Have you ever been driving down the road or walking through the mall when you suddenly feel like someone is following you — even though no one else is around at all? Or have you ever had this strange feeling that someone just walked over your grave? If so, then you’ve been stalked by your own mind!
You may be having déjà vu or thinking about past events that happened long ago but seem fresh today. This phenomenon can happen because our brains tend to filter out information from our conscious minds and store it away for later processing, especially when we think we’re dealing with new situations. We usually aren’t consciously aware that we’ve done this until something triggers those old memories and emotions.
The same thing happens with pets and their owners. Our animals’ behavior can trigger certain thoughts, emotions and sensations in us without our being aware of it. It’s called transference, and it’s not uncommon among people who work closely with animals. In fact, many veterinarians rely heavily on this phenomenon as part of their diagnostic process when treating patients.
For example, if a cat seems skittish or aggressive toward one person, it could very well be due to the patient’s reaction to his or her previous experiences with cats. Many animals exhibit behavioral patterns that reflect their owners’ personalities, attitudes and psychological states. When these patterns become prominent, we call this “parallel expression.”
In addition to parallel expressions, dogs also use body language and other cues to communicate with their owners. They do this by using such signals as tail wagging, vocalization, facial expressions and gestures. But have you ever noticed that your dog doesn’t use words when he wants to convey a message? Some experts believe that this kind of communication is unique to humans, although others disagree.
There are still plenty of unanswered questions regarding animal intelligence and communication, including whether or not dogs actually have self-awareness (the ability to understand oneself) and self-concept (a sense of identity). However, most scientists agree that dogs are capable of showing signs of emotion, which includes both positive and negative emotions. Just look at your pooch during a happy moment and an unhappy one. Its eyes will reveal what it’s feeling.
Dogs express themselves in various ways, but some forms of expression are more typical than others. Dogs show overt …