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An Amazon Best Book of the Month, June 2014: As a kid, Laurel Braitman read Charlotte’s Web and suspected that animals really could talk. As a PhD student at MIT studying scientific history, she again honed in on animals in her research. But it wasn’t until she and her husband adopted a Bernese Mountain Dog named Oliver that animal psychology became the puzzle she most urgently wanted to solve. Oliver was inexplicably, uncontrollably anxious, snapping at invisible flies and shredding furniture when he was left alone. When he chewed through a screen, leapt from a fourth-story window, and—incredibly--survived, Braitman became intent on finding a way to help him. In Animal Madness, she shares how “one anxious dog brought me the entire animal kingdom.” Elements of memoir make the story more poignant, but it’s primarily a lively, deeply researched history and an unflinching look at the trauma of modern-day captivity in medical labs and faux-natural zoos. What she discovered about how animal minds go awry and the ways their disorders--from depression to anxiety to OCD and PTSD--look so much like our own (and vice versa) challenge and transform our understanding of the animal experience. What she discovered about how they heal illuminates how humans, too, can come back from the brink. --Mari Malcolm
why should we be surprised that animals suffer emotional disturbances just like human animals do?Published 16 days ago by M Duvall
Absolutely loved this book. For the naysayers who point out that the author isn't an animal behaviorist or psychologist, who cares? That is why authors do research! Read morePublished 26 days ago by Judith A. Welch
This is an interesting book and an interesting thesis. It is really more about us (we people) than about animals, and how we project what we are thinking about our mental health... Read morePublished 3 months ago by M. Spencer
Humans are lucky animals.
We aren’t particularly strong, fast, or resilient, we can’t peck through solid pine, generate perfectly symmetrical calcium shells, fly, change... Read more
A real thought provoking book filled with views of many animals minds and feelings and how not unlike humans they truly are.Published 5 months ago by Patricia M. Conway
A constant enlightening journey of discovery; a beautifully documented work.Published 5 months ago by jill a. weinstein
Braitman's heart is out in full force in this book. Compassionate yet smart, she puts animal "misbehavior" into context for all of us to understand. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Vickie Sullivan
I met Laurel at a memorial service for my Uncle, Mel Richardson, a DVM and animal rights activist who assisted her with her research. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Larry Cottle