Loyalty and affection are two primary and commonly observed traits of a dog, and probably the reason they’ve made a significant place in our hearts as well as our homes. However, the extraordinary abilities of interaction and expression in a dog are what distinguishes them from other pets. They’re not only capable of differentiating happy and sad faces but are also able to tell apart good-intended and bad-intended individuals using their senses.
Woodrow Wilson once said, “If a dog will not come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” In other words, dogs may or may not choose to interact with specific people.
How can that be and why?
Perhaps, this questionable behavior of dogs is what motivated Dr. Akiko Takaoka and her colleagues of the Psychology Department at Kyoto, Japan, to conduct research to detect the ability of dogs to trust lying individuals. To ensure the authenticity of their results, they divided their samples into three parts.
According to the renowned scientists, the analysis exclusively focused on a substantial study of the conduct of dogs. The results stated that generally, dogs prefer constancy not only in their immediate surroundings but in the vast world as well.
An experiment they conducted was that an owner signaled his dog towards a food bowl filled with his favorite meal. However, when the owner called the dog for the second time, the dog found its bowl to be completely empty. At this sight, the dog gave a disappointed look to his owner.
When this empty-bowl experiment was conducted twice more with the same dog, it became dubious and frustrated. A few other dogs, that were under observation sulked for hours or days and followed inconsistent gestures. This experiment made it clear for everyone that dogs loathe liars.
As per the report in Animal Cognition Journal, this research assimilated thirty-four dogs in total and all of them displayed similar reactions throughout the three segments. This research did not only make it very evident that dogs highly dislike liars, but also indicated that such experiences greatly alter a dog’s behavior. It is capable of using the previous encounter as a lesson and makes assumptions during the next encounter accordingly. It becomes more hesitant and cautious. Hence, we can say, dogs know who is trustworthy and who isn’t. Strange, no?
It was also observed that dogs judge people on the basis of their behavior towards their owner, but how?
Well, the procedure was pretty simple.
The dogs’ owner was supposed to open a jar that had its lid tightly closed. There were two other people sitting in the same room. One was made to behave quite politely with the owner, while the other behaved in the exact opposite manner. It was observed that the majority of the dogs wouldn’t take a treat from the people who were mean and disrespectful to their owners. Besides being suspicious of them, the dogs flat-out ignored these meanies.
According to the analysis of Neuroscience and Behavioural Review, dogs are able to comprehend human gestures and expressions. This makes them capable enough to sense the communication outcomes between strangers and their owners.
It turns out that dogs are far more intelligent than we could have ever imagined, isn’t it?