Wednesday November 22, 2017

Do Dogs have “Episodic Memory” ? Dogs Pay Attention to What you Say and Do and they’ll Remember too: Study

For the study, the team first trained 17 dogs to imitate human actions with the “Do as I Do” training method

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Dogs, Pixabay

London, November 24, 2016: For all dog owners out there, your canine friends are paying attention to what you say and do and they’ll remember too.

A new study has suggested that just like humans, dogs too have “episodic memory” — the ability to remember and recall events from the past.

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The study revealed that dogs can recall a person’s complex actions even when they don’t expect to have their memory tested.

Just like humans, dogs too have “episodic memory” — the ability to remember and recall events from the past. Click To Tweet

“The results of our study can be considered as a further step to break down artificially erected barriers between animals and humans,” said Claudia Fugazza from Eotvos Lorand University (ELTE) in Budapest, Hungary.

For the study, the team first trained 17 dogs to imitate human actions with the “Do as I Do” training method, in which dogs watch a person perform an action and then do the action themselves.

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For example, if their owner jumps in the air and then gives the “Do it!” command, the dog would jump in the air too.

Next, the dogs were trained to lie down after watching the human action, no matter what it was.

After the dogs had learned to lie down reliably, the researchers surprised them by saying “Do It” and the dogs did.

The dogs were then tested in that way after one minute and after one hour.

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The results showed they were able to recall the demonstrated actions after both short and long time intervals. However, their memory faded somewhat over time, the researchers observed.

The same approach can most likely be used and adapted in a wide range of animal species, to better understand how animals’ minds process their own actions and that of others around them, the researchers noted, in the study published in the journal Current Biology. (IANS)

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Hormone Oxytocin In Dogs, Is Responsible for Sensitivity which Makes them Man’s Best Friend

Dog-Human relation as we know is far different from other animals, A new study speaks what's the reason behind their friendly and loving nature toward humans.

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hormone oxytocin
Dog's hormone oxytocin sensitivity study. Pixabay

London, September 20, 2017: Ever wondered why some dogs are so friendly with their owners? It’s because of an association with genetic variations in sensitivity for the hormone Oxytocin, reveals a new study.

Since their domestication from their wild ancestor the wolf to the pets we have today, dogs have developed a unique ability to work together with humans.

One aspect of this is their willingness to “ask for help” when faced with a problem that seems to be too difficult.

However, there are large differences in the willingness to ask for help and to collaborate with humans, between breeds and between dogs of the same breed, according to the researchers.

This ability is associated with variations in sensitivity for the hormone oxytocin — known to play a role in social relationships between individuals.

The effect of oxytocin depends on the function of the structure that it binds to, the receptor, in the cell, the researchers said.

“Oxytocin is extremely important in the social interactions between people. And we also have similar variations in genes in this hormone system,” said Per Jensen, Professor at the Linkoping University, Sweden.

“Studying dog behaviour can help us understand ourselves, and may in the long term contribute to knowledge about various disturbances in social functioning,” Jensen added.

ALSO READ: Dogs can recognize human emotions: Research

For the study, published in the journal Hormones and Behavior, the team examined 60 golden retrievers whose levels of oxytocin in the blood was increased by spraying the hormone into their nose.

The results showed that some dogs with a particular genetic variant are more sensitive to the hormone oxytocin, making them more likely to seek help from their owners.

These results help us understand how dogs have changed during the process of domestication.

Analysing DNA from 21 wolves, the researchers found the same genetic variation among them.

This suggests that the genetic variation was already present when domestication of the dogs started 15,000 years ago.

(IANS)

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“Goodbye My Brother” Wrote US Marine as the World Bid Farewell to 10 Year Old Service Dog

What have we done to deserve the love of dogs? The world mourns the death of 10 year old Cena.

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Cena died at the age of 10.
"May the Lord greet you with open arms and a nice ear scratch" are DeYoung's words on his Facebook post (representational image). Pixabay
  • Michigan and the world bid a teary farewell to Marine service dog who served three years in Afghanistan
  • The 10-year-old Labrador was diagnosed with a pungent form of bone cancer, following which he was put down 
  • The Ceremony was attended by officers of various ranks and cadres and the general public. 

MICHIGAN, August 1, 2017 : “.. And now I am 27, and having to say goodbye to one of the biggest pieces of my life”, said an emotional Lance Corporal Jeff DeYoung, as hundreds of people gathered in Michigan to salute and bid a tearful final goodbye to a cancer-stricken service dog who served three-tours in Afghanistan with the US Marines.

Cena, the black Labrador was no less than a hero and received a well-deserved beautiful, military farewell before being euthanized at a museum ship on July 27.

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10-year-old Cena was diagnosed with an aggressive form of bone cancer. Having been a bomb sniffer for the US Marines until his retirement in 2014, he then became a service dog for Lance Cpl. Jeff DeYoung, his wartime partner.

Not only did the pair spend every second together for over six months in Afghanistan, they were also responsible for each other’s lives and wellness as they survived military strikes together and headed into Operation Moshtarak, the largest joint militarily operation yet in Afghanistan. Jeff remembered carrying him over his body to cross rivers, and shielding him during Talibani strikes while Cena kept his body warm during cold-dessert times.

Cena was 10 years only when he was diagnosed with cancer.
The duo was more than war time partners, DeYoung called Cena his “brother”. Facebook

Following his retirement, DeYoung had adopted Cena who then helped him deal with his post-traumatic stress disorder.

“Over the past year and a half, this dog, this brother of mine, has sat with me through homelessness, through missed jobs, my PTSD strikes, and waking up in my bath tub crying,” Jeffery DeYoung had said at a Veterans Day ceremony at Muskegon Community College during November 2015.

An evidently emotional DeYoung had also posted on Facebook publicly about Cena’s final moments with him, whom he fondly called ‘Chicken’. The status had over 250 comments and 62 shares as on August 1, 2017.

Cena was a 10 year old Labrador who served with the Us Marines.
In his post, DeYoung called Cena his “brother”. Facebook

To cherish their final days together, Lance Corporal Jeffrey DeYoung had prepared a bucket list for his “brother” Cena, at the top of which was a ride in a topless Jeep Wrangler. The Jeep was decorated and named ‘Cancer Response Team’ and was joined by multiple Jeep convoys from the lengths and breadths of the country in honor of Cena’s service.

Cena’s illness had made him immobile. Heavily medicated and in a lot of pain, he appeared for the ceremony in a homemade blue Marine vest and made his way to the ceremony in a wagon.

At the museum was a celebration of Cena’s life, and the ceremonial military farewell was also open to the general public.

 

Following a short, police-escorted convoy ride, Cena and Jeff DeYoung boarded the US LST 393 where he was euthanized to the sound of ‘Taps’, which is played at every army funeral.

DeYoung then tearfully carried his casket covered by an American flag.

The Ceremony was attended by the US Marine Corps League, Michigan State Police, Muskegon County Sheriff’s Office, Muskegon City Police, Muskegon Fire Department and officers from several other departments including a canine officer Rex, reported Associated Press.

ALSO READ: The Reason Why Dog is Man’s Best Friend

A GoFundMe page had also been set up in mid-July by fellow Marine Jacobie Baumann for donations to help build a headstone for Cena which recorded more than 1,100 responses, pledging donation worth nearly $45,000.

The news deeply struck social media which has been since abuzz with people sharing messages and kind words for both, Cena and DeYoung.

“Any dog that served overseas deserves exactly what I’ve done with Cena, if not more”, DeYoung said, as reported by Associated Press.

-by Soha Kala of NewsGram. Twitter @SohaKala


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Attention Pet lovers! Pet Fed 2017 Reaches Mumbai this December

Pet Fed is a two- day fun filled event started to strengthen the bond between people and their furry friends

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Mumbai, July 24, 2017: Are you a pet lover? Well, if yes, this news will certainly make you happy. Pet Fed, which is India’s biggest pet festival reaches Mumbai this month. It is an outdoor carnival for pets and pet lovers and there are various activities that will let you and your pet have a gala time like workshops you can attend together, stalls to shop from and there are more fun and knowledgeable stuff in store!

Pet Fed 2017 Schedule
After three successful editions in Delhi, the festival has opened its doors for people in Mumbai. Pet Fed has announced their dates for this year and Mumbai will witness the debut on 16-17th December 2017. Delhi’s fourth edition is scheduled to be from December 2-3, 2017.

Let’s love them unconditionally!
The organizers have released a promotional short video showing awe worthy Retriever puppy running around, cuddling with people of different backgrounds without any kind of prejudice towards them. The video talks about the unconditional love, which humans from all walks of life are showered with by loving animals and we all know that dogs epitomize unconditional love.

Don’t miss it!
The two-day festival celebrates the same love which we receive by our pets. A fun filled event which also teaches compassion, as Pet Fed encourages fellow humans to come out with their furry friends and gives them a chance to strengthen the special bond by spending time with their pets. If you don’t have pets at home, you can still come and share your love!

– by Kritika Dua of NewsGram, Twitter @DKritika08


NewsGram is a Chicago-based non-profit media organization. We depend upon support from our readers to maintain our objective reporting. Show your support by Donating to NewsGram. Donations to NewsGram are tax-exempt.

Click here- www.newsgram.com/donate