It is patronising and sentimental

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Having previously claimed that “animals offer unconditional love”, Susan I Richardson (Letters May 20) now tries to defend this assertion by pointing to the example of dogs who have remained with their masters/mistresses after the latter have collapsed.

Apart from pointing out that this example involves only one species, and not animals in general, any sensible person might well ask what else the dog could be expected to do in such circumstances.

She goes on to claim that I “obviously” have little knowledge of animals. Well, I have enough to recognise that animals often behave in ways that would be considered selfless, brave or loyal if they were human.

They are not human, however, and to ascribe human qualities to them is patronising and sentimental.

Paul Kenny