“Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel” by Carl Safina – Book Review

There are many different books written about the emotional and cognitive lives of animals (excluding humans, of course). One that instantly stands out is “Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel”, which is written by Dr. Carl Safina, award-winning writer and scientist. According to most people this is the very best book of its kind and the truth is that it is quite hard to argue with this. This book includes many compelling stories and facts about different animals most people love.

From the moment you read the description of this book you will be intrigued. It states:

“I wanted to know what they were experiencing, and why to us they feel so compelling, and so-close. This time I allowed myself to ask them the questions that for a scientist was forbidden fruit: Who are you?”

Carl Safina gives us a landmark book that manages to offer an animal behavior intimate view that challenges the boundary between nonhuman and human animals. You will be taken to exotic and rare spots like Amboseli National park or Yellowstone National Park in order to learn about the animals residing there. Then, you will learn about some extraordinary animals featuring their anger, love, jealousy and grief. By the time the book is done you will surely be surprised to see how many similarities exist between what we see as animals and humans. It is hard not to want to re-evaluate your interaction with most animals after you read Beyond Words.

One example of a really interesting thing you will find is an experiment that was observed with dogs. It was shown through that experiment that the dog that is faced with lying humans sometimes refuse to do an action simply because they realize the fact that something is wrong, that the human is trying to trick them. Some of the experiments that the humans create in order to answer some questions related to animal cognitive capacities will never be able to answer everything in a correct way. It is much better to observe.

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The hard truth, which is also highlighted in this book, is that even humans have problem to understand human needs. They cannot properly predict the actions of other people. Humans tend to assume that animals do not have consciousness but that is definitely incorrect. When you analyze your animals you quickly manage to figure out the fact that this helps you to better understand yourself.

Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel is a book that is highly recommended, one that any animal lover is going to truly appreciate. This is why it reached such a huge global audience. So many different topics and animals are covered and the references that are presented are quite impressive. This is a gem book. You are going to surely appreciate information about animal moral, emotional and cognitive life. Proof is presented, which is not something we often see as we look at similar books. Go through the book and you are definitely going to recommend it to others.