Babies speak “dog”!

That was too cute a title to give up. At a surprisingly young age, human babies are aware of their surroundings and the emotions around them. They can even tell when a dog is being friendly or aggressive. That’s a good trait considering that we’ve lived with dogs for at least ten thousand years.

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Babies speak “dog”!

That was too cute a title to give up. At a surprisingly young age, human babies are aware of their surroundings and the emotions around them. They can even tell when a dog is being friendly or aggressive. That’s a good trait considering that we’ve lived with dogs for at least ten thousand years.

Coyote attack on teen

Taylor MitchellI mention her age only because teenagers tend to be slightly smaller than their full growth, so a teenage woman might be a smaller, less intimidating human to a coyote.

A young woman was killed by two coyotes when she went for a hike in Nova Scotia, on a popular marked trail in Cape Breton Highlands National Park. It’s a place I’ve often wanted to hike. When I do, I’ll take a stout stick or club.

A 19-year-old folk singer from Toronto has died after being attacked by two coyotes in Cape Breton Highlands National Park.

Taylor Josephine Stephanie Luciow, who went by the stage name Taylor Mitchell, died overnight at the Queen Elizabeth II  Health Sciences Centre in Halifax. She had been on tour in the Maritimes.

Mitchell was hiking on the Skyline Trail when she was attacked Tuesday afternoon. She was taken to the hospital in Cheticamp, then airlifted to Halifax in critical condition.

Park officials said Mitchell was walking the trail alone. They said other hikers managed to scare off the coyotes and call 911.

Dog bites: it’s not the breed, it’s the human

a cross of Great Dane, Mastiff, and Cane Corso breeds

a cross of Great Dane, Mastiff, and Cane Corso breeds

Even if it is the breed, it’s still the human. Responsible owners have to train their dogs. Read ERV’s take on it: Dog aggression.

Posted in Americas, pets, safety. Tags: . 5 Comments »

Iditarod

I’m watching a show on Discovery Channel about the running of the Iditarod sled-dog race. It’s one of the longest races, about 1800 km. It recalls a famous delivery of diptheria vaccine to Nome, Alaska by dog-sled after the train was stopped by a storm. The dogs delivered the anti-diptheria serum and that stopped the epidemic.

The dogs run about 100 miles a day. like a cyclist, the dogs simply provide a little push of about 5 pounds’ force at each stride. The world’s record for completing the race is almost 9 days. I think it’s 8 days, 22 hours, 46 minutes.

Wolves are, too, smarter than dogs

The Economist cites an experiment that shows that a chance to learn human behavior, not intelligence, is the key to understanding human gestures. An experiment that concluded dogs understood gesture better because of selection to understand humans was flawed. It used wolves that had not been raised with humans. A second experiment found that wolves brought up by humans understand gesture better than do dogs.

Human-like behaviors in dogs

It’s becoming clear that dogs have been selected and bred for their ability to attend to and interpret humans:

“A review of domestic dogs’ (Canis familiaris) human-like behaviors: or why behavior analysts should stop worrying and love their dogs.”
—by Monique A. R. Udell and C. D. L. Wynne

Abstract

Dogs likely were the first animals to be domesticated and as such have shared a common environment with humans for over ten thousand years. Only recently, however, has this species’ behavior been subject to scientific scrutiny. Most of this work has been inspired by research in human cognitive psychology and suggests that in many ways dogs are more human-like than any other species, including nonhuman primates. Behavior analysts should add their expertise to the study of dog behavior, both to add objective behavioral analyses of experimental data and to effectively integrate this new knowledge into applied work with dogs.
Key words: gestures, object permanence, theory of mind, social cognition, dogs

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