I'm wondering if there is a word that, essentially, means the opposite of anthropomorphize- roughly, assigning animal-like attributes or mentality to a human. Beastialize doesn't seem to fit the bill as it: a) doesn't seem to be a'real word' and b) is heavily associated with bestialism.
I came across a good example of this in Bill Sapphire's 1993 ON LANGUAGE: Sic 'Em in which they were discussing the connotations of the phrase after Bob Dole used it in reference to other politicians:
When American Speech magazine queried readers about sic 'em in 1961, one observed that his mother heard it from Arkansas friends who owned hound dogs. Another reader, the great San Francisco dialexicographer Peter Tamony, replied: "The remark describes an unresponsive, indolent, shiftless person. He is like a dog that shows no courageous and instant reaction to the command 'sic 'em.' " Mr. Tamony gave an etymological insight by adding that sic 'em is "merely a pronunciation modification of seek 'em or seek 'im."