Who’s a clever dog? Scientists study secrets of canine cognition | Dogs | The Guardian

Dogs can figure out some things that even chimps can’t. Our science correspondent puts her puppy retriever to the test

By Nicola Davis, Mon 17 Jan 2022 02.00 EST

Studying the skills of dogs such as six-month-old Calisto can help shed light on which parts of communication are unique to humans. Photograph: Sarah Lee/The Guardian

It’s a cold winter’s day, and I’m standing in a room watching my dog stare fixedly at two flower pots.

I’m about to get an answer to a burning question: is my puppy a clever girl?

Dogs have been our companions for millennia, domesticated sometime between 15,000 and 30,000 years ago. And the bond endures: according to the latest figures from the Pet Food Manufacturers Association 33% of households in the UK have a dog.

But as well as fulfilling roles from Covid detection to lovable family rogue, scientists investigating how dogs think, express themselves and communicate with humans say dogs can also teach us about ourselves.

And so I am here at the dog cognition centre at the University of Portsmouth with Calisto, the flat-coated retriever, and a pocket full of frankfurter sausage to find out how.

Editor’s Note: Read more, see link below for original item…

Source: Who’s a clever dog? Scientists study secrets of canine cognition | Dogs | The Guardian