Dog News
  • iconNew dog, old tricks? Stray dogs can understand human cues
    Pet dogs are highly receptive to commands from their owners. But is this due to their training or do dogs have an innate ability to understand human signals? A new study finds that 80% of untrained stray dogs successfully followed pointing directions from people to a specific location. The results suggest that dogs can understand and respond to complex gestures without any training, meaning that dogs may have an innate connection to human behaviors.
  • iconScientists unexpectedly witness wolf puppies play fetch
    When it comes to playing a game of fetch, many dogs are naturals. But now, researchers report that the remarkable ability to interpret human social communicative cues that enables a dog to go for a ball and then bring it back also exists in wolves.
  • iconNewly discovered genetic element adjusts coat color in dogs
    Why are Irish Setters so red while other breeds can come in different hues? Geneticists now have an answer for why some dogs have more intense coat colors than others.
  • iconPreventing adverse drug reactions in dogs
    If not identified before surgery, a rare genetic mutation could result in your dog being exposed to dangerously high levels of anesthetic agents.
  • iconJaguars could prevent a not-so-great American biotic exchange
    In eastern Panama, canid species from North and South America are occurring together for the first time. Urban and agricultural development and deforestation along the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor might be generating a new passageway for these invasive species adapted to human disturbance.
  • iconDogs and wolves are both good at cooperating
    A team of researchers have found that dogs and wolves are equally good at cooperating with partners to obtain a reward. When tested in same-species pairs, dogs and wolves proved equally successful and efficient at solving a given problem. This finding suggests that basic cooperation abilities were present in a common ancestor of dogs and wolves, and have not been lost in the domestication process.
  • iconEarly-life exposure to dogs may lessen risk of developing schizophrenia
    Ever since humans domesticated the dog, the faithful, obedient and protective animal has provided its owner with companionship and emotional well-being. Now, a study suggests that being around 'man's best friend' from an early age may have a health benefit as well -- lessening the chance of developing schizophrenia as an adult.
  • iconDogs process numerical quantities in similar brain region as humans
    The results of a new canine numerosity study suggests that a common neural mechanism has been deeply conserved across mammalian evolution.
  • iconAnimal-assisted interventions positive for people's health
    The impact of animal-assisted interventions for both patients and health services could be substantial, but more rigorous research is needed.
  • iconDogs promote page turning for young readers
    Reading in the presence of a pooch may be the page-turning motivation young children need, suggests a researcher. A new study examines the behavior of 17 children from Grades 1 to 3 while reading with and without a dog.
  • iconUnique sled dogs helped the inuit thrive in the North American Arctic
    The legacy of these Inuit dogs survives today in Arctic sled dogs, making them one of the last remaining descendant populations of indigenous, pre-European dog lineages in the Americas.
  • iconDinosaur skull turns paleontology assumptions on their head
    A team of researchers has unearthed a well-preserved Styracosaurus skull -- and its facial imperfections have implications for how paleontologists identify new species of dinosaurs. Nicknamed Hannah, the dinosaur was a Styracosaurus -- a horned dinosaur over five meters in length with a fan of long horns. Paleontologists have learned much from those horns -- because they aren't symmetrical.
  • iconSimple model explains why different four-legged animals adopt similar gaits
    Most mammals walk at slow speeds and run or trot at intermediate speeds because these movement strategies are energetically optimal, according to a new study.
  • iconDog and sheep bones help injured pigeons fly again
    Sheep and dog bones can be whittled into orthopedic pins that stabilize pigeons' fractured wings, helping the fractures to heal properly without follow-up surgery. Researchers describe the treatment, which is cheaper and more efficient than using metal pins for pigeon rehabilitative surgeries.
  • iconWatch out for 'feather duvet lung' caution doctors
    Watch out for 'feather duvet lung' doctors have warned after treating a middle aged man with severe lung inflammation that developed soon after he bought feather-filled bedding.
  • iconHumans' ability to read dogs' facial expressions is learned, not innate
    Researchers assessed how experience with dogs affects humans' ability to recognize dog emotions. Participants who grew up in a cultural context with a dog-friendly attitude were more proficient at recognizing dog emotions. This suggests that the ability to recognize dogs' expressions is learned through age and experience and is not an evolutionary adaptation.
  • iconAI could help diagnose dogs suffering from chronic pain and Chiari-like malformation
    A new artificial intelligence (AI) technique could eventually help veterinarians quickly identify Cavalier King Charles Spaniel (CKCS) dogs with a chronic disease that causes crippling pain. The same technique identified unique biomarkers which inspired further research into the facial changes in dogs affected by Chiari-like malformation (CM).
  • iconLiver-chip identifies drug toxicities in human, rat, and dog models
    Liver toxicity is a big problem in the drug, food, and consumer products industries, especially because results in animal models fail to predict how chemicals will affect humans. A new Liver-Chip successfully predicts how different drugs impact rat, dog, and human models, and could help get the most effective drugs to patients faster.
  • iconNew findings on gut microbiome's interactions with GI diseases
    A study offers new insight on how the gut bacteria of dogs interact with a healthy vs. unhealthy GI tract, which could contribute to the development of new therapies for GI diseases in both dogs and humans.
  • iconYour dog might be hiding its true colors
    New research shows that some breeds of dogs have hidden coat colors -- and in some cases, other traits -- that have been lurking all along.
  • iconEstrogen's opposing effects on mammary tumors in dogs
    Estrogen's role in canine mammary cancer is more complex than previously understood, according to new research. The nuanced findings may help explain why dogs spayed at a young age are more likely to develop more aggressive cancers, the team says.
  • iconDetection dogs and DNA on the trail of endangered lizards
    Detection dogs trained to sniff out the scat of an endangered lizard in California's San Joaquin Valley, combined with genetic species identification, could represent a new noninvasive sampling technique for lizard conservation worldwide.
  • iconGenetic risk factor for laryngeal paralysis in miniature bull terriers identified
    Laryngeal paralysis is a serious and sometimes deadly disease in some dog breeds that prevents proper opening of the larynx for breathing. Specialists in canine head and neck surgery and geneticists have identify a mutation responsible for laryngeal paralysis in Miniature Bull Terriers, enabling the development of a genetic test for the disease.
  • iconRespiratory diseases linked with high blood pressure in lungs
    Pulmonary hypertension is a type of high blood pressure that affects the lungs of both animals and people. When tiny vessels in the lungs become narrowed or blocked, it becomes harder for blood to flow through and can cause the heart to weaken or fail.
  • iconGenes play a role in dog breed differences in behavior
    Border collies are highly trainable, greyhounds love to chase, and German shepherds make good guard dogs. While the environment plays a role, traits like these are highly heritable, according to a study of 101 dog breeds. The work identifies 131 genetic variants associated with breed differences in behavior.
  • iconDog ownership associated with longer life, especially among heart attack and stroke survivors
    Dog ownership was associated with a 33% lower risk of early death for heart attack survivors living alone and 27% reduced risk of early death for stroke survivors living alone, compared to people who did not own a dog. Dog ownership was associated with a 24% reduced risk of all-cause mortality and a 31% lower risk of death by heart attack or stroke compared to non-owners.
  • iconDog owners often inaccurately measure out kibble
    New research finds dog owners are often inaccurate when measuring out kibble using a scoop, putting the dogs at risk of under-nourishment or weight gain.
  • iconIdentifying a gene for canine night blindness
    Researchers have identified the gene mutation responsible for a form of night blindness in dogs. Strategies to treat this condition, which affects a layer of neurons just below the primary photoreceptor cells, could also inform treatment of other diseases that rely on targeting this cell type.
  • iconLop-eared rabbits more likely to have tooth/ear problems than erect eared cousins
    Lop (floppy) eared rabbits are more likely than erect ('up') eared breeds to have potentially painful ear and dental problems that may ultimately affect their ability to hear and eat properly, finds a small observational study.
  • iconImmune response against Toxocara roundworms helps explain disease
    Neurotoxocarosis (NT) occurs in humans when larvae of the Toxocara roundworm migrate into the central nervous system. That infection is accompanied by a complex molecular signaling cascade, including changes to anti-inflammatory lipid molecules, researchers now report.
  • iconDog rabies vaccination programs affect human exposure, prophylaxis use
    The World Health Organization has made it a goal to eliminate human rabies deaths due to dog bites by the year 2030. An increase in dog rabies vaccination rates decreases dog rabies cases, human exposure, and human deaths, researchers now report.
  • iconWhat wolves' broken teeth reveal about their lives
    An evolutionary biologist has spent more than three decades studying the skulls of many species of large carnivores -- including wolves, lions and tigers -- that lived from 50,000 years ago to the present. She reports today the answer to a puzzling question.
  • iconThe problem with promoting 'responsible dog ownership'
    Dog welfare campaigns that tell people to be 'responsible owners' don't help to promote behaviour change, a new report suggests. Dog owners interviewed for a study all considered themselves to be responsible owners, despite there being great variation in key aspects of their dog-owning behavior.
  • iconAntibody testing reveals dogs can suffer from same autoimmune encephalitis as humans
    Researchers have found that dogs can suffer from the same type of autoimmune encephalitis that people do. The finding could lead to better screening methods for diagnosis and possibly more effective treatments for canine encephalitis.
  • iconCats are securely bonded to their people, too
    Cats have a reputation for being aloof and independent. But a study of the way domestic cats respond to their caregivers suggests that their socio-cognitive abilities and the depth of their human attachments have been underestimated. The findings show that, much like children and dogs, pet cats form secure and insecure bonds with their human caretakers.
  • iconOverweight Danes are more likely to have overweight dogs
    A new study reports that the prevalence of overweight dogs is markedly larger among overweight owners than among normal weight owners. Part of the explanation lies in whether treats are used as training tools or ''hygge-snacks''.
  • iconThe diet-microbiome connection in inflammatory bowel disease
    A change in diet is a go-to strategy for treating inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn's. In dogs with a similar illness, researchers tracked specific changes in the microbiome as the pets went into remission. The team's findings, which mirror what is seen in children with Crohn's, could inform the design of improved therapeutic diets.
  • iconHidden danger from pet dogs in Africa
    Researchers have detected a potentially human-infective microbe in pet dogs in Nigeria.
  • iconFeeding pets raw food is not considered by pet owners as a significant source of infections
    An extensive international survey indicates that pet owners do not consider raw food to considerably increase infection risk in their household. In the survey, targeted at pet owners, raw food was reliably determined to be a contaminant only in three households.
  • iconFurry friends ease depression, loneliness after spousal loss
    Researchers have found the companionship of a pet after the loss of a spouse can help reduce feelings of depression and loneliness in older adults.
  • iconHow humans have shaped dogs' brains
    Dog brain structure varies across breeds and is correlated with specific behaviors, according to new research. These findings show how, by selectively breeding for certain behaviors, humans have shaped the brains of their best friends.
  • iconYet another way dogs help the military: aeromedical patient evacuations
    Animal-assisted therapy has many benefits in health care. Yet, its biological and psychosocial effects in the military are unknown, especially for injured, airlifted patients. Researchers teamed up with a non-profit animal organization that trains therapy dogs to see if an animal-assisted intervention could reduce stress in this setting. Results showed that levels of the stress biomarkers cortisol, alpha-amylase, and immunoglobulin A, significantly decreased after a 20-minute intervention with the dogs, regardless of post-traumatic stress symptom severity.
  • iconHush, baby -- the dog is whimpering!
    We are all familiar with the sounds of a cat or dog vying for human attention, and for pet-owners, these sounds are particularly evocative. Dog sounds are especially sad to both cat and dog owners, who actually rate a whimpering dog as sounding as sad as a crying baby.
  • iconTreating dogs with human breast cancer drug
    Like many women who develop a particular type of breast cancer, the same gene -- HER2 -- also appears to be the cause of lung cancer in many dogs. Researchers found that neratinib -- a drug that has successfully been used to battle human breast cancer -- might also work for many of the nearly 40,000 dogs in the US that annually develop the most common type of canine lung cancer, known as CPAC.
  • iconDog down: Effort helps emergency medical staff treat law enforcement K-9s
    Law enforcement K-9s face the same dangers their human handlers confront. Recognizing a gap in care for law enforcement K-9s injured on the job, a team of veterinarians, emergency medical services experts and canine handlers has developed protocols for emergency medical service personnel who may be called upon to help treat and transport the injured dogs.
  • iconThe growing trend of emotional support animals
    Emotional Support Animals (ESAs) are showing up in places previously understood to be animal-free. The growing trend includes 'certifying' animals to provide emotional assistance to a person with a diagnosable mental condition or emotional disorder. New research outlines the ethical challenge and offers possible solutions to better serve both people who feel they need ESAs and those who must comply with the animals.
  • iconIntense look at La Brea Tar Pits explains why we have coyotes, not saber-toothed cats
    The most detailed study to date of ancient predators trapped in the La Brea Tar Pits is helping Americans understand why today we're dealing with coyotes dumping over garbage cans and not saber-toothed cats ripping our arms off.
  • iconFearing cougars more than wolves, Yellowstone elk manage threats from both predators
    Wolves are charismatic, conspicuous, and easy to single out as the top predator affecting populations of elk, deer, and other prey animals. However, a new study has found that the secretive cougar is actually the main predator influencing the movement of elk across the winter range of northern Yellowstone National Park.
  • iconCancer without end? Discovery yields fresh insights
    Scientists describe the evolutionary dynamics of a sexually transmitted cancer affecting dogs, which arose in a single ancient animal, living as much as 8.5 millennia ago. The findings provide fresh insights into disease evolution relevant to human cancer study and treatment.
  • iconThe curious tale of the cancer 'parasite' that sailed the seas
    A contagious canine cancer that conquered the world by spreading between dogs during mating likely arose around 6,000 years ago in Asia and spread around the globe through maritime activities, scientists say.
  • iconGene transcripts from ancient wolf analyzed after 14,000 years in permafrost
    RNA -- the short-lived transcripts of genes -- from the 'Tumat puppy', a wolf of the Pleistocene era has been isolated, and its sequence analyzed in a new study. The results establish the possibility of examining a range of RNA transcripts from ancient organisms, a possibility previously thought extremely unlikely because of RNA's short lifespan.
  • iconGenetic similarities of osteosarcoma between dogs and children
    A bone cancer known as osteosarcoma is genetically similar in dogs and human children, according to the results of a new study. The findings could help break the logjam in the treatment of this deadly disease, which hasn't seen a significant medical breakthrough in nearly three decades.
  • iconResearchers track how cats' weights change over time
    Researchers have accessed data on more than 19 million cats and have learned that most cats continue to put on weight as they age.
  • iconInbreeding depression reduces litter sizes in golden retrievers
    New research shows that inbreeding depression, the result of breeding closely-related individuals, reduces litter sizes in purebred golden retrievers.
  • iconIt's dog eat dog on the canine social ladder
    Climbing the social ladder is a 'ruff' business for dogs, new research shows.
  • iconDNA from tooth in Florida man's foot solves 25-year-old shark bite mystery
    In 2018, a Florida man found a piece of tooth embedded in his foot from a shark bite off Flagler Beach 24 years earlier. A DNA test of the tooth revealed the kind of shark that had nabbed his foot nearly a quarter century ago: a blacktip.
  • iconLearning from experience is all in the timing
    Animals learn the hard way which sights, sounds, and smells are relevant to survival. New research in flies shows that the timing of these cues plays an important role in how mental associations arise, and elucidates brain pathways involved in this process.
  • iconGlobal data resource shows genetic diversity of chickens
    A total of 174 chicken breeds are described in a publicly accessible database which scientists have built up in recent years. This database, the Synbreed Chicken Diversity Panel (SCDP), includes information about a large proportion of the available chicken species and their diversity. The researchers created a family tree of exceptional completeness and detail.
  • iconJoint hypermobility related to anxiety, also in animals
    Researchers report the first evidence in a non-human species, the domestic dog, of a relation between joint hypermobility and excitability: dogs with more joint mobility and flexibility tend to have more anxiety problems.