Journal of the Society for Psychical Research 63, October 1999
by Rupert Sheldrake


In August 1998 the British Journal of Psychology published a paper entitled 'Can animals detect when their owners are returning home? An experimental test of the "psychic pet" phenomenon' by Richard Wiseman, Matthew Smith and Julie Milton. This paper was widely publicized thanks to a media release issued by the Press Office of the British Psychological Society. The sceptical tone of this announcement, entitled 'Mystic dog fails to give scientists a lead', was reflected in the ensuing newspaper reports: 'Pets have no sixth sense, say scientists' (The Independent, Aug 21); '"Psychic" dog is no more than a chancer' (The Times , Aug 21); 'Psychic pets are exposed as a myth' (The Daily Telegraph, Aug 22). The wire services reported the story world-wide.

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