As reported at MSNBC, University of London researchers have found that dogs are more likely to approach a crying person than someone who is humming or talking, an indication that man’s best friend wants to comfort humans who are sad.
“The dogs approached whoever was crying regardless of their identity. Thus they were responding to the person’s emotion, not their own needs, which is suggestive of empathic-like comfort-offering behavior,” said researcher Jennifer Mayer.
“Of the 15 dogs that approached a crying owner or stranger, 13 did so with submissive body language, such as tucked tails and bowed heads, another behavior consistent with empathy (the other two were alert or playful).”
On FORA.tv Robert Sapolsky, a professor of biology and neurology at Stanford University, talks about how man’s best friend evolved to empathize.
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