Dogs: Man’s Ethical Ancestors?
Socrates and Aristotle, make way for Fido and Rover. According to a new theory of ethics, the social order of dogs, wolves, and coyotes may be the best source of insight into the roots of human morality.
After years of closely analyzing the ways in which dogs play with each other, Marc Bekoff and Jessica Pierce—whose new book Wild Justice is slated for a May release—concluded that dogs follow a rigid code that prevents their seemingly violent play from becoming a fight. By bowing to each other, showing signs of apology, and adapting their strength to the abilities of their playmates, dogs safely control themselves when they play, promoting fairness and preventing injuries. Bekoff and Pierce claim that the “moral intelligence” of dogs, “probably closely resembles that of our early human ancestors. And it may have been just this sense of right and wrong that allowed human societies to flourish and spread across the world.”
Written by Logan Scherer