Puppies and Us: A Matter of Genetics

Perception specialists have long known that dogs have something unique about the animal world: they can understand part of our body language. For example, they know that a finger pointing in one direction means looking in that direction; And the guard looks carefully at us while we are talking to them. Does it learn at a young age or do puppies have this ability from birth?

According to an American research team, it is therefore partly genetic. Their StudiesPosted on June 3 in Review of Current Biology, Consists of Interacting with at least 375 8-week Golden Retrievers and Labradors. And these interactions lead them to conclude that many of these pups actually develop these skills too quickly to be a mere result of learning – for example, bonus attraction. With this ability to follow the direction the finger is pointing, the dog is, at least partially, already born.

On the other hand, at eight weeks of age the puppy has not yet learned to “ask for help”: puppies facing the difficult task of opening a box of food can look at a person. , but only for a second. And not with the insistence of an old dog trying to attract the attention of its favorite human …

Photo: Jonathan Kreese / Flickr

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