If you’ve ever wondered what your dog thinks of you, a new study may just give the answers. Researchers at Emory University developed a new methodology that lets them scan the brains of alert dogs and figure out what really goes on up there.
They use the same functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) that people sometimes go through, but they take this a step further by using different stimuli (hand signals, food, can openers, etc.) to try to find out what means what on the charts.
The studies are still early on, so nothing groundbreaking has been found yet. After showing the dog different hand signals, which trainers often use to teach dogs tricks and then follow up with a treat, they found “these signals may have a direct line to the dog’s reward system,” as stated by Berns.
I disagree. It’s the very definition of groundbreaking! Dogs respond to treats? Who could POSSIBLY have imagined that finding?!?