Genetics

The Thoughtful Animal

Category archives for Genetics

Ah, Thanksgiving. A day full of turkey, cranberries, pie, and, of course, SCIENCE! After you fill your stomach with gravy and stuffing, stuff your mind with all this great Thanksgiving science. What’s any good Thanksgiving feast without some turkey? Emily Anthes of Wonderland starts the meal off with an offering of thanks for the turkey’s…

Here at The Thoughtful Animal, we are conducting series of seven-question interviews with people who are doing or have done animal research of all kinds – biomedical, behavioral, cognitive, and so forth. Interested in how animal research is conducted, or why animal research is important? Think you might want to do some animal research of…

At least one dog can be found in forty percent of US households, and forty percent of those owners allow their dogs to sleep on their beds. To put this in perspective, in a family with five children, two of them can be expected to become dog owners, and one of them will probably allow…

Monday Pets on Scientific American!

For today’s dose of monday pet blogging, head on over to a piece that I wrote for Scientific American that went up today. I used the invitation as an opportunity to a dig a little deeper into the story of Belyaev and his domesticated silver foxes (I previously wrote about them, here and here)

Dogs are pretty smart. They can have huge vocabularies, they can infer meaning in the growls of other dogs, and they can effortlessly figure out if other dogs want to play or fight with them. But their intelligence might be limited to the social domain; indeed, while they outperform chimpanzees in social tasks, chimpanzees outperform…

Figure 1: A mother hyena with her cubs. Early developmental experiences can have significant implications for the growth, behavior, survival, and reproductive success of an individual. In many species, one of the most important factors that affects an individual’s early development is the maternal environment. However, mothers not only provide an environment for their offspring,…

I’ve decided I want to cover some recent research on social cognition in domesticated dogs. But first, we need some background. So here’s a repost from the old blog. Today I want to tell you about one of my most favorite studies, ever, of animals. Are you ready? It’s a FIFTY YEAR LONG longitudinal study…

Happy Birthday, Mom!

A song for Mom’s birthday. The best gift (by my own calculation) I ever gave my mother was a custom mousepad with an MRI image of my brain on it. I don’t think that this youtube video comes close, but one can only give so many MRI mousepads before it becomes a little redundant.

Let me tell you a little story. When I was born my parents had two cats. One was named Garfield. The other…well, I don’t remember what the other one was called. Not long after I was born, and little Jason was coughing up furballs, the doctors informed the parents that their little bundle of skin…