22

TUESDAY

Controversy has dogged therapist Nicholas Dodman concerning his use of psychoactive drugs to augment behavior-modification therapy in his patients. Humans, of course, gobble up $2 billion worth of Prozac alone each year, but Dodman’s patients are disturbed pets whose desperate owners have turned to the Animal Behavior Department at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine, which Dodman directs. In If Only They Could Speak: Stories About Pets and Their People, Dodman shares stories of his clients’ struggles with jealousy, aggression, and obsessive-compulsive behavior—the prescription for which is often puppy uppers. Dodman argues that medication is a logical step toward avoiding euthanasia (a noble enough sentiment), but not all of the stories have happy endings: Despite meds, one of his canine patients savaged another dog and a parrot. I plan to ask the good doctor why my 10-year-old cat suddenly demands to chew dental floss. Is she obsessing about minty-fresh breath, or is it some deep-seated jealousy of my new Waterpik? Dodman speaks (because Fluffy can’t) at 6 p.m. at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden’s Ring Auditorium, 7th and Independence Avenue SW. $16. (202) 357-3030. (Janet Hopf)