Wednesday, June 28, 2006

My dog's tears

People usually refer to an animal's expression or behaviour as "sad" or "happy".

A friend has just told me how he had felt pity for his dog's tears yesterday.

"Tears?" - I asked - "Come on, dogs don't cry!"

But then I returned to that thrilling question: do animals have feelings?

We usually refer to them as irrational beings - as opposed to Humans. But is Reason a necessary condition to feelings?

Is it possible that animals feel something, other than hunger or cold?

One animal-loving friend once told me that animals love whoever feeds them. Yann Martel (in "The Life of Pi") argues that an animal's life is fulfilled by only two necessities: having something to eat and having their own territory.

That being true, what space is left for a dog to love his owner?

Or, for example, I question myself, what does a dog feel when he wants to play with us and we refuse? Is it sadness?

And if we play with him? Does he want to play because he is seeking pleasure?

If animals are pleasure-seekers, then they should also be able to feel and, thus, Martel and my friend are wrong.

If they are not pleasure-seekers, what are they after, when they want to "play" with us?

I could be here for hours.

I think that "what do animals feel?" is one question that Mankind and Science will never understand.

2 comments:

r said...

Qualquer pessoa que tenha um animal consegue perceber que sim, ele sente.
Se visse o olhare de abandono da minha cocas quando se sente rejeitada; ou de felicidade quando corre livremente; de regozijo quando após minutos de espera lá lhe damos um pedacinho de pão, ou fruta, ou carne, ou o que quer que estejamos a comer; ou quando 'amua' porque não lhe damos uma festinha ou porque esteve no canil uma semana; quando pede qualquer coisa: ir à rua, comer, brincar(se bem que são mais necessidades que outra coisa); mas especialmente o olhar com que nos contempla quando a estamos a importunar nos seus momentos de descanso, do tipo 'ai a minha pacência, mas também se não fosse ela: que seria de mim?'- até diria que sorri.
Quem tem um cão como a cocas sabe

El-Gee said...

obrigado! eu tambem estou mais convencido de que sim! bj*