As a proud dog owner, I know that I couldn’t imagine life without my furry companion.
My dogs isn’t just great for letting me know when the mailman has driven by the house (by barking like a maniac), letting me know when there is a squirrel encroaching on my backyard (by barking like a maniac), or when the doorbell rings in a tv show (by barking like a maniac). According to science, our dogs actually enhance several aspects of our lives.
1. They Can Make Us Healthier
Maintaining good health doesn’t involve just one aspect of our lives. True health is measured in mind, body, and soul. Dog owners have been shown to be healthier in general for many different reasons. Dogs have been shown to not only reduce stress and anxiety, they have even been shown to lower blood pressure. Dog owners are typically more active as well, which is an essential element of good health.
2. They Can Detect Cancer
There have been many studies involving using bomb-sniffing dogs to detect different cancers in patients, simply by smelling their urine. The research has been so complete, that in Brittain the NHS is developing a program to start using these cancer-detecting dogs in more widespread cancer screenings. Iqbal Anjum, a urologist, says, “Over the years there have been many anecdotal reports suggesting that dogs may be able to detect cancer based on the tumor’s odor. It is assumed that volatile molecules associated with the tumor would be released into the person’s urine, making samples easy to collect and test.” Anjum went on to say that this is ““an extremely exciting prospect”.
3. They Can Detect Jerks
In a recent study from Kyoto University, researchers think they have found that dogs can detect jerks. The study involved 18 dogs and their owners broken up into 3 groups. Each group was given a box, and the owner would ask a stranger to help them open it. In one group the strangers would help, in one group they would refuse, and in the third group the stranger would remain neutral.
The dogs would observe the interactions, and the results showed that the dogs were much less likely to receive a treat from the strangers that refused to help. The researchers think that dogs can pick up on emotional interactions between humans.
Ever Wondered What Your Dog is Thinking? Scientists now Know.
According to Kazuo Fujita, a professor of comparative cognition at Kyoto University, “We discovered for the first time that dogs make social and emotional evaluations of people regardless of their direct interest. This ability is one of key factors in building a highly collaborative society, and this study shows that dogs share that ability with humans.” So, basically your dog is able to detect assholes (not just the ones on other dogs).