About Animal Behavior:
Behavior is the way an animal acts. An animal's action or response to a stimulus is a behavior. Walking, swimming, flying, eating, blinking, and breathing are all examples of behavior. Animals behave in specific ways for four primary reasons. Animal behaviors are primarily strategies for survival. Animal training is the act of teaching animals specific responses to specific conditions or stimuli.
What is Animal Behavior?
Behavior is the way an animal acts. An animal's action or response to a stimulus is a behavior. Walking, swimming, flying, eating, blinking, and breathing are all examples of behavior. Animals behave in specific ways for four primary reasons:
- to find food and water
- to avoid predators
- to reproduce
- to interact in social groups
Behaviors help animals survive.
Animal behaviors are primarily strategies for survival. Some behaviors, such as eating, or escaping predators, are obvious survival strategies. But other behaviors, which also are essential for survival, may not be as easily understood. For example, why does a flamingo stand on one leg? By tucking the other leg close to its body, the bird conserves heat that would otherwise escape.
An animal survives by responding and adapting to a changing environment. In some cases, the animal learns which responses get desired results and changes its behavior accordingly.
What is Learned Behavior?
Animals learn some behavior through experience. In fact, scientists define learning as a change in behavior resulting from experience. For the most part, learning occurs gradually and in steps.
An animal's genetic makeup and body structure determine what behaviors are possible for it to learn. An animal can only learn to do what it can physically do.
What is Ethology?
Ethology is the scientific study of an animal's behavior in the wild. It is easier to observe and record behavior than it is to interpret it. When studying animal behavior, observers must not anthropomorphize (attribute human characteristics or motivations to animals).
Ethology is a rapidly growing field. Since the dawn of the 21st century, researchers have re-examined and reached new conclusions about animal communication, emotions, culture, learning, and sexuality that the scientific community long thought understood. New fields, such as neuroethology, have developed.
Understanding ethology or animal behavior can be crucial in animal training. Considering the natural behaviors of different species or breeds enables trainers to select the individuals best suited to perform the required task. It also allows trainers to encourage the performance of naturally occurring behaviors and discontinue undesirable behaviors.
What is Animal Training?
Animal training is the act of teaching animals specific responses to specific conditions or stimuli. Training may be for purposes such as companionship, detection, protection, and entertainment. The type of training an animal receives vary depending on the training method used and the ideal for training the animal.
Are Pets Intelligent?
Sometimes people think that an animal is intelligent if it can be trained to do certain behaviors. But accurately rating the intelligence of animals is difficult. Trying to measure animal intelligence using human guidelines would be inappropriate. In fact, a reliable and consistent intelligence test for humans has yet to be developed.