In a study at Eotvos Lorànd University, researchers from the Department of Ethology examined how dogs interpret human gestures, comparing them to children. The discovery? The “smarter” dogs, as reported by Agi, seem to pay attention not only to the position of an object but also to its appearance, suggesting a similarity in information processing with humans. The phenomenon, known as “spatial bias,” concerns the interpretation of information in relation to space.

For example, when we show the position of an object to both children and dogs, children interpret the gesture as an indicator of the object, while dogs take it as a direction. This difference, now explored in a specific study, appears to be not only a matter of vision but also reflects how dogs think. Researchers tested 82 dogs in behavioral tasks, evaluating the time it took to learn the position of a reward in relation to the characteristics of an object.

The research revealed that the “smarter” dogs learn more quickly, suggesting a connection between their cognitive abilities and the ability to interpret information in more detail. To understand whether “spatial bias” is related to a sensory or cognitive issue, researchers measured the length of the dogs’ heads, correlated with visual acuity, and subjected them to cognitive tests.

The results showed that dogs with better visual and cognitive abilities exhibited a reduced “spatial bias.” In conclusion, this study sheds light on the minds of our four-legged friends, suggesting that their ability to interpret information goes beyond simple vision, leading to new perspectives on understanding how dogs think.

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