Are Dogs Similar to Infants?Published February 1, 2012
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The study was done by researchers presenting two videos to the dogs they were testing. Featured in the first one, a woman looking straight at the camera says, "Hi, dog", then turns her head to look at a container. The dog responds by following her eyes. In the second video, she does not directly gaze at the camera. Instead, she looks down, while repeating the same phrase, when she is not gazing at the camera, this time, the dog does not follow her eyes.
One of the study’s authors, Adam Miklosi, a behavioral biologist at the Budapest Eotvos Lorand University, interpreted the dogs’ behavior as evidence that the dogs were able to understand the slight differences in the woman's behavior presented in the two situations, proving dogs are capable of reading human behavior and are aware when they are addressed. It is presumed that the many years of domestication have given dogs this ability.
Additional studies show the similarity between canine behavior and infant behavior in their response to adult’s intent.
Commenting further, Dr. Miklosi said, "Dogs are functionally similar to a 6-month-old, to a 1-year old. Though how the dog mind is dealing with the problem, we don't really know, and it's probably different from an infant's."
The results of the study may point in the direction that explains why the majority of Americans think of their dogs as family members. Since dog people often address their canines using baby –talk, perhaps on some level, these owners were already aware of what the Hungarian researchers discovered.
Without the necessity for any further research, however, the one thing to which we can attest is simply how crazy the majority of Americans are about their dogs.
A recent survey conducted by IrishDogs i.e. showed that over 50 percent of dog owners are happy to refer to themselves as “mommy” or “daddy” in reference to their dog, with a third of dog owners referring to their pets as their “son “or “daughter”. On average, dog owners display seven photos of their pet(s) in their home or office, with almost 25 percent keeping a specific photo album devoted exclusively to their dog.
In light of these overwhelming statistics, coupled with the scientific proof that dogs really do comprehend human language, this writer feels it’s time for non-dog people to stop pooh-poohing what dog lovers know to be true.
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