cover of book

Animals at Play: Rules of the Game
by Marc Bekoff
Temple University Press, 2008
Cloth: 978-1-59213-551-6 | Paper: 978-1-59213-552-3 | eISBN: 978-1-59213-553-0
Library of Congress Classification QL763.5.B45 2008
Dewey Decimal Classification 591.563


What can we learn from watching animals play?  Dogs chase each other and wrestle. Cats pounce and bite. These animals may look like they are fighting, but if you pay close attention— as world-renowned biologist Marc Bekoff does—you can see they are playing and learning the rules of their games. In Animals at Play, Bekoff shows us how animals behave when they play, with full-color illustrations showing animals in action and having fun—from squirrels climbing up a tree to polar bears somersaulting in the snow. 

Bekoff emphasizes how animals communicate, cooperate and learn to play fair and what happens when they break the rules. He uses lively illustrations and simple explanations of what it means when a sea lion swims with kelp in its mouth or when two dogs bow to each other. Bekoff also describes what happens when animals become too aggressive and how they apologize, forgive and learn to trust one another.  This entertaining and informative book will delight every child and show readers how animals—and humans—interact when they are having fun.

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