "fun"... that's all.

My animals have taught me so much about living a good life.
And there is no doubt in my mind that those beings have a soul.
They are so much more than just instinctive creatures.
They are more like us than most believe.

If they only had a voice,
I know they would tell us this is true.


  1. They totally speak to me. I am so surprised by the interactions between your animals....and mine.

    The girls have really amazed me. They want affection and holding...who knew? They are all about love, aren't they?

  2. I could not live without animals, and I am happy that my love of animals has rubbed off on my kids, to the point that the three eldest are committed vegetarians (I am not, but probably would be if it weren't for my meat-loving partner). I do, however, refuse to eat pork.
    Right now I am sitting on the couch with a cat curled up to the left of me and a dog to the right.
    Someone in blogland recently posted a video of 2 elephants who were reunited after many years of separation. (Maybe it was here?) It was so moving to see how these animals responded to each other, and after watching it no one could argue that animals don't experience emotions or have souls!

    Kathy from Tasmania

  3. I agree so much we have two labs and they really think there human

  4. I see the caring and sharing between our two pups every day. Playing with, cleaning, kissing, eating and sleeping together, happy looks, wags, snuggling... they run the gamut of emotions just like humans... I see the same in your animals all amongst the species in your barnyard. All such gentle creatures. :-)))

  5. Wouldn't you love to know what they would say. When my kids were little Martha Speaks was their favorite book. Its about a dog who eats alphabet soup and the has the ability to speak. Sooo cute.

  6. So true ! This is part of why I miss living on a hobby farm. I loved growing up with all the animals and their antics ,they do develope their own charcaters , personalities and feelings, even our Miggy and Harley here respond with attitude , feeling happy, or sad or even feel ill or a bit off , just like we do and they do learn emotion from us I believe that, They know if we are ticked, sad or happy and they react to it. its just not many other people then I have taken the time to see this, notice or even study it other then yourself . The song talk to the animals is so true they do understand and are vocal towards your voice and what you say Our Miggy and Harley are very vocal when we speak to them ! AWESOME ! photos and post ! Have a wonderful day !

  7. Perhaps it is more the opposite - the best part of humans is their natural animal behavior? Just something to chew on a bit.

    Really enjoy the blog - look forward to the daily photos and stories from your beautiful homestead.

  8. Love the photos from this mornings post. I so agree that animals have emotions. Even though all I have is my girls(chicks) and Jazi(dog) it is amazing how they react to each other let alone me. Here's to a great day, Hugs!!

  9. Those who have never experienced what an animal has to offer are missing lot..I've always been suspicious of people who don't like animals..something is missing in them...You are fortunate to be able spend so much time with them and what a variety!!!

  10. I could not agree with you more! Your view and insight on animals is one of the things I so enjoy about reading your blog. As for me, we currently enjoy the companionship of 3 dogs and 2 chickens (we're city dwellers -- argh!), but I actually learned the most from a little squirrel that lived in our house with us for 4 years. Long story, but she had fallen from a tree and we ended up just having her live in the house with us. I read articles from the "experts" that said that a squirrel could never, never, never be tamed. Luckily, I didn't see that part until after we had her for a year or so. This untamable squirrel let me hold her, kiss on her, and "gobble" on her little belly. We went outside to play every day and when it was time to come in, she would let me pick her up and take her in. The capacity for love in animals is just amazing!

  11. There is so much the human species could learn if we were quiet and listened and observed.

  12. I totally believe that animals have a soul and that they will be in heaven! The reason why I can't eat pig or cow now!

  13. Totally agree! I see two sweet kittens playing amongst the three Boer goats (about 9 months) and they are the best of friends.


  14. Oh Bev, I couldn’t agree more--they do have a soul and they teach us how we should strive to be. In other words, I strive to be the person my dog thinks I am :)
    Hugs, Amy

  15. Bev,
    I couldn't agree more. Unfortunately, it's fresh in my mind due to a recent sad event. One of my goats miscarried twins this weekend. It is completely apparent that she is grieving. It's heartbreaking, and there is no doubt that she is experiencing emotions.


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