No matter how cushy their lives, dogs live on our terms. They compromise their freedom and instinctual pleasure, as well as their innate strategies for coping with stress and anxiety, in exchange for the love, comfort, and care they get from us. But it is possible to let dogs be dogs without wreaking havoc on our lives, as biologist Marc Bekoff
and bioethicist Jessica Pierce
show in her new book Unleashing Your Dog: A Field Guide to Giving Your Canine Companion the Best Life Possible
(New World Library, 2019). They begin by illuminating the true nature of dogs and helping us “walk in their paws.” They reveal what smell, taste, touch, sight, and hearing mean to dogs and then guide readers through everyday ways of enhancing dogs’ freedom in safe, mutually happy ways. The rewards, they show, are great for dog and human alike.
Dr. Jessica Pierce is an author of ten books, hundreds of articles, and faculty affiliate at the University of Colorado’s Center for Bioethics and Humanities.
Greg Soden is the host of “Classical Ideas,” a podcast about religion and religious ideas. You can find it on iTunes here.