Humans Are Quite Good at Reading Their Dogs' Emotions

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Humans are quite good at reading their dogs' emotions.

You probably think you know how your dog feels. Well, scientists believe you do, too.

In a recent study involving Mal, a five-year-old shepherd, a team of researchers concluded that humans are actually quite adept at reading canine emotions.

According to the report published by the journal Behavioural Processes, Dr. Tina Bloom and her group engaged Mal in a variety of scenarios causing the dog to experience fear, surprise, happiness, anger, and disgust.

In each instance photos were taken and later shown to 50 volunteers who were asked to identify what Mal was feeling.

Most easily identified was happiness - 88 percent of study participants recognized the emotion while 70% identified anger. Disgust and surprise proved to be more difficult to detect - less than 20% recognized those correctly.

Science has also shown that one emotion dogs aren’t in touch with at all is guilt.

When reprimanded for knocking over a vase or dragging a leftover drumstick over the carpet, those sad eyes are in response to your tone, not a sign of regret. When scolded, dogs will physically respond to your verbal punishment - even if the cat actually did the deed.

Do you think you can read your dog's emotions?

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