Animals at Play
New and exciting studies of the brain evolution, and ethnology, or animal behavior, suggest that play may be as important to life – for us and for other animals – as sleeping and dreaming. Play is key to an individual’s development and to its social relationships and status. Playful individuals often become adept at hunting and at winning mates. Among mammals and birds, abundant play and complex play are associated with more developed brains.
Play also has benefits. It clearly aids in the healthy development of young animals, both physically and mentally, and it’s probably a boon to animals that continue to play into adulthood.
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