Does your Dog Prefer Affection or Treats?

Wednesday, August 17, 2016 03:20:10 PM America/Los_Angeles

Now there's even more proof that dogs are truly man's best friend. New research shows that dogs may actually prefer your praise and affection over an oh-so-yummy dog treat. Emory University neuroscientist, Gregory Berns, and author of "How Dogs Love Us: A Neuroscientist and His Adopted Dog Decode the Brain," led a study to find out if dogs had a preference for social rewards or food.

In the study, he and his team conducted various experiments with about 15 dogs and used an MRI to examine their brain activity. The results showed that for a majority of the dogs, their brains were stimulated by praise as much as if not more than the food.Ultimately, Berns said that his research shows that dogs are primarily motivated by praise. For full details, check out the study in the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience.

Knowing this, it's no wonder many trainers advocate on positive training techniques to successfully teach your dog new tricks or how to use a new pet potty, such as DoggieLawn. This knowledge is not only useful for helping us train our pets, but it might also be useful for determing if a dog is good for therapy jobs or tasks that don't require much human interaction.

 Dogs prefer praise Image Source: Jeff Drongowski via Flickr


TAGS: training