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Bush's Service Dog: Loyal? Thinking Critically

Scroll down the center of this box to see another point of view on the image of president Bush's dog:



  • Do any students have a dog (or have in the past) who they feel certain has displayed emotions like Sully?
  • What emotions are students confident that dogs can feel (Sadness? Guilt?) and which emotions do they think are probably too complex for dogs?

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Animals do LOVE unconditionally and i DO believe they have feelings for their owners.  They sure make me feel LOVED and Special..:)!

Valued Contributor

I agree, my cat grieved when my other cat died. It was so sad, as they were best buddies.

Valued Contributor

I am over Paideia instruction now at Rowan-Cabarrus (socratic seminar). This would work perfectly in a seminar where we were focused on visual arguments. 

Keep in mind that the point of the exercise is not to prove that animals do or not have feelings - the point is for students to understand that it's hard to study animal emotions because sometimes we are projecting our own feelings into them. Sometimes there are alternative, less complicated explanations for what we see.


An additional thing to mention about the Sully image: one has to wonder how this picture was taken - what was Sully doing before the photo? Did Sully decide to sit next to the casket or did someone in the room "think it would be cute" to get a picture of Sully next to the casket and so called Sully into the room and told here to lie down in that spot?

@Jenny_Billings I'm curious about Paideia, I found this link about Paideia, but can you briefly explain?

Valued Contributor

That is exactly it. I went to the certification conference back in November. Basically, trying to make students better critical thinkers, citizens, and critical readers. Increasing their ability to think about, talk about it, and coexist within their community. We will be selecting the 'right texts' for all subject areas and then teaching instructors have to become facilitators by asking the right opening, core, and closing questions. Allows and encourages all students to participate and ultimately allows them to better understand the course, the content, and what they will write on/be tested on. Does that help?

Really interesting Jenny.  Found this video on it:



Valued Contributor

Yes, I'd be happy to talk more about it in the future if something that interests folks. We have found some of the 'right texts' in Cengage textbooks.