Dog News
  • iconFirst evidence of live-traded dogs for Maya ceremonies
    Earliest evidence that Mayas raised and traded dogs and other animals -- probably for ceremonies -- from Ceibal, Guatemala.
  • iconMice change their appearance as a result of frequent exposure to humans
    Many tame domesticated animals have a different appearance compared to their relatives in the wild, for example white patches in their fur or shorter snouts. Researchers have now for the first time shown that wild house mice develop the same visible changes -- without selection, as a result of exposure to humans alone.
  • iconSit, stay, heal: Study finds therapy dogs help stressed university students
    Therapy dog sessions for stressed-out students are an increasingly popular offering at North American universities. Now, new research confirms that some doggy one-on-one time really can do the trick of boosting student wellness.
  • iconHow cats and dogs are consuming and processing parabens
    Many households can claim at least one four-legged friend as part of the family. But pets that primarily stay indoors can have increased rates of diseases, such as diabetes, kidney diseases and hypothyroidism compared with those that stay exclusively outside. Some scientists propose that chemical substances in the home could contribute to these illnesses.
  • iconWho's a good boy? Why 'dog-speak' is important for bonding with your pet
    Scientists have shown that the way we speak to our canine friends is important in relationship-building between pet and owner, similar to the way that 'baby-talk' is to bonding between a baby and an adult.
  • iconBall or stuffed toy -- Do dogs 'know' what they're smelling?
    Dogs' excellent sense of smell is well-known, whether it is in the context of searching for people or for contraband substances. However, the question of how dogs understand what they perceive with their sense of smell has largely been unexplored. Scientists have now found evidence that dogs create a 'mental representation' of the target when they track a scent trail.
  • iconHow are we related? Easy workflow to find gene families
    Researchers have released 'GeneSeqToFamily', an open-source Galaxy workflow that helps scientists to find gene families based on the powerful 'EnsemblCompara GeneTrees' pipeline.
  • iconNumber of people killed by animals each year in the US remains unchanged
    Bites, kicks, and stings from farm animals, bees, wasps, hornets, and dogs continue to represent the most danger to humans, according to a new study.
  • iconVoice control: Why North Atlantic right whales change calls as they age
    Through extensive listening and analysis of whale calls -- which were recorded by a large collaboration of scientists over the past two decades -- researchers were able to pick up the slow gradual changes in sound production in the marine giants as they age. Looking at spectrograms of the calls, which provide visual representations of the sound, the research team could see the progression of vocal characteristics of the animals from calf throughout adulthood.
  • iconProof-of-concept study reveals feasibility of eliminating rabies in Africa
    Scientists have carried out a mass dog vaccination in Chad and determined its effect on human rabies exposure. The study employed a bio-mathematical method for estimating the transmission dynamics of rabies. The researchers conclude that with political will and the necessary funding, elimination of rabies is possible in Africa.
  • iconCracking the genetic code for complex traits in cattle
    The global 1000 Bull Genomes Consortium identified the genetic basis for accurately predicting the complex trait of height across cattle and dairy breeds by pooling large genomic datasets and phenotypes collected from 58,000 cattle. The team validated their findings using the DNA of a wild auroch, the ancient ancestor to all cattle and dairy breeds, and, in a world first, demonstrated the genes influencing height in cattle also influence the trait in humans and dogs.
  • iconBrain training for old dogs: Could touchscreen games become the Sudoku of man’s best friend?
    Spoiling old dogs in their twilight years by retiring them to the sofa and forgiving them their stubbornness or disobedience, doesn’t do our four-legged friends any good. Regular brain training and lifelong learning create positive emotions and can slow down mental deterioration in old age. Physical limitations, however, often do not allow the same sort of training as used in young dogs. In a new study, a team of researchers led by cognitive biologists propose computer interaction as a practical alternative. In the training lab, old dogs responded positively to cognitive training using educational touchscreen games.
  • iconNearly one in three pugs has an abnormal gait
    Nearly one in three pugs has an abnormal gait, which in turn is linked to other health issues, finds a Swedish study of owners of the breed.
  • iconFat cat? Here's how much to feed to lose weight
    Does your cat lay around all day, only getting up to eat and visit the litter box? Chances are, he's overweight. Maybe you've switched to the 'diet' cat food or tried feeding him less, but you might have noticed it's not easy to get that weight off. A new study explains what it takes to get kitty to slim down.
  • iconFemale cats are more likely to be right-handed, researchers discover
    Researchers have found that female cats are much more likely to use their right paw than males.
  • iconHunting dogs as possible vectors for the infectious disease tularaemia
    Tularaemia is an infectious bacterial disease that is life-threatening for rodents, rabbits and hares, but which can also infect humans and dogs. While contact with contaminated blood or meat makes hunters a high-risk group, the frequency of infections among hunting dogs has not been much studied. Researchers have now confirmed a relevant prevalence of infections in Austrian hunting dogs following a serological study in which seven percent of the animals tested positive. This could lead to more intense debate as to whether the often asymptomatic animals represent an additional risk of infection for people.
  • iconCanine distemper confirmed in Far Eastern leopard, world's most endangered big cat
    The Far Eastern or Amur leopard (Panthera pardus orientalis) is already among the rarest of the world's big cats, but new research reveals that it faces yet another threat: infection with canine distemper virus (CDV).
  • iconAre amoebae safe harbors for plague?
    Amoebae, single-celled organisms common in soil, water and grade-school science classrooms, may play a key role in the survival and spread of deadly plague bacteria. New research shows that plague bacteria, Yersinia pestis, not only survive, but thrive and replicate once ingested by an amoeba. The discovery could help scientists understand why plague outbreaks can smolder, stay dormant for years, and re-emerge with a vengeance.
  • iconExperts raise concerns over raw meat diets for cats and dogs
    Experts are warning dog and cat owners to be aware of the risks associated with feeding their pets raw meat-based diets, instead of the more conventional dry or canned pet foods.
  • iconMost dog treats exceed recommended daily energy allowance
    Most commercially available dog treats contain a range of undefined ingredients, including sugars, and often exceed the recommended daily energy allowance for treats ('complementary feed'), warn researchers.
  • iconCommitted to relatives: Hounds and wolves share their parasites
    Grey wolves, as all wild animals, are hosts to a variety of parasites. The presence of grey wolves in German forests has little influence on the parasite burden of hunting dogs, according to a new study.
  • iconSorry, Grumpy Cat: Study finds dogs are brainier than cats
    The first study to actually count the number of cortical neurons in the brains of a number of carnivores, including cats and dogs, has found that dogs possess significantly more of them than cats.
  • iconDogs get the Hollywood treatment to make animal animations more realistic
    Researchers are creating a library of movement data from different dog breeds, to make animal animations in films and video games more realistic.
  • iconDogs mouth-lick to communicate with angry humans
    New research has found that dogs lick their mouths as a response to looking at angry human faces, suggesting that domestic canines may have a functional understanding of emotional information.
  • iconA chicken-flavored electrolyte drink could help sniffer dogs stay hydrated
    The first comparison of plain water, electrolyte injections and a chicken-flavored electrolyte drink as techniques for keeping sniffer dogs hydrated when working in hot weather finds that while all are safe and effective, dogs drink more and are more hydrated when given a chicken-flavored electrolyte drink.
  • iconGenome sequencing reveals extensive inbreeding in Scandinavian wolves
    Researchers have for the first time determined the full genetic consequences of intense inbreeding in a threatened species.
  • iconSmiling human faces are attractive to dogs, thanks to oxytocin
    Researchers found that oxytocin made dogs interested in smiling human faces. It also made them see angry faces as less threatening. Associated with affection and trust, the hormone oxytocin is probably a key factor in the interaction between dogs and humans.
  • iconDog ownership linked to lower mortality rate
    A team of scientists have used national registries of more than 3.4 million Swedes aged 40 to 80 to study the association between dog ownership and cardiovascular health. Their study shows that dog owners had a lower risk of death due to cardiovascular disease or to other causes during the 12-year follow-up.
  • iconHow to keep cows happy
    New research now shows that removing splashes of colors, shadows or water puddles from corrals, keeping noise levels down and not using dogs and electric prods can dramatically reduce the stress cattle experience.
  • iconPérigord black truffle cultivated in the UK for the first time
    The Mediterranean black truffle, one of the world's most expensive ingredients, has been successfully cultivated in the UK, as climate change threatens its native habitat.
  • iconTreatment for dogs alleviates fear of noisy fireworks
    Many dogs suffer anxiety and fear from the loud bangs and explosions of firework displays. A new study shows how a medicinal treatment can help alleviate common fear behaviors, such as trembling and whining.
  • iconGenetic study uncovers evolutionary history of dingoes
    A major study of dingo DNA has revealed dingoes most likely migrated to Australia in two separate waves via a former land bridge with Papua New Guinea. The find has significant implications for conservation, with researchers recommending the two genetically distinct populations of dingoes be treated as different groups for management and conservation purposes.
  • iconHand surgeons provide update on wild animal bites
    Injuries from wild animals are relatively uncommon, with a risk of unusual infections and other potentially severe complications.
  • iconDogs may protect against childhood eczema and asthma
    Two new studies show there may be even more reason to love your dog as they may provide a protective effect against eczema and asthma.
  • iconDogs are more expressive when someone is looking
    Dogs produce more facial expressions when humans are looking at them, according to new research.
  • iconDomestication has not made dogs cooperate more with each other compared to wolves
    Following domestication, dogs should be more tolerant and cooperative with conspecifics and humans compared to wolves. But looking at both in more naturalistic living conditions, however, speaks for more cooperative behavior of wolves. Researchers now show that the wild ancestors are excelling their domesticated relatives in teamwork. In an experimental approach dogs but not wolves failed to cooperatively pull the two ends of a rope to obtain a piece of food.
  • iconUnraveling the genetics of disc disease in dogs
    Since the early 1900s, veterinarians have observed intervertebral disc disease -- a common cause of back pain, rear limb paralysis and inability to walk -- more frequently in dogs with short legs (dachshund, French bulldog, and Pekingese to name a few.) But they couldn't pinpoint why -- until now.Why short-legged dogs more likely to develop painful disease
  • iconHow rabies can induce frenzied behavior
    Scientists may finally understand how the rabies virus can drastically change its host's behavior to help spread the disease, which kills about 59,000 people annually. A new study shows how a small piece of the rabies virus can bind to and inhibit certain receptors in the brain that play a crucial role in regulating the behavior of mammals. This interferes with communication in the brain and induces frenzied behaviors that favor the transmission of the virus.
  • iconThe hormone that could be making your dog aggressive discovered
    Thousands of people are hospitalized every year for dog bites, and aggressive behavior is a major reason dogs end up in shelters. Biologists have studied the biology behind canine aggression, specifically the role of the hormones vasopressin and oxytocin.
  • iconObese dogs helped by 'effective' weight loss trials
    On average overweight dogs lose an average of 11 percent of their body weight when enrolled on a weight loss trial according to researchers who have conducted the largest international multi-center weight study.
  • icon3-D analysis of dog fossils sheds light on domestication debate
    In an effort to settle the debate about the origin of dog domestication, a technique that uses 3-D scans of fossils is helping researchers determine the difference between dogs and wolves.
  • iconOwners of seriously ill pets at risk of stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms
    Owners of seriously or terminally ill pets are more likely to suffer with stress and symptoms of depression and anxiety, as well as poorer quality of life, compared with owners of healthy animals, finds a study.
  • iconDogs' social skills linked to oxytocin sensitivity
    The tendency of dogs to seek contact with their owners is associated with genetic variations in sensitivity for the hormone oxytocin, according to a new study. The results contribute to our knowledge of how dogs have changed during their development from wolf to household pet.
  • iconWolves understand cause and effect better than dogs
    A rattle will only make noise if you shake it. Animals like the wolf also understand such connections and are better at this than their domesticated descendants. Researchers say that wolves have a better causal understanding than dogs and that they follow human-given communicative cues equally well. The study provides insight that the process of domestication can also affect an animal's causal understanding.
  • iconAre you barking up the wrong tree by sleeping with your dog?
    Let sleeping dogs lie … in the bedroom. That’s according to a new study that’s sure to set many tails wagging.
  • iconEvidence-based growth standards chart for dogs
    Researchers have developed the first evidence-based growth standards chart for dogs.
  • iconResearch dog helps scientists save endangered carnivores
    Scat-sniffing research dogs are helping scientists map out a plan to save reclusive jaguars, pumas, bush dogs and other endangered carnivores in the increasingly fragmented forests of northeastern Argentina, according to a new study.
  • iconSomething to sneeze about: Democratic voting in African wild dog packs
    Scientists studying African wild dogs in Botswana have found members of this endangered species use sneezes to vote on when the pack will move off and start hunting.
  • iconThe sniff test of self-recognition confirmed: Dogs have self-awareness
    A new research study used a sniff-test to evaluate the ability of dogs to recognize themselves. The experiment confirms the hypothesis of dogs' self-cognition proposed last year.
  • iconWolf behavior undeterred by tailings ponds and pit mines
    New research shows that predation rates of moose have increased near areas of high human disturbance, but low human activity, such as tailings ponds and pit mines.
  • iconAn alternative to wolf control to save endangered caribou
    The iconic woodland caribou across North America face increasing predation pressures from wolves. A short-term solution to caribou conservation would be to kill wolves. But a new government policy looks at reducing the invasive species moose numbers propping up the wolf population. Researchers have now evaluated the effects of this policy on the caribou population.
  • iconBeetle's best friend: Trained dogs most efficient in monitoring hermit beetle larvae
    Considered at risk of extinction, hermit beetles need to be efficiently monitored. However, due to their life cycle, standard sampling is unreasonably time-consuming and quite damaging to both the species and their habitat. In searching for a solution, scientists suggested that trained dogs might be more successful.
  • iconNew therapeutic antibody for dog cancers
    Scientists have developed a new chimeric antibody that suppresses malignant cancers in dogs, showing promise for safe and effective treatment of intractable cancers.
  • iconSuccessful guide dogs have 'tough love' moms, study finds
    Much has been written on the pitfalls of being a helicopter parent, one who insulates children from adversity rather than encouraging their independence. A new study seems to back up this finding -- in dogs.
  • iconLargest-ever study of pets and kids' health finds no link
    A large body of research has reported an association between the pet ownership and better health among children. But a new study that is the largest-ever to explore the issue contradicts the common thinking. Researchers did find that children from pet-owning families tended to have better general health, but those differences disappeared when factors such as family income and family housing were considered.
  • iconCollaboration between pet owners, vets and researchers helps dogs and children with a rare and severe epilepsy
    New hope is being given to children who suffer from a rare and severe form of epilepsy, thanks to new, unique research.
  • iconThe truth about cats' and dogs' environmental impact
    US cats and dogs cause 25-30 percent of the environmental impact of meat consumption in this country. The nation's 163 million cats and dogs eat as much food as all the people in France. People should keep their pets -- and keep feeding them meat -- but there may be steps pet owners can take to reduce their environmental impact, says a researcher.