Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Study: You are your dog's favorite scent!

Science is once again confirming what many dog lovers suspected: Our dogs know and love our smell. Research published online in the January 2015 journal Behavioral Processes by the Center for Neuropolicy at Emory University, led by neuroscientist Gregory Berns, used advanced brain-imaging to prove dogs recognize our scent, even when we’re not around. Even more interesting is how the canine brains responded differently to the odor of other dogs and humans versus their own human family. As it turns out, you are the best smell for your dog.

About the study

Berns has been studying the thinking of dogs for several years. He gained fame for being the first person to successfully train dogs to remain still during brain imaging and is developing scientific methods for determining if a dog is a good candidate for military or therapy service. He also penned the fascinating “How Dogs Love Us” using the latest neuroscience to explore how dogs think and love.

His latest investigation involves canine cognition and olfaction. We’ve all experienced the powerful connection between a particular perfume and an emotion. Romance, home, work environments and foods all involve scents and provoke specific feelings and memories. Berns wanted to examine how a dog thinks when smelling, especially because much of their sensory information is derived from odor. He told Jennifer Viegas of Discovery News, “…since dogs are so much more olfactory than humans, their responses would likely be even more powerful than the ones we might have.” Read the entire article

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