Autistic Kids Train Service Dogs While Healing Themselves

A new research project shows how autistic kids improve their communication skills while helping to train young puppies. You can see this in the amazing and heartwarming video in this blog.

Jimmy Stewart and a Dog Named Beau

Film actor Jimmy Stewart had a love for dogs, but one in particular was so special that it could still bring out a deep emotional response in him long after the dog had passed away.

Dogs and Mammoths — a New Glimpse at Early Canine History

Analysis of sites where Stone Age men killed giant mammoths suggests that early dogs were domesticated to aid in the hunt, and may have been so efficient that they helped drive mammoths to extinction.

14 Dog Breeds Blacklisted by Insurance Companies

Insurance companies have drawn up lists of dog breeds that they consider dangerous and whose homes they will not insure. How a dog breed ends up on such a list is often arbitrary.

You Can Have Your Dog and Eat It Too

Since most people feel that the idea of eating dogs is nauseating and unacceptable it is puzzling to find that dog shaped food items are acceptable and extremely popular, especially with children.

Where You Are Facing When You Speak Is Where Your Dog Goes

Dogs can interpret the subtle sound cues which indicate the direction we are looking when we are speaking – even if we are out of sight. Young puppies that have been reared with adequate human contact also have this ability.

The Health and Welfare of Dogs Owned by Elderly Individuals

Some animal shelters refuse to allow elderly individuals to adopt dogs based on concerns about the quality of life for such pets. Recent research suggests that their concerns are unjustified.

The Effect of Training Methods on the Efficiency of Learning

An interesting study based on the training of military service dogs shows that discipline-based methods involving physical force and punishment results in inferior learning and higher rates of distraction.

Aggression between Dogs in the Same Household

Research describes which factors are associated with aggression between dogs living in the same household and what can be done to cure the problem.

The Effect of Training Method on Stress Levels in Dogs

Recent data based on dogs trained in obedience classes by pet dog instructors shows that discipline-based training procedures produce higher stress levels in dogs than positive training using rewards.

How Does a Dog's Attention Vary Over Its Lifetime?

Attention varies with age in both dogs and humans. Recent research shows that just like in humans, attention is best in young adult to early middle-aged dogs. Findings also indicate that adolescent dogs, although less efficient at sustaining attention, have the fastest learning rate.

A Designer Dog-Maker Regrets His Creation

Many designer dogs involve crossbreeding Poodles with other breeds in order to avoid coats that shed and to supposedly create hypoallergenic canines. Wally Conron, the inventor of the Labradoodle, believes that such problems are not solved in such crosses, and many additional problems have resulted from the popularity of these dogs.

Magic Tricks, Consciousness, and Mental Imagery in Dogs

Data suggests that dogs have mental imagery and consciousness when tested for "object permanence". A video where dogs are exposed to sleight-of-hand magic seems to confirm the laboratory results.

Dog Aggression Is Predicted by Training Methods and Breed

Puppy socialization classes reduce the risk of dog aggression towards people, punishment increases it, and some dog breeds are significantly less aggressive when strangers arrive at their home.

How to Touch Your Dog

New research shows that how and where you touch a dog makes a large difference in terms of calming or disturbing him, especially if you are unfamiliar to the dog.

Just How Much Do Dogs Bark When Left Home Alone?

New data provides information about how much an average dog barks in an eight hour day when left alone. The barking rate also seems to depend upon the age and sex of the dog.

How the Dog's Brain Reads Human Emotions

MRI scans show that dogs and people use of the same portion of their brains to extract emotional information from sounds—regardless of whether those sounds were made by dogs or the human voice.

The Best Dog Fiction Writer Ever?

A collection of clever and loyal Collies is described in nearly 50 books written by Albert Payson Terhune.

What Assistance Dogs Can and Can't Do

An assistance dog does not replace a handicapped person's missing abilities (such as vision), but rather performs narrowly defined tasks that his human companion has difficulty with.

The Memory Abilities of Dogs

A trained dog can use its own the episodic memory to answer the questions "Where?," "What?," and "When?" to assist a person whose short-term memory is no longer functioning as well as it should.

Is a Dog's Head Shape Related to His Intelligence?

Research shows that classifying dog breeds on the basis of whether their head shapes are relatively long, or short and flat, or something in between, also gives us an estimate of a dog's intelligence or trainability.

Assistance Dogs for Alzheimer's and Dementia Patients

Several training facilities are now training dogs to assist individuals suffering from Alzheimer's or dementia. They compensate for failing memory and disorientation such as when the person can no longer find their way home. They also help structure the patient's life and provide social support.

Can People Recognize Their Own Dogs By Scent Alone?

Although human beings have nowhere near the odor recognition ability of dogs, research shows that we have unconsciously learned to identify the scent of our own pet.

Even Young Children and Toddlers Prefer Dogs Over Cats

New research shows that very young children prefer dogs over cats, teddy bears and human babies. It seems as if time and experience with cats is needed to develop a fondness for them, and this is more likely if the particular cat has baby-like facial features. However, the affection for dogs is virtually innate.

Do Dogs Have a Special Magnetic Sense?

New data suggests that dogs may have a magnetic sense that responds to the direction of the Earth's magnetic fields. This sensitivity could serve as a "compass" that could help explain some of the remarkable homing behavior, where lost dogs travel hundreds of miles to return to their home.

The Dogs of Christmas

Santa Claus, shepherds, sleepy children, and former president Lyndon Baines Johnson all seem to tie dogs into the celebration of Christmas.

Are Some Dogs Getting Addicted to Hallucinogens?

Certain species of toads secrete toxins as a defense mechanism. In the mix of these toxins are some hallucinogenic substances, and some dogs seem to be seeking out these particular types of toads so that they can lick them, in order to get a psychedelic high. As a result some dogs are actually becoming addicted.

Why Do Some Dogs Tilt Their Heads When We Talk to Them?

Recent data suggests that the reason that dogs tilt their heads when we speak to them is because their muzzle blocks their view of our mouth area. Dogs with less pronounced muzzles tilt their heads when spoken to significantly less.

Do Dogs Really Know When We Are Talking to Them?

Recent research shows that dogs will follow your gaze and look at what you are looking at if you first engage their attention with direct eye contact and the high pitched speech tones that we tend to use for young children.

Dogs Read Your Emotions and Attach Them to What You Look At

By looking at what their owners are paying attention to and reading their emotional states, dogs learn which things they should approach and avoid. Dogs seem to pay more attention to positive emotions. Dogs also seem to pay little attention to the emotions of strangers.

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