Dogs and humans have been friends for the longest time. Research shows that dogs were domesticated between 20,000 to 40,000 years ago.
The relationship has become stronger, leading to more people domesticating them. So, after interacting with dogs for all those years, do they think humans are cute? First, dogs can’t tell who is cute and who is not, physically.
They have no idea what is beauty and cuteness as it is learned through magazines, television, and such exposure. What do dogs see in humans, or what do they use to judge how to relate with humans? You will learn that and many more in this article.
Dogs recognize people they are familiar with using scent. If they smell someone familiar, then they are comfortable and can approach them and play with them.
There is no evidence showing that dogs prefer attractive people as they can’t tell what is attractive and what is not. Dogs’ visuals function well when they are in low light. When in dark places, it is hard to tell which color is which, and for that reason, dogs have a limited color vision compared to humans.
Another factor that makes it hard for a dog to tell whether humans are cute is when the dogs look at humans in the face. They tend to concentrate on the eyes. You can use the discrimination test to see where the dogs pay attention.
In the discrimination test, the dog is shown a pair of faces, and the dogs are expected to touch the face; they are familiar with the touch screen as they get trained to touch the screen. The dog gets rewarded when it touches the right face.
Do Dogs Think Humans are Pretty?
It’s good to note that different dogs have different abilities, but many can tell different faces when using the discrimination test. The test works best when a whole face is used.
Like humans, they configure the information on the eyes, nose, and mouth to tell the difference. When you use the same test but use the eyes only and then the nose and then the mouth, they get the test right with the eyes. This confirms dogs are good at following a person’s gaze.
Dog’s aesthetics are different from humans and they can read human faces. When a dog looks at a human face, they first look at the left side. This is to read the facial expressions.
Unlike cats, dogs tend to develop affection and love toward humans around them. The bond is not due to the visual attraction but due to different factors.
An example is how humans treat the dogs; like feeding them, playing with them, and providing a warm place for them to sleep.
How dogs respond to something or someone, whether positive or negative, can be influenced by the dogs’ experiences.
That is why you may find an aggressive dog; it might have had an encounter with a person who mistreated it, and that experience made it aggressive toward all people who resemble the one who mistreated it.
Apart from that, a dog could also be aggressive or friendly with people with certain looks like long hair or any other physique. The reaction could be due to past experiences.
What Do Dogs Respond To?
The cuteness of an individual to dogs lies in their scent, strength, and kindness. The more kind you are to a dog, the more appealing you are. Similarly, if your scent is familiar to the dog and your strength reflects a position of power, you are loveable to the dog. Dogs are without a doubt attracted to human beings.
This concept is proven by studying dog brain scans that show dogs’ thinking about human beings. To ascertain the accuracy of this test, dogs with special and personalized training were used.
When the dog’s brain gets provoked, you will notice a reaction on the dog’s nose. This is because dogs experience most of the world through their nostrils.
Getting the scent of the owner activates the dog’s reward center in the brain. Immediately, the dog associates that scent with attraction and reacts by wiggling the tail in a jovial manner. If the scent is not cute-smelling and not familiar, the dog will not react joyfully.
That scent of the owner gives the dog a reason to be uncontrollably happy. The strength of an individual is cute to a dog and attracts the dog’s attention. If you can show the dog that you are the boss, you earn admiration and respect. Also, the words you use to communicate to the dog will appear as commands that your dog will obey.
This earned admirable respect comforts the dog without feeling the need to be the alpha. When a person’s cuteness is reflected in their character then the dog will like you.
Similarly, if you are kind to the dog, your character becomes cute to the dog. This cuteness is earned by using kind words with facial expressions that show joy. When you show affection to the dog by acting like rubbing their belly, they get attracted to you. The dog will then associate cuteness with these acts.
How a Dog’s Memory Works?
Human beings and dogs have memories that work in different ways. A person will tie the sense of time and events and link them in episodic memory.
You will associate events with time and recall doing something at a given time. Dogs, on the other hand, don’t link time with memories.
Instead, dogs remember things, events, scents, and places through associative memory. A dog will capture information, store it and retrieve it when the need arises. When your dog gets familiar with a certain scent, they will associate it with something such as cuteness.
If you wear cologne when taking the dog for a walk they enjoy, that scent will be embedded in their memory. Consequently, every time the dogs smell the cologne, they will react jovially in anticipation of the walk.
The scent will then be attractive to the dog, which he will associate with cuteness. If you take your dog to the vet and get an injection, they will internalize the setting.
Later, the dog will recall the environment and associate it with getting a shot. The vet’s office becomes unattractive through associative memory due to the pain associated with getting an injection.
Dogs have evolved with these memories for survival. When they sense a situation they associate with cuteness or attraction; they get jovial. The situation may be an environment the dog loves playing in. When taken to this location regularly, the dog will associate you with cuteness since you fulfill its need for peaceful environments.
Dogs are smart, and that is why it was easy to domesticate them. But that doesn’t mean they understand everything or get things like humans to do.
At times their behavior may suggest like they know something, but that could be influenced by experiences, as seen above. If you are kind, dogs can see that and treat you right, so if you want a dog to like you, try being kind and see if it works.
Meet Madison Phillips, your compassionate guide to pet well-being. With experience from VCA Animal Hospitals and Laxton Vet Clinics Bellaire Inc. Madison honed her skills and embraced the balance of medical expertise and compassion, through her articles, she simplifies pet care, whether you’re a newbie or an experienced pet parent.