… Read the rest
With half as many neurons in their cerebral cortex as cats—and half the attitude, some would say—dogs are often taken to be the less intelligent domestic partner. While dogs drink out of the toilet, slavishly follow their master and need a chaperone to relieve themselves, cats hunt self-sufficiently and survey their empire with a regal gaze.
But cats beware. Research in recent years has finally revealed the genius of dogs.
Like other language-trained animals—dolphins, parrots, bonobos—dogs can learn to respond to hundreds of spoken signals associated with different objects. What sets dogs apart is how they learn these words.
If you show a child a red block and a green block, and then ask for the chromium block, not the red block, most children will give you the green block, despite not knowing that the word “chromium” can refer to a shade of green.
Tag Archives | Dogs
We were not the first culture to deify our pets. Ahram Online reports:
During routine excavations at the dog catacomb in Saqqara necropolis, an excavation team led by Salima Ikram, professor of Egyptology at The American University in Cairo (AUC), and an international team of researchers led by Paul Nicholson of Cardiff University have uncovered almost 8 million animal mummies at the burial site.
“We are recording the animal bones and the mummification techniques used to prepare the animals,” Ikram said. “We are trying to understand how this fits religiously with the cult of Anubis, to whom the catacomb is dedicated,” she added.
Saqqara dog catacomb was first discovered in 1897 when well-known French Egyptologist Jacques De Morgan published his Carte of Memphite necropolis, with his map showing that there are two dog catacombs in the area.
“There was a programme on our TV sets called ‘Dogs with jobs’, right? Dogs with jobs? And they used to put it on at 11.30 in the morning, right? I was unemployed at that time and I resented a programme called ‘Dogs with jobs’ being put on telly when they knew unemployed people would be watching. […] Oh f—ing hell, even the dogs have got jobs!!”
- Russell Brand
There’s a doggy which has been trained to sniff out patients who have the ‘superbug’ C.difficile. It can clear an entire hospital ward in minutes with a recorded 80 per cent success rate, The Telegraph reports:
… Read the rest
The dog, a beagle named Cliff, can sniff out the potentially deadly infection on samples taken from patients and even just from walking around the ward sniffing the air, according to a report published online in the British Medical Journal.
Dogs have been trained to sniff out a variety of diseases, warn epileptics of impending fits and can be trained to assist disabled people, but this is thought to be the first time one has been found to able to detect Clostridium difficile.
Scientists at Cambridge University have discovered an innovative new treatment that could lead to reversal of human spinal cord injuries. For now, paralyzed pooches are the ones reaping the rewards:
… Read the rest
The pets had all suffered spinal injuries which prevented them from using their back legs.
The Cambridge University team is cautiously optimistic the technique could eventually have a role in the treatment of human patients.
The study is the first to test the transplant in “real-life” injuries rather than laboratory animals.
Olfactory ensheathing cells
The only part of the body where nerve fibres continue to grow in adults is the olfactory system.
Found in the at the back of the nasal cavity, olfactory ensheathing cells (OEC) surround the receptor neurons that both enable us to smell and convey these signals to the brain.
The nerve cells need constant replacement which is promoted by the OECs.
They survived running toward death and danger, but some locally trained military dogs of war are not making it home. Instead, they're being euthanized. Channel 2's Scott MacFarlane learned of an obscure U.S. law that is making it tough for military dogs to be adopted after their service is over. Army Sgt. David Varkett survived his tour of duty in Afghanistan, because his unit included Nooshka, a 5- year-old dog that sniffed out an improvised bomb before it exploded. "This dog has saved my life and many others," Varkett said. "She became a little local hero, finding those IEDs."
Fido's expressive face, including those longing puppy-dog eyes, may lead owners to wonder what exactly is going on in that doggy's head. Scientists decided to find out, using brain scans to explore the minds of our canine friends. The researchers, who detailed their findings May 2 in the open-access journal PLoS ONE, were interested in understanding the human-dog relationship from the four-legged perspective. "When we saw those first [brain] images, it was unlike anything else,"...
Could this be the incident that proves Romney to be the cruel, heartless man many of us suspect? From the New York Daily News:
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Seamus Romney absolutely “loved” his wild rooftop rides, at least according to his mom.
Ann Romney opened up about their family dog, who was strapped to the roof of their car in a crate during vacations in the 1980s — insisting the pet pooch looked forward to the trips despite once getting sick.
Her husband, likely Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, has come under fire from animal activist groups after he revealed how the long-deceased Irish setter traveled with the family.
The left has used the trips to paint the White House hopeful as uncaring.
“The dog loved it,” Ann Romney told ABC’s Diane Sawyer on Monday. “He would see that crate and, you know, he would, like, go crazy because he was going with us on vacation.
“What bullsh*t, Liam. If your lot really thought they [i.e., the police] were part of the “99%”, you’d be doing something to protect them, too,” Sorcha Nic Congail
Well, it has to be admitted that my cousin Sorcha has a point. A powerful point. Not the sort of thing that I would have been inclined to explore on my own unbidden. But that’s what friends are for, I guess. To prod you along some paths you would never have even considered, left to your own devices.
Here’s where the hole ugly mess began:
I received a copy of this photo last weekend from an FB friend and as a dog lover was immediately horrified. As a kid I grew up with dogs — lots of dogs. Probably the best, most loving and loyal animals on earth. I’d long ago come to see dogs as man’s natural companion and most trusted comrade.… Read the rest
You know your movement is rockin’ the interwebs when you have a Tumblr blog for animals supporting it.
See more conscientious animal objecters to the current state of capitalism at: Awwccupy Wall Street …
Should dogs be allowed in courtrooms to comfort the victims? The New York Times reports:
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Rosie, the first judicially approved courtroom dog in New York, was in the witness box here nuzzling a 15-year-old girl who was testifying that her father had raped and impregnated her. Rosie sat by the teenager’s feet. At particularly bad moments, she leaned in.
When the trial ended in June with the father’s conviction, the teenager “was most grateful to Rosie above all,” said David A. Crenshaw, a psychologist who works with the teenager.
“She just kept hugging Rosie,” he continued.
Now an appeal planned by the defense lawyers is placing Rosie at the heart of a legal debate that will test whether there will be more Rosies in courtrooms in New York and, possibly, other states.
Rosie is a golden retriever therapy dog who specializes in comforting people when they are under stress. Both prosecutors and defense lawyers have described her as adorable, though she has been known to slobber.