Dogs News -- ScienceDaily
Veterinary research and news on dogs as companions, canine health, wolf pack behavior and more. If it is news about dogs, you will find it here!
02/20/2018 11:30 AM
Cracking the genetic code for complex traits in cattle
The global 1000 Bull Genomes Consortium identified the genetic basis for accurately predicting the complex trait of height across cattle and dairy breeds by pooling large genomic datasets and phenotypes collected from 58,000 cattle. The team validated their findings using the DNA of a wild auroch, the ancient ancestor to all cattle and dairy breeds, and, in a world first, demonstrated the genes influencing height in cattle also influence the trait in humans and dogs.
02/07/2018 09:22 AM
Brain training for old dogs: Could touchscreen games become the Sudoku of man’s best friend?
Spoiling old dogs in their twilight years by retiring them to the sofa and forgiving them their stubbornness or disobedience, doesn’t do our four-legged friends any good. Regular brain training and lifelong learning create positive emotions and can slow down mental deterioration in old age. Physical limitations, however, often do not allow the same sort of training as used in young dogs. In a new study, a team of researchers led by cognitive biologists propose computer interaction as a practical alternative. In the training lab, old dogs responded positively to cognitive training using educational touchscreen games.
01/24/2018 12:17 PM
Fat cat? Here's how much to feed to lose weight
Does your cat lay around all day, only getting up to eat and visit the litter box? Chances are, he's overweight. Maybe you've switched to the 'diet' cat food or tried feeding him less, but you might have noticed it's not easy to get that weight off. A new study explains what it takes to get kitty to slim down.
01/19/2018 08:02 AM
Hunting dogs as possible vectors for the infectious disease tularaemia
Tularaemia is an infectious bacterial disease that is life-threatening for rodents, rabbits and hares, but which can also infect humans and dogs. While contact with contaminated blood or meat makes hunters a high-risk group, the frequency of infections among hunting dogs has not been much studied. Researchers have now confirmed a relevant prevalence of infections in Austrian hunting dogs following a serological study in which seven percent of the animals tested positive. This could lead to more intense debate as to whether the often asymptomatic animals represent an additional risk of infection for people.
01/16/2018 01:42 PM
Are amoebae safe harbors for plague?
Amoebae, single-celled organisms common in soil, water and grade-school science classrooms, may play a key role in the survival and spread of deadly plague bacteria. New research shows that plague bacteria, Yersinia pestis, not only survive, but thrive and replicate once ingested by an amoeba. The discovery could help scientists understand why plague outbreaks can smolder, stay dormant for years, and re-emerge with a vengeance.
12/20/2017 06:57 PM
Most dog treats exceed recommended daily energy allowance
Most commercially available dog treats contain a range of undefined ingredients, including sugars, and often exceed the recommended daily energy allowance for treats ('complementary feed'), warn researchers.
11/28/2017 11:02 AM
Dogs mouth-lick to communicate with angry humans
New research has found that dogs lick their mouths as a response to looking at angry human faces, suggesting that domestic canines may have a functional understanding of emotional information.
11/21/2017 08:52 AM
A chicken-flavored electrolyte drink could help sniffer dogs stay hydrated
The first comparison of plain water, electrolyte injections and a chicken-flavored electrolyte drink as techniques for keeping sniffer dogs hydrated when working in hot weather finds that while all are safe and effective, dogs drink more and are more hydrated when given a chicken-flavored electrolyte drink.
11/20/2017 09:48 AM
Smiling human faces are attractive to dogs, thanks to oxytocin
Researchers found that oxytocin made dogs interested in smiling human faces. It also made them see angry faces as less threatening. Associated with affection and trust, the hormone oxytocin is probably a key factor in the interaction between dogs and humans.
11/17/2017 07:51 AM
Dog ownership linked to lower mortality rate
A team of scientists have used national registries of more than 3.4 million Swedes aged 40 to 80 to study the association between dog ownership and cardiovascular health. Their study shows that dog owners had a lower risk of death due to cardiovascular disease or to other causes during the 12-year follow-up.
11/15/2017 09:48 AM
How to keep cows happy
New research now shows that removing splashes of colors, shadows or water puddles from corrals, keeping noise levels down and not using dogs and electric prods can dramatically reduce the stress cattle experience.
11/01/2017 08:28 AM
Treatment for dogs alleviates fear of noisy fireworks
Many dogs suffer anxiety and fear from the loud bangs and explosions of firework displays. A new study shows how a medicinal treatment can help alleviate common fear behaviors, such as trembling and whining.
10/31/2017 08:18 AM
Genetic study uncovers evolutionary history of dingoes
A major study of dingo DNA has revealed dingoes most likely migrated to Australia in two separate waves via a former land bridge with Papua New Guinea. The find has significant implications for conservation, with researchers recommending the two genetically distinct populations of dingoes be treated as different groups for management and conservation purposes.
10/17/2017 09:01 AM
Domestication has not made dogs cooperate more with each other compared to wolves
Following domestication, dogs should be more tolerant and cooperative with conspecifics and humans compared to wolves. But looking at both in more naturalistic living conditions, however, speaks for more cooperative behavior of wolves. Researchers now show that the wild ancestors are excelling their domesticated relatives in teamwork. In an experimental approach dogs but not wolves failed to cooperatively pull the two ends of a rope to obtain a piece of food.
10/11/2017 10:38 AM
Unraveling the genetics of disc disease in dogs
Since the early 1900s, veterinarians have observed intervertebral disc disease -- a common cause of back pain, rear limb paralysis and inability to walk -- more frequently in dogs with short legs (dachshund, French bulldog, and Pekingese to name a few.) But they couldn't pinpoint why -- until now.Why short-legged dogs more likely to develop painful disease
10/11/2017 07:18 AM
How rabies can induce frenzied behavior
Scientists may finally understand how the rabies virus can drastically change its host's behavior to help spread the disease, which kills about 59,000 people annually. A new study shows how a small piece of the rabies virus can bind to and inhibit certain receptors in the brain that play a crucial role in regulating the behavior of mammals. This interferes with communication in the brain and induces frenzied behaviors that favor the transmission of the virus.
09/27/2017 02:20 PM
The hormone that could be making your dog aggressive discovered
Thousands of people are hospitalized every year for dog bites, and aggressive behavior is a major reason dogs end up in shelters. Biologists have studied the biology behind canine aggression, specifically the role of the hormones vasopressin and oxytocin.
09/21/2017 08:17 AM
Obese dogs helped by 'effective' weight loss trials
On average overweight dogs lose an average of 11 percent of their body weight when enrolled on a weight loss trial according to researchers who have conducted the largest international multi-center weight study.
09/18/2017 09:18 AM
Dogs' social skills linked to oxytocin sensitivity
The tendency of dogs to seek contact with their owners is associated with genetic variations in sensitivity for the hormone oxytocin, according to a new study. The results contribute to our knowledge of how dogs have changed during their development from wolf to household pet.
09/15/2017 07:51 AM
Wolves understand cause and effect better than dogs
A rattle will only make noise if you shake it. Animals like the wolf also understand such connections and are better at this than their domesticated descendants. Researchers say that wolves have a better causal understanding than dogs and that they follow human-given communicative cues equally well. The study provides insight that the process of domestication can also affect an animal's causal understanding.
09/06/2017 08:35 AM
Research dog helps scientists save endangered carnivores
Scat-sniffing research dogs are helping scientists map out a plan to save reclusive jaguars, pumas, bush dogs and other endangered carnivores in the increasingly fragmented forests of northeastern Argentina, according to a new study.
08/29/2017 07:10 AM
An alternative to wolf control to save endangered caribou
The iconic woodland caribou across North America face increasing predation pressures from wolves. A short-term solution to caribou conservation would be to kill wolves. But a new government policy looks at reducing the invasive species moose numbers propping up the wolf population. Researchers have now evaluated the effects of this policy on the caribou population.
08/28/2017 10:33 AM
Beetle's best friend: Trained dogs most efficient in monitoring hermit beetle larvae
Considered at risk of extinction, hermit beetles need to be efficiently monitored. However, due to their life cycle, standard sampling is unreasonably time-consuming and quite damaging to both the species and their habitat. In searching for a solution, scientists suggested that trained dogs might be more successful.
08/25/2017 07:06 AM
New therapeutic antibody for dog cancers
Scientists have developed a new chimeric antibody that suppresses malignant cancers in dogs, showing promise for safe and effective treatment of intractable cancers.
08/07/2017 01:17 PM
Successful guide dogs have 'tough love' moms, study finds
Much has been written on the pitfalls of being a helicopter parent, one who insulates children from adversity rather than encouraging their independence. A new study seems to back up this finding -- in dogs.
08/07/2017 10:05 AM
Largest-ever study of pets and kids' health finds no link
A large body of research has reported an association between the pet ownership and better health among children. But a new study that is the largest-ever to explore the issue contradicts the common thinking. Researchers did find that children from pet-owning families tended to have better general health, but those differences disappeared when factors such as family income and family housing were considered.
08/02/2017 12:28 PM
The truth about cats' and dogs' environmental impact
US cats and dogs cause 25-30 percent of the environmental impact of meat consumption in this country. The nation's 163 million cats and dogs eat as much food as all the people in France. People should keep their pets -- and keep feeding them meat -- but there may be steps pet owners can take to reduce their environmental impact, says a researcher.
08/01/2017 05:33 PM
Whole genome sequencing identifies cause of zoonotic epidemic
For the first time, researchers have used whole genome sequencing to identify the cause of a zoonotic infection that sparked a national epidemic. Researchers describe their use of whole genome sequencing to determine the cause of a respiratory disease that ripped through a population of native horses in Iceland several years ago.
07/31/2017 09:45 AM
New MRI contrast agent tested on big animals
Experiments in dogs, rabbits and monkeys show the efficacy and biocompatibility of a new MRI/MRA contrast agent in detecting stroke. This T1 MRI contrast agent based on ultrasmall iron oxide nanoparticles could become a possible alternative to clinically used gadolinium-based agents.
07/24/2017 07:16 PM
Dog walking could be key to ensuring activity in later life
Regularly walking a dog boosts levels of physical activity in older people, especially during the winter, a new study has shown. Researchers found that owning or walking a dog was one of the most effective ways to beat the usual decline in later-life activity, even combatting the effects of bad weather. Dog owners were sedentary for 30 minutes less per day, on average.
07/20/2017 09:36 AM
Search and rescue dogs do their jobs despite travel stress
When disaster strikes, you want the very best tools, functioning at their peak. In the case of catastrophic earthquakes, tornadoes, or even bombings in war zones, those tools are search and rescue dogs. But researchers have found that getting dogs to disaster sites can add to the animals' stress.
07/18/2017 09:35 AM
Origin of modern dog has a single geographic origin, study reveals
By analyzing the DNA of two prehistoric dogs from Germany, an international research team has determined that their genomes were the probable ancestors of modern European dogs. The finding suggests a single domestication event of modern dogs from a population of gray wolves that occurred between 20,000 and 40,000 years ago.