|Veterinarian Vint Virga says that animals in zoos, like this lion, need to have a bit of control over their environment.|
In a very interesting piece, National Public Radio presents Vint Virga, who proposes we ought to shift back more control to animals in their environments. Highlights of the program:
"We need to step out of what we consider are the appropriate behaviors as humans and try to put ourselves in an animal's footsteps. ... Affection is shown by being cuddly and lovey for a lot of us — not necessarily all of us — [so we often think] that our cats would want to be cuddled and loved."
"Instead, a lot of cats, if you actually watch their natural behavior when they're in groups, the most affectionate cats might be sitting near each other. They might sit with their tails intertwined, rear to rear, but they're not usually face to face, nose to nose, or snuggled up next to each other. .."
"That says that cats feel comfort and they express their emotions in ways differently than we do. If that's true, then what behooves us [as] ... their caretakers and human family members, is to learn about what it is that cats think and feel rather than [imposing] what we think and feel upon them."