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Animals: Just Like Us (Only Nicer)

Written by PETA | September 23, 2011

As anyone who has ever forgotten to spell out “w-a-l-k” can attest, dogs can understand our language. One recent study showed that dogs can learn up to 165 words and gestures and that they can count. And dogs aren’t the only animals you can depend on in an emergency either—a rabbit recently saved her human family from a house fire.

 malfet_ | cc by 2.0

Could birds call each other “humanbrain” as an insult? Like humans, crows and ravens are very social and have large brains for their body size. They also rival humans and monkeys in their ability to delay self-gratification for a greater reward. They are articulate, too, as evidenced by escaped former companion birds who are now teaching their flocks to understand English. If a family planning to welcome a new baby is having trouble picking a name, perhaps they should consult with parrots, who name their offspring.

Dolphins talk to each other in a way similar to humans, too, by adjusting their muscular tension and air flow. Words likely not in their vocabulary? “Imprison,” “abuse,” and “exploit” …. But if they are familiar with those terms, it could explain why scientists in Australia are just now discovering a new species of dolphin—maybe they were hiding!

Written by Michelle Sherrow

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  • Billy Williams says:

    Animals are so much smarter then people think they are,A LOT smarter then us,And Nicer.

  • Billy Williams says:

    I love birds! And crows are very vocal & social,When one would come are our feeder it would call out & within three minutes,a bunch more would show up.They also would remember me when i would come out to fill the feeders,They would get comely fly a few feet away and wait(While they’ll fly right out of the whole yard if other people are out)And when i go in,They go right down & eat.They don’t pick on each other & will leave other birds alone,-They Rock!

  • Rita says:

    Growing up, my mom had a bird feeder hanging on a tree outside a window. I sat in front of the window almost every day, watching the little sparrows try to get on the feeder. At first they couldn’t figure it out. They would flap and then fall back to the ground. They would try to get at it from above. This went on for about a week. Finally one day, one sparrow made it up on there, and then the next day a few of them made it up. By the next week every sparrow could land on that feeder. I’m sure that the one sparrow who landed told the other sparrows how to do it. More amusing were the grackles who were too big to land on it – or so I thought. One day one managed to land and stay on it by shoving it’s butt up against the back of the feeder and then craning its neck to eat. Of course I saw the same behavior repeated by many different ones after that (though they weren’t as frequent as the sparrows.)

  • Saucy says:

    They play games too. I live in a third floor walk-up in Manhattan. The back of the apartment faces the backs of other buildings from neighboring blocks. Pigeons gather there on the fire escapes. They brush their feathers, work on their wings and I guess just take a break from the noisy streets and crowded park. One morning I’m gazing out back, delighted by their presence, when a bird jumped off the rail. I thought OMG, am I witnessing the first ever pigeon suicide? The bird just jumped, freefalling, wings to the side….. straight down. Then suddenly, flap, flap, flap, flap….wings in full fly. Then, the next bird on the rail jumped. Same thing. No wings. No flapping. Straight down. About a story and a half. Then flap, flap, flap flap. Haha. Then, the next bird and the next bird. About seven or eight birds followed suit. One by one jumping off the rail. It surely was some kind of game they were playing. How far will you fall until you begin to flap.. I like to think they were doing it for me, putting on a show, teaching me something I didn’t know about pigeons. sensing my compassionate ethos.

  • James Taylor says:

    I have and do believe all animals are far more intelligent than they are given credit for. The brain be it human or other holds secrets we do not know..

  • A Human, a real one says:

    Oh no! They are discovering a new dolphin? Not again… Don’t you already hawe millions of animals in laboratories, meat factories and cliniks to torture to death? Isn’t it inof? Well… yeah, it’s maybe more fun to test lipstick on dolphins than on mies, and much cooler… but anyway, too much is too much… Let them live, do not discover them, leave them by themselves, they’ll be safer this way.

  • Heide says:

    I was givin a beautiful white, deaf cat. Within a week or so we had our own sign language and/or body language. It was a wonderful experience we shared learning together and it amazes the people that visit us and witness it. It has changed several peoples opinions of cats….which is a good thing

  • Gretmol1 says:

    I’ve heard that the Octopus “decorates” it’s cave with little sea treasures it finds.

  • Carole Lalonde says:

    I have been saying for years that we should not expect animals to be like us, that they have their own intelligence and since we are not proving that they are acting like it only proves their superiority since we are not able to copy them. Animal intelligence does exist when will we understand that. Carole Lalonde Quebec, Canada