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News: Guest Posts
You are Invited to a Canine Science Conference
with free live streaming
If you think I’m beginning to sound like a broken record, Thank You! That means you stopped by Dog Spies in May 2013 and read a post with the same title. But that was #SPARCS2013, and this is #SPARCS2014; same concept, different location, topics and speakers. During this year’s 3-day event, June 20-22 2014, leading canine researchers will cover three general areas of research that get at the core...
News: Guest Posts
Drop Outs and Bloopers: Behind the Scenes of Canine Science
I judge dogs when I meet them, but not in the way you might expect. You see, every dog and owner I meet gets filtered through a lens called “Potential Canine Science Study Participants.” The growing field of canine behavior and cognition research is not built on the backs of lab beagles. Instead, research depends on the kindness and interest of dog owners who sign up their dogs to join any of the...
News: Guest Posts
One Day, You Will Smell Like a Dead Chicken
Unfortunately, this is true. I’ll explain. Dogs are trained to sniff out a lot of things, and some of those “things” are human remains. Human remains, except those in a cemetery, are usually not out in the open; someone doesn’t want them found or there has been an accident. But bring your own Scooby Doo to the case, and you might have a fighting chance. But how do dogs get into detection mode?...
News: Guest Posts
What Should I Feed My Dog?
Book Review: Dog Food Logic
How wonderful if you could pose this question just once in your dog’s life and receive a perfect answer that would last a lifetime. Imagine if there were a ‘right’ formula, and once you know it, you could feed your dog forever and ever on the same exquisite diet. Your dog, in return, would be the happiest and healthiest doggie camper there ever was. Unfortunately, “What should I feed my dog?” is...
News: Guest Posts
Canine Urination 101: Handstands and Leg Lifts Are Just the Basics
As my Twitter bio says, I’m interested in your dog’s urine. I’m not kidding around here. For a recent Animal Behavior class, I buddied up with a doggie daycare and followed dogs on their afternoon walks. Yes. I was that person walking around NYC with a hand held camera, trailing dogs and video taping them as they peed. This wasn’t a hypothesis testing experiment, I was simply trying to gauge what...
News: Guest Posts
How Well Do You Know Your Dog? Part 2
Does it smell weird in here to you? You know what I’m talking about. That nagging feeling that something smells “different,” but you just can’t put a finger on it. This has been my life for the last three days. Day after day, I’d enter the living room and think, “Did it always smell like that in here? It smells different, right? What is that!?” On the fourth day, I finally sat down on the couch...
Good Dog: Studies & Research
Great Thinkers on Dogs
Six leading canine researchers talk about their work.
Adám Miklósi & Patricia B. McConnell
I think you would have fun playing Mad Libs with your dog’s life, filling in the blanks to match Siena or Diego’s unique personality and interests. After all, your intimate knowledge of your dog is unparalleled. You know what he thinks of the neighbor’s dog, and whether he prefers balls to sticks or carrots to apples. But our canine experts also know your dog, albeit in a different way. Scholars...
News: Guest Posts
How Well Do You Know Your Dog? Part 1
Your knowledge of your dog is unparalleled: You, not I, know whether she sleeps in the same spot all night or instead has a migratory sleep pattern. You know her affinity for trash, or lack thereof. And telling me her breed, age or name won’t give me access to those intimate details. They are for you to know, and for me to, well, not know. Recently, researchers at The Queen’s University of...
News: Guest Posts
Dog Drinking: An Acrobatic Tongue Act
If you live with a dog, then you are familiar with this sound. Unlike barks, growls and howls — dog sounds that easily take center stage — a dog lapping up water is background, white noise. Dog drinking attracts little attention until you unexpectedly step in a puddle of slopped-over water while wearing socks. A closer look reveals there is nothing commonplace about how dogs drink. Instead, to...
News: Guest Posts
What Do You Hear in These Dog Sounds?
All barks are not alike
AS YOU PROBABLY KNOW, your dog’s voice is not like a Bret Michaels concert, pumping out a shower of meaningless noise. Although your dog’s vocalizations might be unwelcome at times, those sounds carry way more information and meaning than any of the former frontman’s power ballads can ever hope to do. Well, maybe not as much as “Every Rose Has Its Thorn.” In recent years, many studies have...

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