I was "stumbling upon" and ran across this article It focuses mostly on kids with autism and their picky eating habits, but I would say that it covers any child with sensory issues. What really stood out to me was the last paragraph: Autistics are not motivated by desires to please other people (dogs). They are almost exclusively self-motivated (cats). A deep grasp of this simple concept will go a long way in understanding autistic behavior and how to modify it enough to be a functional family member. Social graces are externally modifiable through scripts, practice, stories. Eating habits rarely are, as they are tied to deeper issues of sensory perception hardwired into our unusual neural systems. Ding! Like a bell going off in my head. That makes so much sense! Tink is a cat! And Copper, bless her heart, is a doggie.