New Study Suggests Domestication Has Rewired Dogs’ Brains

Sharon Renee Animals /
Puppies domesticated study wolves
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Love or hate them, dogs have been a part of society for longer than we could even fathom. But according to a new study, there's a good reason for that. As research suggests, the domesticated animals have actually been programmed to gravitate towards humans. Here's what recent findings have uncovered...

Puppies domesticated wolves study
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According to a report in Current Biology, domestication has rewired dogs' brains to be subconsciously drawn to humans. It all started when Brian Hare, a professor of evolutionary anthropology at Duke University, put together a team to study the true meaning behind canines' longstanding bond with humans. So, what'd he do?

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Hare compared puppies (Labradors or golden retrievers, or mixtures of the two) with their wild cousins, young wolves. While both sets were raised by humans, Hare's team quickly noticed a difference in the animals' behavior: puppies were 30 times as likely to engage with unfamiliar human beings, while 5 times more likely to engage with familiar ones.

Dogs domesticated study wolves
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"This study really solidifies the evidence that the social genius of dogs is a product of domestication," Hare assured of his study's findings. "It is something they are really born prepared to do." Most dog owners can probably attest to Hare's findings: Dogs really are a man's best friend.