Comparative Psychopathology: Connecting Comparative and Clinical Psychology
The animal welfare movement was empowered by decades of animal studies focused on the ontogeny of psychopathology in non-human primates and other species. When H. F. Harlow induced aberrant behaviors in rhesus macaques, collaborators began the search for effective behavioral and psychopharmacological interventions. Years later, working with human subjects in his clinical practice, Harlow’s first graduate student, A. H. Maslow developed a “Hierarchy of Needs” and the hypothetical construct of self-actualization. Following Harlow’s practice of using human models to design monkey studies, present day psychologists apply what is known about maladaptive behavior and the factors that facilitate positive human behavior to improve the quality of life for non-human taxa living in captive settings. We know how to prevent psychopathology in monkeys and apes, but nonhuman primates are still confined in restricted, substandard facilities that introduce trauma and suffering. Felids, ursids, elephants and cetaceans have also suffered this fate. As a result, there is good reason for clinical and comparative psychologists to collaborate to ameliorate aberrant behaviors while creating conditions that enable all captive animals to thrive.
International Journal of Comparative Psychology
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Maple, & Segura, V. (2017). Comparative Psychopathology: Connecting Comparative and Clinical Psychology. International Journal of Comparative Psychology, 30. https://doi.org/10.46867/ijcp.2017.30.02.04