Dogs and humans, despite living so closely for thousands of years, have developed different advantages when it comes to senses. Humans have much better eyesight than dogs. Dogs have much better smelling and hearing than humans. In fact, dogs are used to find dangerous items to help us. They can even be trained to do more difficult tasks.
Studies from Neuroscience and Biobehavioural Reviews state that dogs also have another ability too. They can tell when a human is being mean to another human. They use these senses to determine how they behave and react to a person.
One of the tests used to determine if dogs reacted differently depending on how someone interacts with their owners consisted of a pet owner struggling to open a jar. The owner asked for help and some of the helpers passively helped open the jar. Some of the helpers refused to open the jar.
The dogs were more likely to accept treats from people who helped their owners out.
The dogs still accepted treats from the people who refused to assist their owners, but the dogs were more hesitant.
In particular, the study showed that dogs are less likely to trust someone that is a jerk. Dogs like nice people. This means a lot, especially when considering that treats were involved.
The next time your dog looks at you funny, remember that they are probably judging you. It’s not necessarily bad. When you have friends, or strangers, over, watch your dog and see how the dog reacts. It could tell you a lot about the people that you have invited into your house.
Everyone knows that dogs are smart animals. Now, you know that dogs can judge accurately whether someone is a jerk.