Inner Workings of Man’s Best Friend

psychology

Dogs are the most common pet in the world, and it’s really no surprise. Humans domesticated dogs thousands of years ago, and they are strikingly similar to people. At the same time, dogs are also very different in some respects. These are a few ways in which dogs both mimic and are completely different from their human owners.

Emotions

Dogs are able to experience the emotional level of a two-year-old child. This includes love, anger, shyness and joy. Many dog owners have noticed this, and it almost goes without saying.

At the same time, humans experience several emotions that dogs can’t. A dog is unable to feel pride or guilt, but many dog owners believe otherwise based on the dog’s behavior.

Socialization

Everyone knows that both dogs and humans are social creatures, but the social behaviors are different. Dogs concentrate on hierarchy. It doesn’t matter if it’s with other dogs or people. There has to be a leader that makes most of the decisions. If the human doesn’t lead, then the dog will.

While hierarchy is present in human societies, it doesn’t matter nearly as much as with dog societies. Even puppies are hardwired to feel this way. This is why they will push back if you push on them.

No Memories

Dogs don’t have a memory in the human sense. Humans are able to remember specific moments due to episodic memory. Dogs can’t recall any specific moment from the past. At the same time, they can learn tricks and strategies from humans and elder dogs. They can use what they learn, but they won’t remember learning it.

Runner’s High

Most mammals that run can experience runner’s high, which occurs after running for a long time. This is much stronger with dogs because they have been conditioned to run long distances just to hunt and survive.

Dogs share many things with humans. They have emotions, can learn tricks and skills and have a need to socialize. At the same time, there are many differences. They have a stronger runner’s high, need a hierarchy and don’t experience more mature emotions. Regardless of the differences, dogs and humans have an obvious kinship that will last for many years.

The Psychology of Dogs