What do researchers know anyway?
Dogs are easily God’s gift to man. There’s a reason they are known as “man’s best friend.” They are loyal, loving, entertaining… they’re family! And we would die for family so this study better not come for us.
Your dog is not special.
That’s what a new study in the journal Learning & Behavior says. Researchers studied the cognition (or as I like to call it, the “dog-nition”) of canines and compared it to other groups of animals that dogs like carnivores, social hunters and domestic animals. Basically they looked as the brain capacity of a dog compared to the rest of the animal kingdom.
And there’s really nothing to “good boy” over.
Dogs did perform above average in social cognition, which comes from human interaction. However, in the other categories like sensory cognition, physical cognition, spatial cognition and self-awareness, they didn’t perform much better than their peers. The definitive conclusion in the study is “when a broad-enough set of comparison species in considered, there is no current case for canine exceptionalism.”
It does sound like there are some very specific exceptions to the rule… which you can totally interpret as “your dog is special because they are yours.”