Do animals suffer from post-traumatic stress?
The same pattern has been shown in wild mice and in fish living with high levels of predator threat.
These neurochemical signals parallel those seen in rodent models of PTSD that researchers have long used to understand the syndrome in humans.
Despite the mounting evidence that a wide range of animals experience long-term impacts of extreme stress, many psychologists still see PTSD as a uniquely human problem.
“PTSD is defined in terms of human responses,” says David Diamond, a neurobiologist at the University of South Florida.
“There is no biological measure — you can’t get a blood test that says someone has PTSD.
This is a psychological disease, and that’s why I call it a human disorder.
Because a rat can’t tell you how it feels.”
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Some researchers now disagree with this human-centric view of PTSD, however.