Dogs feel no shame despite the sad look
The next time you start shaking your finger and shouting “Bad Dog!” because your dog chewed up your favourite fuzzy slippers, just remember that no matter how guilty your dog looks, it doesn’t understand what your rant is about.
Behaviourists insist dogs lack shame. The guilty look ” head cowered, ears back, eyes droopy” is a reaction to the tantrum you are throwing, not the damage they did hours earlier.
“Just get over it and remind yourself not to put temptation in the way next time,” says Bonnie Beaver, a professor at Texas A&M University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and director of the American College of Veterinary Behaviourists.
But scientific findings haven’t put a dent in the popularity of online dog shaming sites like dogshaming.com or videos like those posted on youtube.com/crackrockcandy. In the photos and videos, dogs wear humorous written “confessions” and often are surrounded by the remnants of their misdeeds. There is no question that in all the photos, they look guilty of eating, drinking, chewing, licking or destroying something they shouldn’t have.
Jeremy Lakaszcyck of Boston started putting shaming videos of his beagle Maymo, on YouTube, but behaviorists insist dogs lack shame.
Dogshaming.com was the first and is among the most popular sites. Since Pascale Lemire started it in August 2012, it has received more than 58 million page views and more than 65,000 submissions. A submission has to come with a photo showing your dog’s guilty look.
Lemire, who lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, also published a book called Dog Shaming, which hit the New York Times best-seller list in January.
“I don’t think dogs actually feel shame,” Lemire says. “I think they know how to placate us with this sad puppy-dog look that makes us think they’re ashamed. My guess is that their thinking is: `Oh man, my owner is super mad about something, but I don’t know what, but he seems to calm down when I give him the sad face, so let’s do that again.”‘
Although she thinks the online dog shaming memes are all in good fun.
“People come for a laugh,” Lemire said. “They see that their dog isn’t the only one who does awful things. People don’t shame their dogs out of anger, they do it out of love.”
‘I am not saying that dogs might not feel guilt, just that the ‘guilty look’ is not an indication of it.’– Alexandra Horowitz.
A dog owner helped get celebrities into the trend. In late 2011, Jeremy Lakaszcyck of Boston started putting shaming videos of his lemon beagle, Maymo, on YouTube. Four months later, Ellen DeGeneres ran one of them on her show and comedian Ricky Gervais tweeted it. Then the popularity of the videos soared, Lakaszcyck said.
He also submitted photos to Lemire for dogshaming.com, which made Maymo more famous.
Maymo has a naturally sad or guilty face and senses something is wrong if Lakaszcyck speaks in a stern voice. “They know when their owners are angry.
“Maymo can sit for quite a while looking sad because he’s a ham. It’s natural, and he knows a treat is coming. His tail usually wags through the wait. He’s happy on one end and sad on the other,” he said.
Stray dog Hank becomes big hit in Brewers’ camp
The most popular member of the Milwaukee Brewers at spring training is a rookie who comes with pedigree, an excellent clubhouse presence and strong legs.
Four of them, in fact. Along with a button nose and scruffy, white fur.
Hank the dog may be the early lock for camp MVP “Most Valuable Pet.”
“Yeah, he’s making a big impact, which I’ve got to say is pretty cool,” pitcher Yovani Gallardo said. “It’s getting a lot of attention, for sure. I think he likes it, too.”
The dog days for the Brewers arrived Feb. 17 when the stray pooch wandered on to the team’s complex looking a little rough.
Team employees took him to a veterinarian for a checkup and bath. The vet spotted a tail injury and some gray markings around his right hind leg, a sign that it may have been run over by a car.
The vet estimated Hank is around 2 years old. No definitive word on the breed, although he looks like a bichon frise mix.
The Brewers quickly took in the dog and named it “Hank” after baseball great Hank Aaron, who began his career in Milwaukee.
One day, coach Ed Sedar went to the food line to get Hank’s favorite breakfast dish, scrambled eggs. Barely a week into camp, Hank was already been assigned No. 1 for a doggy jersey.
Unlike some temperamental pitchers, Hank doesn’t mind being on a short leash. There was Hank posing for a snapshot in the clubhouse with righty Brandon Kintzler.
Dogs’ brain scans reveal vocal responses
Devoted dog owners often claim that their pets understand them. A new study suggests they might be right.
By placing dogs in an MRI scanner, researchers in Hungary found that the canine brain reacts to voices in the same way that the human brain does.
Emotionally charged sounds, such as crying or laughter, also prompted similar responses, perhaps explaining why dogs are attuned to human emotions.
The work is published in the journal Current Biology.
Snuffles gets new home, after capturing hearts around the world
Snuffles, the unloved dog with two noses, now has a new home after capturing hearts around the world.
Pamela Jackson, boss of the Dogs Trust re-homing centre, in Glasgow, said: “We had 40 messages and calls before we opened plus 20 emails when we got in.
“People were contacting us from as far as the USA and South Africa as well as Britain.
“Some families just turned up hoping to adopt him.
“We wanted the best home for him.
“The eventual new owner took him for a walk to get to know him and they got on brilliantly.
“He said Snuffles was perfect and everything he was looking for.”
Snuffles will move in next week with an East Lothian family who have a large house on an acre of land, ideal for a good run.
Britain’s Biggest Dog
Meet Snuffles the abandoned dog with TWO NOSES
Despite many of his pals at Glasgow’s Dog’s Rehoming Centre moving on, the peculiar pooch hasn’t had any takers
This peculiar pooch with TWO NOSES is desperate to find a home.
Despite many of his furry friends moving on, Snuffles hasn’t had any takers because of his odd looks.
The four-month-old Belgian Shepherd arrived at Glasgow’s Dog’s Rehoming Centre a month ago after stays in FOUR others.
Staff are concerned his odd looks will see him continue to be missed out.
Vets suggest the appearance of having two noses is down to a rare birth defect.
Mainers Journey to 2014 Westminster
The Westminster Kennel Club’s 138th Annual Dog Show, a benched conformation show dedicated to the sport of purebred dogs, takes place on February 10th and 11th in New York City.
Stray dogs rounded up and killed in Sochi
The city of Sochi has hired a private company to kill stray dogs before the Winter Olympics, it has been claimed.
Describing the animals as ‘biological trash’, the owner of the company has reportedly admitted been given job with using poison and traps to rid the city of stray dogs before thousands of tourists and competitors arrive for the Games’ opening ceremony next Friday.
2 Feb, 2014
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