Made for Each Other: The Biology of the Human-Animal Bond, by Meg Daley Olmert, 2009
Biggest note for me: How oxytocin makes dogs and people love each other
Have you read our article on the history of service dogs? The following helps explain a lot about the special bond between dogs and people.
Four of the scientific terms that influence how humans are affected by animals
- Working with animals we love produces oxytocin
- Watching animals triggers motor neurons
- Exposure effect makes us like them even more
- "Hunter's Trance"
Some of the functioning of oxytocin in the context of humans and animals:
- Oxytocin produces GABA. GABA lowers the function of the amygdala (fear center)
- Note that lowered functioning of the amygdala lowers one's blood pressure and heart rate (via less adrenaline and cortisol)
- Oxytocin also increases dopamine production